KINGSTON, March 13, 2017 - The latest RJR Gleaner Group Don Anderson poll has shown that the ruling Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) would come out the victor if a general election is held at this time.
The standings show that the party has greater support across all the categories polled, when compared with the opposition People's National Party (PNP).
"Twenty-six per cent of all persons that we interviewed said they would vote for the Jamaica Labour Party as against 19 per cent who said they would vote for the People's National Party," Pollster Don Anderson outlined.
"Perhaps this seven per cent gap is less than would've been expected the background of the readings last week on party support and leadership support. But the fact of the matter is that when you accumulate all of this, it does suggest that there are a significant number of persons who are either undecided or have decided that they are not going to go out to vote," he explained.
The poll divided the categories of voters into age groups to ascertain the party support base in each.
The JLP's support came primarily from persons in the 35-44 age group, where the gap between itself and the People's National Party was 16 percentage points.
Apart from that, nine per cent more young people in the 18-24 group said they would vote for the Jamaica Labour Party as against those who would vote for the People's National Party.
In addition, eight per cent more males said they would vote for the JLP.
Don Anderson also checked the support base for the opposition People's National Party.
However, the PNP did not have the largest support in any of the demograpic groupings based on age and gender variables.
The party's best showings were amongst persons who were 65 years and over as well as amongst persons who were in the 45-55 age group. With these groups, the party was able to reduce the JLP's lead by two percentage points.
The RJR Gleaner Group Don Anderson poll also checked the main reasons persons would vote for either the Jamaica Labour Party or the opposition Peoples National Party.
For the Jamaica Labour Party, 24 per cent of respondents said they would vote for the JLP because it is the best party to run the country.
The second largest reason was traditional support, while others felt the party was doing a good job.
Meanwhile, 35 per cent of respondents said they would vote for the People's National Party because they were always supporters of the party.
Apart from that, people felt they had done a good job running the country and should probably be given another chance should an election be called now.
And in a response, the People's National Party (PNP) says it is exploring strategies to rebuild political support with the polls showing it lagging significantly behind the governing Jamaica Labour Party (JLP).
PNP General Secretary Julian Robinson, responding Monday on RJR’s Beyond the Headlines, conceded that the party’s standing was “not where we would want to be.”
He said the PNP was selecting candidates “at a very early stage so that we can put people in place; they can develop relationships, electors can get to know them.”
Additionally, he said, the PNP was developing a set of policies “that can act as an alternative to what exists.”
Those policy options were being discussed internally and would shortly be shared with the public, he said.