The ruling party-commissioned public opinion survey, fielded in mid-November, shows National Movement in lead, followed by billionaire opposition politician Bidzina Ivanishvili’s yet to be established party with others far behind.
The poll was commissioned by the ruling National Movement party to Greenberg Quinlan Rosner, the U.S.-based research and strategic consulting firm, which was first hired by the ruling party for the January, 2008 presidential elections.
Among all 1,200 surveyed voters, according to the poll which was made available to Civil.ge by the ruling party, National Movement has 42% and Ivanishvili’s planned party 28%; Christian-Democratic Movement (CDM) – 4%; 17% were undecided, according to the poll which has a margin of error of 2.8%.
The survey estimates that only among those 56% of surveyed voters who are most likely to vote – defined as “likely voters” – the ruling party’s support grows to 48% and Ivanishvili’s party garners 29% (margin of error for “likely voters” is 3.8%).
The survey, which was fielded on November 12-15, also examines by responses to other questions how 17% of undecided voters would likely vote; by allocating undecided likely voters, the survey gives ruling party twenty-percentage-point edge, leading Ivanishvili’s planned party, 54% to 34%; CDM has 5%.
“Our past experience shows that figures based on allocated likely voters are quite reliable. The figures show that the ruling party is keeping its strong support base,” MP Giorgi Gabashvili of the ruling party said.
He said that the poll also showed Ivanishvili becoming “a major player” on the opposition front, who “has consolidated opposition votes.”
On its website Greenberg Quinlan Rosner lists President Saakashvili; the ruling National Movement party and Tbilisi Mayor Gigi Ugulava among its clients. Greenberg Quinlan Rosner’s local contractor in Georgia is Tbilisi-based polling, market research and consulting firm ACT Research.