Political Quarterly: fall 2020

The expert poll “Political Quarterly: fall 2020” was conducted by the Ilko Kucheriv Democratic Initiatives Foundation from October 18 to October 23, 2020. 68 experts participated in the poll.

  • Foreign policy is where the President excelled the most: this is the only area where expert ratings have grown (2.7/5) for a third quarter in a row.
  • The ratings of communication with the public are no longer decreasing and are now the same as they were at the beginning of the year (2.5).
  • The ratings of the President’s policy towards resolving the conflict in Donbas increased in the third quarter and stand at 2.1.
  • At the same time, the ratings of the President’s measures to mitigate the COVID-19 pandemic decreased (2.1)
  • The implementation of the reform agenda (1.9) and staffing decisions (1.5) remain the weakest areas.

One answer to the “five important questions”

  • Experts had a mostly uniform opinion on the goal of the “Presidential poll”: 83% of them (58 persons) believe that the poll serves to mobilize the “Servant of the People” voters to take part in the local elections.
  • Further, the majority of experts (71% or 49 persons) believe that the President is attempting to fulfill the election promises by conducting the poll.
  • There is no agreement among experts about whether the poll aims to shift the attention of the public away from the poor handling of the pandemic and justify questionable decisions.

Expert analysis of the consequences of the events that took place in the 3rd quarter

The results of the local elections and the increase in COVID-19 cases will have a significant impact on the political situation in Ukraine in 2021.

The ceasefire in Donbas and the recognition of the edict to appoint Artem Sytnyk as Head of NABU unconstitutional will have moderate impact. The “Presidential poll” will not have significant impact.

Expert forecast: the events that might take place in the 4th quarter

  • The dismissal of the Health Minister M. Stepanov and the intensification of lockdown measures are the two events that the majority of experts evaluate as likely to take place.
  • Curiously, the experts believe that the resignation of the Cabinet of Ministers is more likely to take place than the dismissal of the Minister of the Internal Affairs A. Avakov. Further, experts believe that Avakov has strengthened his bargaining power as compared to his influence in the 2nd quarter.
  • At the same time, experts believe that neither Ukraine will halt the negotiations with Russia about the war in Donbas nor will the “Normandy four” summit take place in the 4th quarter. They also believe that the dismissal of the Verkhovna Rada (parliament) or the dismissal/resignation of the President are not likely to take place.
  • Among the considered nonstandard political decisions that are a frequent part of the public discussion, the decision that experts treat most negatively is the official request of the Ukraine’s government to receive COVID-19 vaccines from Russia and to finance the budget by increasing the supply of money.
  • Strengthening lockdown restrictions and the declaration of the state of emergency that impacts civil rights to halt the spread of COVID-19 are the other two decisions that experts evaluate negatively.
  • The majority of experts have a negative attitude towards the idea to halt the foreign debt payments until the end of the pandemic and condemn the idea that Ukraine should grant political support to one of the sides in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.
  • At the same time, the majority of experts supported the hypothetical proposal to ban parties that cooperate with the Russian government and revise the Minsk agreements at Ukraine’s initiative.
  • Curiously, most experts positively evaluated the legalization of firearms and euthanasia for the terminally ill – still, the majority of respondents did not approve of the initiatives.

SURVEY RESULTS

1. Please evaluate the performance of President Volodymyr Zelensky in July-September 2020 in the following areas:

 

1 – very inefficient

2 – partly inefficient

3 - mediocre

4 – partly efficient

5 – very efficient

Undecided

Average score

Communication with the public

9

26

18

10

4

0

2,5

Mitigation of the COVID-19 pandemic

21

25

17

6

0

0

2,1

Foreign policy

11

14

26

14

3

0

2,7

Implementation of the reform agenda

19

36

9

4

0

0

1,9

Resolution of the conflict in Donbas

15

30

18

4

0

1

2,1

Staffing decisions

42

16

7

1

1

1

1,5

 

 

1st quarter

2nd quarter

3rd quarter

Communication with the public

2,1

2,3

2,7

Mitigation of the COVID-19 pandemic

2,6

2,2

2,5

Foreign policy

2,5

2,7

2,1

Implementation of the reform agenda

1,9

1,9

2,1

Resolution of the conflict in Donbas

2,0

2,0

1,9

Staffing decisions

1,5

1,6

1,5

2. Do you agree with the following statements about the “five important questions” that President Volodymyr Zelenskyi announced shortly before the local elections in fall 2020?

 

1 – Most likely, yes

2 – Most likely, no

3 - Undecided

The questions are a means of mobilizing the “Servant of the People” voters to take part in the local elections

83,8

5,9

10,3

It is an earnest attempt by the President to fulfil the election promises

7,4

70,6

22,1

 

 

 

 

The goal of the initiative is to shift the attention of the general public away from the failure of the government to mitigate the COVID-19 pandemic

54,4

23,5

22,1

These questions are used to test public opinion before a launch of a nationwide referendum when the law on referendum will be approved by the parliament

23,5

50,0

26,5

It is an attempt to justify questionable decisions via illegitimate means

57,4

26,5

16,2

3. How do you assess the impact of these events on the political processes in Ukraine in 2021?

 

1 – no impact

2 – some impact

3 – moderate impact

4 – significant impact

5 – decisive impact

Undecided

Average score

Results of the local elections

0

3

7

47

11

0

3,9

Increase in COVID-19 cases

0

7

19

33

7

2

3,6

Ceasefire in the Donbas region

3

21

30

12

2

0

2,8

The recognition of the edict to appoint Artem Sytnyk as Head of NABU unconstitutional

