OPINION pollsters, NACTA, said Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley is hugely favoured to win the People’s National Movement (PNM) leadership election, and also could well win the next General Election.
“Almost every person interviewed in an opinion poll conducted by the North American Caribbean Teachers Association (NACTA) in July believes incumbent Dr Keith Rowley will win re-election for the PNM’s leadership post in the party’s internal executive elections to be held in September.” The pollsters said Rowley has an advantage over any potential challengers to win re-election.
NACTA said respondents felt no-one serious had the courage to challenge Rowley.
“But the population feels that a popular likely challenger would give Dr Rowley a run for his money, and they also feel there should be a challenge for leadership to hold the leader accountable.
The poll, taken in June and July, met the general population plus PNM party members.
“The PM is not very popular outside of the PNM base but enjoys strong favourability rating among party members and its base.” Party members, PNM supporters and non-supporters all gave Rowley a huge advantage to win.
“It is very difficult for a challenger to unseat an incumbent for leadership because he has the party executive and the machinery behind him.” Any challenger would have to do a lot of catching up, as Rowley holds an enormous lead, NACTA said.
Some 74 per cent of all respondents said he would win, with only four per cent saying no and 22 per cent not offering an opinion. “Among party supporters, 81 per cent said Dr Rowley will win re-election as PNM leader, with two per cent saying no and 17 per cent not offering an opinion.” NACTA asked respondents if Rowley could win the next general election.
“Almost every traditional PNM supporter also says Dr Rowley will also win re-election for PM two years hence.”
While the general election is too far away to predict, NACTA said, “The trends right now show PNM retaining power come next election because of the divided opposition.”
NACTA promised to release a subsequent report listing the favourability ratings for each party and their political leaders.