Poll Numbers Heading In The Wrong Direction For JLP Leader


A just-concluded Gleaner-commissioned Bill Johnson poll has found a dip in the favourability rating for Holness and a reduction in the number of persons who believe he should be returned as prime minister.

There is also a decline in the number of persons who believe he would do a better job than the People’s National Party’s (PNP) Portia Simpson Miller as the head of State.

The poll, conducted before the national leadership debate on Tuesday, found that for the first time since he was sworn in to lead the Government, Holness trails Simpson Miller in favourability rating, even though he continues to lead her as the person most Jamaicans think would do the better job as prime minister.

Cannot walk on water

“People are now realising that Holness cannot walk on water. He is being humanised as the days go by,” said pollster Bill Johnson.

“The JLP received a significant boost because of Holness but now Jamaicans are seeing him with his strengths and weaknesses like all of us and are making informed judgements,” added Johnson.

According to the poll, conducted on December 17 and 18, Holness is now viewed favourably by 47 per cent of Jamaicans, down from 51 per cent in November and 49 per cent earlier this month.

The number of persons who view Holness in an unfavourable light is also on an upward trajectory, 24 per cent in November, 25 per cent early December and 31 per cent in the latest poll.

For Simpson Miller, her favourability rating has climbed to 50 per cent, its highest level in months. The persons who view the PNP president in a negative light has declined from a high of 40 per cent in June to 37 per cent in the latest poll.

Holness for PM

But despite the increase in her favourability rating, Simpson Miller continues to trail Holness as the person Jamaicans want to lead the government.

Fifty per cent of Jamaicans believe Holness should remain as prime minister. This is down from the 55 per cent recorded early in December but still a healthy lead over the 35 per cent who say they want someone else.

Holness enjoys a 42 per cent support when he is matched up with Simpson Miller as the person Jamaicans think would do a better job as prime minister. The PNP president gets the nod from 39 per cent of Jamaicans while 19 per cent say they are undecided.

Despite still trailing Holness, Simpson Miller is enjoying the momentum as in November she was behind by eight percentage points when the two were matched up. That increased to nine percentage points in early December but is now down to a three percentage point gap.

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