5

20

22

19

1

1

2,8

The signing of the Political, Free Trade and Strategic Partnership Agreement between Ukraine and the UK

7

27

18

13

2

1

2,6

The conduction of the poll initiated by the President of Ukraine on the 25th of October

8

33

20

6

1

0

2,4

The continuation of mass protests in Belarus

18

 

30

13

5

1

0

2,1

4. Please evaluate the likelihood of these events taking place in the coming three months:

 

1 –will definitely not take place

2 – will most likely not take place

3 -

The probability of the event taking place and not taking place is roughly the same

4 – will most likely take place

5 – will definitely take place

Undecided

Likelihood of taking place

The dismissal of Ukraine’s Health Minister M. Stepanov

1,5

27,9

29,4

30,9

2,9

7,4

51,5

The strengthening of lockdown measures similar to those conducted in the spring 2020, including the limitations on transportation, businesses, enterprises, and institutions

1,5

35,3

25,0

26,5

5,9

5,9

50

The dismissal of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine

5,9

32,4

44,1

13,2

0,0

4,4

41,9

The halt of negotiations with Russia as part of Normandy talks and the Minsk agreements

10,3

32,4

41,2

5,9

1,5

8,8

37,9

The summit of the “Normandy four” leaders

19,1

27,9

32,4

10,3

0,0

10,3

34,4

The dissolution of the Verkhovna Rada (parliament) of Ukraine

26,5

45,6

22,1

1,5

0,0

4,4

24,6

The dismissal of the Internal Minister A. Avakov

35,3

47,1

13,2

0,0

0,0

4,4

19,2

Dismissal/resignation/etc. of the President

70,6

11,8

11,8

0,0

1,5

4,4

10,7

The agreement between Ukraine and Russia to end the war in Donbas

66,2

25,0

5,9

0,0

0,0

2,9

9,5

5. Now consider the potential nonstandard political decisions. What is YOUR attitude towards these decisions?

 

1 – Completely opposed

2 – Evaluate negatively

3 - Neutral

4 – Evaluate positively

5  - Completely support

Not of importance/undecided

The financing of the budget by increasing the money supply

63,2

25,0

2,9

4,4

0,0

4,4

The revision of the Minsk agreements at Ukraine’s initiative

2,9

19,1

17,6

41,2

16,2

2,9

The provision of political support to one of the sides in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict

30,9

27,9

20,6

14,7

2,9

2,9

The halt on foreign debt payments until the end of the pandemic

33,8

30,9

20,6

7,4

4,4

2,9

The introduction of the state of emergence and the limitations of certain civil rights (freedom to move, immunity) to hamper the spread of the coronavirus        

45,6

25,0

16,2

10,3

2,9

0,0

The official request to Russia to receive the coronavirus vaccine

80,9

13,2

1,5

4,4

0,0

0,0

The ban on parties that cooperate with the Russian government

2,9

22,1

4,4

23,5

44,1

2,9

The legalization of euthanasia for the terminally ill, including those who have COVID-19

5,9

22,1

16,2

33,8

16,2

5,9

The legalization of firearms

14,7

22,1

11,8

26,5

22,1

2,9

Please indicate your occupation

 

Number of responses

Expert, analyst, scientist

52

Journalist

6

Activist

14

Other

4

List of polled experts      

1.       Andriy Biletskyi

2.       Anufriev Yuriy

3.       Balabanova Hanna

4.       Belyi Dmytro

5.       Boyarchuk Dmytro

6.       Bunyk Mykola

7.       Verheles Tetyana

8.       Volodymt Dubrovskyi

9.       Volodymr Kuprii

10.     Horetskyi Oleksii

11.     Hryshko Volodymyr

12.     Denys Davydenko

13.     Dmytro Tuzhanskyi

14.     Diomin Denys

15.     Zamyatin Victor

16.     Zakharchenko Artem

17.     Ilona Solohub

18.     Inna Voloshevych

19.     Iryna Romanchenko

20.     Iryna Slavinska

21.     Kalitenko Oleksandr

22.     Kyrychenko Yuliya

23.     Kolodii Antonina

24.     Kolomiets Oleksandra

25.     Kolohina Anna

26.     Krayev Oleksandr

27.     Kresak Yuriy

28.     Kryvosheyev Dmytro

29.     Levonova Mariya

30.     Lymar Olha

31.     Lynnyk Nataliya

32.     Lubov Palyvoda

33.     Marharyta Hvostova

34.     Mariya Heletii

35.     Myronenko Yevhen

36.     Mincheva Yuliya

37.     Mishenko Mykhailo

38.     Mostipaka Oleksandr

39.     Oksana Kuzyakiv

40.     Oleksandr Neberykut

41.     Oleksiy Haran

42.     Oleksiy Koshel

43.     Olena Bulatova

44.     Olha Zhmurko

45.     Olha Miroshnyk

46.     Pashkov Mykhailo

47.     Petrenchuk N.

48.     Ponomarenko Volodymyr

49.     Popov Yevhen

50.     Prudka Olha

51.     Pyatyhorets Roman

52.     Rybachenko Victor

53.     Romanuk Vasyl

54.     Stehnii Oleksandr

55.     Stepanenko Iryna

56.     Stepanov Mykola

57.     Suslov Anton

58.     Tymoschuk Victor

59.     Khavronyuk Mykyla

60.     Khymychuk Anastasiya

61.     Shlinchak Victor

62.     Yuschenko Oleksandr

63-67. These experts preferred to remain anonymous

 

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