Poll Shows Iraqis Optimistic About Institutions, Elections
By Harold Heilsnis
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, June 28, 2004 The Iraqi people expressed confidence in their country's future as it moves from occupation to the newly sovereign interim government toward free elections, according to a recent Coalition Provisional Authority poll.
In the poll, conducted June 9-19, 68 percent of Iraqis expressed confidence in the interim Iraqi government, and 79 percent said the new government would make things better for Iraq. Prime Minister Iyad Allawi and President Ghazi al-Yawar also drew strong support, 73 percent and 84 percent, respectively.
Pollsters commissioned by the CPA conducted face-to-face interviews with 1,083 randomly selected people in Baghdad, Basrah, Mosul, Hillah, Diwaniyah and Baqubah. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.1 percent.
In looking at their institutions, 70 percent of those polled expressed confidence in the new Iraqi army, while 82 percent said they have confidence in today's Iraqi police force.
More than half, 52 percent, thought that upcoming elections will be free and fair, while 36 percent believe there will be minor problems. Three-quarters of Iraqis said their best guarantee of free and fair elections would be careful monitoring by international election experts.
Nearly two-thirds, 64 percent, indicated that all political parties, regardless of their policies, should be given access to television to reach voters.
On the list of trusted sources for information about the electoral process, 78 percent said they trust family and friends "just about always" or "most of the time." Next came religious leaders (71 percent), the new interim government (61 percent), Al Iraqiya TV (47 percent), Al Jazeera TV (40 percent) and Al Arabiya TV (39 percent).