76.5% of the Catalan population is in favour of the Catalan administration collecting all taxes paid by citizens and businesses in Catalonia and deciding on their distribution. This is shown by the second part of the 2012 Public Opinion Barometer made public today by the Centre for Opinion Studies (CEO). For the first time, more than half of the persons interviewed would vote affirmatively in a referendum on the independence of Catalonia.
51.1% would vote in favour of Catalan independence if a referendum were held, a figure that represents a 6.5% increase compared to the last survey and which for the first time surpasses the 50% limit. By contrast, the number of persons voting against independence decreases (a decline of 3.6%) and 21.1% would abstain or refuse to vote.
For the first time, Catalonia as an independent State receives most votes of the four types of relationship between Catalonia and Spain represented in the survey. 34% of the persons interviewed would support this formula, followed by 28.7% giving support to a federal solution and 25.4% being in favour of Catalan self-government within the Spanish State. Only 5.7% of interviewees believe Catalonia should simply be a Spanish region.
In this part of the yearly survey, the CEO has included a new question enquiring about the standard of living of the Catalan population if Catalonia were to be independent. Around 55% of those interviewed consider that the standard of living would improve against 16.7% who believe that it would remain the same and 12.8% who believe that the standard of living would be worse.
For 81.9% of the persons interviewed unemployment and the economy constitute their main concern. They consider that Convergència i Unió (CiU) is the political party best capable of addressing these issues.
Election forecast and politicians’ valuation
The most valued politician continues to be Josep Antoni Duran i Lleida (5.65), followed by the Catalan President, Artur Mas (5.47). The best known politician continues to be Artur Mas (96.6%), followed by Josep Antoni Duran i Lleida (92.2%). A majority of Catalans, around 55.8%, give politicians a pass mark.
With regard to voting behaviour, if elections were to be held in Catalonia, CiU would obtain 36.2% of votes and around 60 seats (out of a total of 135). Unlike most European countries, there is no appreciable decrease in citizens’ support to the Government, in spite of the current austerity policies.
CiU is followed in expected votes by PSC, which would obtain 16.4% and 24-25 seats; PP with 10.5% and 15-16 seats; ERC with 9.7% and 15-16 seats; ICV-EUA with 9.5% and 12-13 seats; Ciutadans with 3.7% and 3-4 seats; and Solidaritat per a l’Independència (SI) with 3.5% and 0-4 seats.
If elections to the Spanish Congress were held, CiU would the biggest party in Catalonia with 31% of votes and 18-19 seats, followed by PSC with 24.3% of votes and 13 seats; PP with 16.4% and 8 seats; ICV-EUA with 10% and 4 seats; ERC with 8.5% and 3-4 seats. Ciutadans and Solidaritat per a l’Independència (SI) would not obtain representation in Congress.
The Barometer is a quarterly survey that aims to record the views of the Catalan population on politics, their political values and electoral behaviour, as well their knowledge and valuation of the action taken by political leaders.
The survey is carried out between June 4th and June 18th. The sample consists of 2.500 persons. Margin of error: ± 2.47%.