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Polls Apart – Divergence in National Survey Results

By Messenger Staff
Monday, December 12
Currently the issue of polling results carried out by different institutions has become a topic of commentary in the Georgian media. On 7th of December the unofficial results of the International Republican Institute (IRI) were revealed. On the 8th official results of polling carried out by the Institute of Social Research and Analysis (ISRA) on behalf of the Georgian Development Research Institute were also published.

IRI research results were not published officially by the institute, whereas the results of the Institute of Social Research and Analysis were presented to the journalists, analysts and representatives of the diplomatic corps officially. The government hailed the results of the IRI results, intensively quoting the part of the research which highlighted majority support for the United National Movement (UNM). In the IRI research, to the question whom would you support if the elections were held tomorrow, the results were as follows: UNM received 42%, the so far non existent but announced Ivanishvili’s party received 18%, and the Christian Democratic Movement 8%. Of course these results were much appreciated and talked about by officials in Tbilisi.

The Institute of Social Research and Analysis results and answers to the same type of questions were as follows: the UNM received 35%, Ivanishvili affiliated organizations 32% and Christian Democrat Movement 4.3%. One can see the difference - IRI research results show overwhelming majority support for the UNM, more than twice that of Ivanishvili's party, whereas ISRA shows the difference between supporters of the UNM and Ivanishvili's party is only 3%, and the Christian Democrats results almost twice as bad as in the IRI poll.

There were different results in other areas as well concerning the support of Ivanishvili's party which has entered the game just recently. Many independent analysts think that the ISRA results appear more convincing. It should be mentioned that it is in the best interest of all political players to receive fair results without any manipulation, because these fair results give ground to better elaborate tactics and strategy for any political force to move forward. On the other hand if the results are manipulated and adjusted towards the preference of any of the sides this give distorted picture of reality and therefore prevents the political forces from using correct strategies for achieving better results. Each must make up their minds which poll they can most trust.