IRI : 52 percent of respondents think Georgian government can’t handle relationship with Russia well

A new nationwide public opinion survey of Georgian citizens by the International Republican Institute’s (IRI) Center for Insights in Survey Research shows 71 percent of Georgians think that Russia’s aggression toward Georgia is ongoing — a level last reached in February 2014.

According to the same survey, the majority of Georgians regard Russia as Georgia’s greatest political and economic threat. Moreover, 52 percent of respondents do not believe that the current government has handled the relationship well.

This sense of pessimism was echoed in Georgians’ assessment of the government’s performance. Twenty-six percent of respondents struggled to name a government accomplishment, and 35 percent said that the government had no accomplishments. The most frequently named accomplishment was healthcare reform, named by 15 percent of respondents. No other accomplishment rated more than 4 percent of all spontaneous mentions, and jobs and employment were not mentioned.

The survey was conducted on behalf of the International Republican Institute’s Center for Insights and Survey Research by Dr. Rasa Alisauskiene of the Baltic Surveys/The Gallup Organization, with the fieldwork carried out by the Institute of Polling & Marketing. Data was collected throughout Georgia between May 20 and June 11, 2019, through face-to-face interviews at respondents’ homes. The nationally representative sample consisted of 1,500 permanent residents of Georgia aged 18 or older and eligible to vote. The margin of error does not exceed plus or minus 2.5 percent for the full sample, and the response rate was 68 percent. The survey was funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development.

Zurab Abashidze – We have not received information about possible suspension of trade relations with Russia from formal sources