Attitudes on new government's success against organized crime vary sharply
The results of a national survey published today by the respected Mexico City newspaper El Universal found that six of 10 respondents believe the PRI administration of president Enrique Peña Nieto should prioritize the creation of jobs over domestic security issues, and 49% said the sluggish economy should be the government's principal concern.
The survey, conducted by the newspaper and a private pollster, was taken earlier this month, and also found that Mexicans disagree on whether the administration can claim results in Mexico's 92 month old drug war, which was launched by the previous government in December 2006.
When asked, "Which is more important, the creation of jobs or reducing insecurity?," 59% said the former and 21% chose the latter.
The survey results were announced just three days after the PRI government formally inaugurated its first national paramilitary force, in the making since 2012. Mexico's national gendarmerie is here.
Perceptions of the administration's success in curbing organized crime violence were less in accord, particularly when measured against the government of former president Felipe Calderón Hinojosa, who left office November 30, 2012.
At this point in Peña Nieto's term (21 months), 43% said they believe violence has increased despite the government's efforts. Over Calderón's entire six year term, an average of more than 70% said the same thing, although that number had dropped 10 points or more by the time his controversial PAN presidency came to a close, according to El Universal's analysis.
In answering a separate survey question, 62% of respondents said the current administration has been unable to reduce narco violence, while only 33% opined that it had succeeded in that task.
Self-identified members of Mexico's far left wing Democratic Revolution Party (PRD), the center right National Action Party (PAN) and independent voters were the most likely to say that president Peña Nieto has failed to make progress on security issues, revealing a strong political bias on the issue.
When asked if the PRI administration's drug war strategy has left Mexico more or less secure, 43% of survey respondents said less, while 20% answered more.
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