Poll: Tunisians Say Country Moving in Wrong Direction

Dec 06, 2013

            A growing percentage of Tunisians are dissatisfied with their government’s performance, according to a new poll by the International Republican Institute (IRI). Some 79 percent of respondents said their country is headed in the wrong direction, the highest percentage recorded since IRI first administered the poll in early 2011. About 57 percent of Tunisians felt that their living standards were much worse in 2013 than in 2012. Respondents were primarily concerned about the economy and unemployment followed by the security situation and terrorism. But Tunisians were not confident in any specific opposition party to a better job at governing.
            Only 14 percent of respondents said they would vote for Ennahda, the leading Islamist party, in the next elections. Some 19 percent said they would vote for The Call of Tunisia, a secular opposition party. But nearly a third were undecided.
            Just over half of Tunisians said they were satisfied with the state of democracy in their country. But 35 percent thought Tunisia is a flawed democracy and 37 percent said Tunisia is not a democracy at all. Despite widespread dissatisfaction with the government, 53 percent of Tunisians would still prefer a democratic government that led to instability and insecurity rather than a stable authoritarian government. The following are excerpts from the poll, undertaken in cooperation with Elka Consulting with support from the Middle East Partnership Initiative.

Click here for the full report.

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The Islamists Are Coming is the first book to survey the rise of Islamist groups in the wake of the Arab Spring.  Often lumped together, the more than 50 Islamist parties with millions of followers now constitute a whole new spectrum—separate from either militants or secular parties.  They will shape the new order in the world’s most volatile region more than any other political bloc. Yet they have diverse goals and different constituencies. Sometimes they are even rivals.

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