Dominicans support democracy, shun their President, study
Santiago, Chile. – Latin Americans’ support for democracy fell three points in 2011 to 58 percent, after four years of sustained increase, according to data of the Latinobarómetro 2011 study released today in Santiago, Chile, EFE reports.
It said 58% of the citizens feel that democracy is preferable to any other form of Government, compared with 61% which thought the same a 2010, while 17% prefer an authoritarian Government, two points more than last year.
Latinobarómetro found that weaker support of democracy in the region stems from political and economic factors as well. It also stresses throughout last year, democracy lost followers in 14 of the 18 countries where the poll was conducted.
In Guatemala and Honduras for example, support for democracy has fallen 10 points, to 36 and 43% respectively, while in Brazil it declines from 54 to 45% and from 49 to 40% in Mexico.
Falling support also occurred in Nicaragua (50%), Costa Rica (65%), Venezuela (77%), Colombia (55%), El Salvador (55%), Bolivia (64%), Ecuador (61%), Peru (59%), Chile (61%) and Panama (60%), but the report notes they remained above 50%.
The region’s only countries where support for democracy advanced in 2011 are Paraguay (54%), Argentina (70%), Dominican Republic (65%) and Uruguay, which remains at 75% since last year.
The country which boasts the strongest support for democracy is Venezuela, with 77%, even though it fell seven points compared with last year, while Guatemala has the least, with 36%.
But contrary to Dominicans support for democracy was the study’s finding of a poor job performance for president Leonel Fernandez, who according to Latinobarometro obtains a 36 % approval rating.