San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Popularity Has Surged

Poll Says Ex-President’s IF the country elected its next President today, former President Oscar Arias (1986-1990) would win, according to a recent poll conducted by CID-Gallup for the daily newspaper La República and television network Repretel.Surveyors interviewed 1,240 Costa Ricans over the phone April 17-22. The poll claims a margin of error of plus or minus 5%.Arias’ popularity has surged since he officially declared his candidacy in March (TT, March 17). He has a 71% approval rating.When asked what party they would vote for, 42% of those surveyed said National Liberation Party – the party Arias belongs to. This was the first time since 2002 that more than 40% of Costa Ricans supported one party.Under Costa Rican law, a candidate must obtain at least 40% of the vote to be elected President. If no one receives that amount, a runoff election must be held between the two candidates with the most votes.Approximately 19% of voters said they favored the ruling Social Christian Unity Party. Citizen Action Party had the support of 5% and the Libertarian Movement 4% of voter support.

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