Chinchilla’s Approval Rating Among Costa Ricans at All-Time Low

Costa Rican President Laura Chinchilla’s approval rating fell to an all-time low over her proposed tax increases aimed at trimming budget deficits, a poll published today showed.

Only 23 percent of Costa Ricans approve of Chinchilla’s performance, according to a Jan. 4-10 poll of 1,200 people aged 18 to 79 conducted by regional public opinion and market research firm Unimer in a quarterly survey. The president’s approval rating was 29 percent in the September survey

The poll found 75 percent disapprove of the proposed reform that would replace the current national 13 percent sales tax with a 14 percent value-added tax. The poll showed 13 percent approved of the package while 12 percent had no opinion. The Legislative Assembly is reviewing the proposal.

“It is evident that the fiscal reform plan is harming Chinchilla’s popularity,” said Catalina García, vice president of Unimer, in a phone interview from San José. “It is perceived that she is not doing a good job managing the funds of the state.”

Since taking office as the country’s first female president in May 2010, Chinchilla’s popularity has steadily declined. She won the February 2010 election with 47 percent of the vote.

The Unimer poll has a margin of error of 2.8 percent.

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