MaltaToday Survey | Who’s more trusted than Adrian Delia?

MaltaToday’s regular trust barometers have consistently shown that Delia is hampered by a large cohort of PN voters who do not trust him

Lawyer Bernard Grech and Nationalist MEP Roberta Metsola have a higher trust rating than party leader Adrian Delia, according to a special edition of the MaltaToday survey.

Grech, a lawyer whose first public foray was in the anti-divorce campaign nine years ago, has often been touted within PN circles as a possible successor to Delia.

In a survey where people were asked whom they trusted most from a list of potential PN leadership contenders, which also included the incumbent Adrian Delia, Grech emerged top with 15.1%. He was followed by Metsola with 12.9%, with Delia coming in third with a trust score of 10.7%.

The list of names was compiled on the basis of information that is often shared within PN circles where concerns have often been raised on Delia’s dismal trust rating when compared to his political rival in the Labour Party.

MaltaToday’s regular trust barometers have consistently shown that Delia is hampered by a large cohort of PN voters who do not trust him.

Another outsider whose name has often been floated is that of lawyer Joe Giglio, who scored a trust rating of 5.9%, eclipsing PN MP Claudio Grech, who could only muster 3.4%.

The numbers suggest that the Bernard Grech-Roberta Metsola tandem has the widest appeal across the country but no single person manages to forge ahead everywhere.

Metsola emerges ahead in Gozo (27.1%), the Northern Region (17.9%) and the South-East (14.5%).

Bernard Grech comes on top in the Northern Harbour region (21%), the Southern Harbour (8%) and the Western region (26.7%).

2.6%), the Northern region (16.7%), the Northern Harbour (12.6%) and the Southern Harbour (6.2%).

Metsola’s appeal is stronger among the younger voters. She scores a trust rating of 17.8% among those aged between 18 and 35, ahead of Bernard Grech with 13.3%.

The PN MEP retains her lead among those aged between 36 and 50 with a trust rating of 16.4% – she is followed by Delia (14.2%) and Grech (12.6%).

But Metsola trails off in the older age groups, posting a dismal result among those aged 65 and over, where she comes in fourth with 6%.

Bernard Grech emerges as the most trusted among those aged 51 to 65, where he secures 19.1%, followed by Metsola with 10.1%, and Giglio (9.1%).

Among pensioners, Delia confirms his strength, scoring 18.5%, followed by Bernard Grech with 15.4% and Giglio with 8.8%.

The results suggest that Metsola holds appeal among the younger cohorts but is unable to post good results among those aged 50 and over, where Bernard Grech appears to carry more gravitas.

Again, it is the Bernard-Roberta tandem and not a single person that carries sway across all age groups.

Labour candidates still win trust battle

The exercise also asked respondents who they trusted most between Delia’s potential replacements and the two Labour leadership hopefuls, Chris Fearne and Robert Abela.

The results spell good news for the PL because Fearne and Abela emerge ahead, irrespective of who their PN rival may be.

Labour leadership hopefuls Chris Fearne and Robert Abela still emerge on top in trust rating comparisons with different PN exponents and sympathisers
Labour leadership hopefuls Chris Fearne and Robert Abela still emerge on top in trust rating comparisons with different PN exponents and sympathisers

Fearne scores a consistent trust rating of more than 53% against all the PN names, confirming the high trust rating he achieved in the last survey held earlier this month against Adrian Delia – the PL hopeful scored over 60%.

Abela also beats each of his rivals with a trust rating that ranges between 49.9% (when compared to Bernard Grech) and 52.6% (when compared to Claudio Grech).

The results show that Fearne has an edge over Abela in terms of trust levels.

Metsola posts the best trust performance against both Labour contenders, edging out Bernard Grech.

Against Fearne, Metsola scores 34%, while Bernard Grech comes in at 31.5%. Against Abela, Metsola scores 35.7%, while Grech obtains 34.8%.

The trust ratings of each of the PN individuals are higher than any of the trust scores Delia has achieved over the past two years, which means the PN could be in a better position to start winning back lost ground with the likes of Metsola and Bernard Grech.

Winning back PN voters

A deeper analysis of the results obtained by Metsola and Grech in their run-offs with Fearne and Abela, shows that they have the potential to retain a stronger proportion of the 2017 Nationalist vote.

Metsola wins the trust of 81.7% of 2017 PN voters against Fearne and 85.7% against Abela. These are figures that are substantially higher than what Delia has ever achieved so far.

But the discrepancy between the results is indicative of Fearne’s ability to win the trust of PN voters, apart from those of his own party.

Bernard Grech wins the trust of 76.9% of PN voters against Fearne and 81.9% against Abela. These figures are higher than what Delia has achieved so far but also show that Metsola enjoys an edge over Grech.

Neither Metsola nor Grech, however, have shown the capability of attracting Labour voters.

Methodology

The survey was carried out between Monday 16 December 2019 and Friday 20 December 2019. 496 respondents opted to complete the survey. Stratified random sampling based on gender, region and age was used to replicate the Maltese demographics. The estimated margin of error is 5.5% for a confidence interval of 95%. Demographic and sub-group breakdowns have a larger margin of error.

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