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Most in Poll Oppose New Gov’s Policies

A majority of Puerto Ricans oppose the policies of the territory’s new “commonwealth” party governor, according to a major poll published today.

In addition to 56% opposing Alejandro Garcia Padilla’s program, the Governor gets poor marks on job performance.

The head of the statehood party, Pedro Pierluisi (D), Puerto Rico’s sole representative in the Federal government with a vote in committees of the U.S. House of Representatives, got significantly better ratings in the survey.

Forty-six percent of those polled disapproved of Garcia’s job performance compared with only 34% in Pierluisi’s case. Only 30% approved of the work that Garcia has done compared with 36% for Pierluisi.

The way that Garcia has gone about his job was only supported by 57% of his own “commonwealth” party members. Only 42% of independents were happy with it.

Asked to grade Garcia’s job performance, 37% gave it a “D” or an “F” and only 33% an “A” or a “B.” Pierluisi got an “A” or “B” from 37% and a “D” or “F” from only 26%.

Forty percent said that Garcia had been a worse governor than they expected. Only 12% said he was better.

Twelve percent also said that Pierluisi — who is serving his second four-year term — had done better than they expected this year. But only 19% said that his performance had been worse.

Public trust is a major weakness for Garcia. Only 33% of those polled said that he was truthful, with 50% saying he is not. Forty-six percent aid that they do not trust him in general as governor.

Garcia was elected last November with 47.73% of the vote, a bare .7% over then incumbent Luis Fortuno (statehood party/R), who ran on a ticket with Pierluisi.

Pierluisi was re-elected with more votes than Garcia got, and 48.44% of the vote.

The poll was conducted for El Nuevo Dia newspaper, the island’s most influential news media.

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