In a normal situation, a trust rating gap of 37.3 percentage points between the Prime Minister and the Opposition leader would be cause of concern for the person trying to show he has what it takes to form an alternative government.
However, today’s It-Torċa survey, which shows exactly that, will likely relieve Opposition leader Adrian Delia, if only slightly.
The survey, which was carried out by statistician Vincent Marmara, shows that Prime Minister Robert Abela enjoys a trust rating of 59.5% while Delia’s stands at 22.2%. While certainly huge, it is significantly lower than the 49-point gap between the two leaders registered in a MaltaToday survey last month, which had prompted a fresh bout of political turmoil within the PN over concerns of Delia’s electability.
It also indicates that Abela has managed to rally PL voters behind him a mere month after winning a leadership election while Delia is still struggling to attract PN voters to his cause over two years since his election as leader. While 95.8% of people who voted for PL in the 2017 election say they trust Abela more than Delia, only 55.6% of PN voters said they trust Delia more than Abela, with 25.7% saying they don’t know, 10% refusing to answer and 7.3% saying they prefer Abela.
However, the popularity gap between PL and PN is only 13.1 percentage points, indicating that the PN is more popular among its voters than Delia.
In terms of voting preferences, It-Torċa’s survey shows that 55.3% plan to vote for PL, 42.2% plan to vote for PN and 2.5% plan to vote for a small party. This means that, if an election were to be held tomorrow, the PL would win by some 40,000 votes, slightly higher than the result it obtained in the 2017 election and slightly lower than its margin of victory at last year’s European Parliament elections.
It is also significantly lower than the 60,000 vote-gap between the two parties that was reflected in an It-Torċa survey in September 2019, back when Joseph Muscat was still PL leader