The Lithuanian Center Party headed by MP Naglis Puteikis has for the first time passed the Liberal Movement on the popularity poll, ranking among the country's four most popular parties, shows a survey conducted by RAIT pollster for BNS news agency.
Seimas hall
© DELFI / Domantas Pipas

In the November survey, the opposition conservatives were first with support of 19 percent of those polled, ahead of the ruling Lithuanian Farmers and Greens Union with 16, leaving the difference unchanged from October. The Social Democrats were listed as the first choice by 10 percent of respondents (11 pct a month ago).

The Lithuanian Centre Party was backed by 6 percent of those polled, while the Liberal Movement of Eugenijus Gentvilas secured support of 5 percent of respondents. Over the past four years, the Centre Party's ratings have been consistently growing, while those of the Liberal Movement has been declining.

The Order and Justice party is just below the 5-percent threshold to win parliamentary mandates in multi-mandate voting, with ratings stable at 4 percent.

The popularity list of Lithuania's politicians is led by President Dalia Grybauskaitė, favoured by 63 percent of those polled and disliked by 13 percent. Prime Minister Saulius Skvernelis' respective numbers were 43 percent and 27 percent, while those of Parliamentary Speaker Viktoras Pranckietis – 36 percent and 18 percent.

Gabrielius Landsbergis, the leader of the opposition conservatives, was favoured by 38 percent and disliked by 28 percent, the Social Democrats' leader Gintautas Paluckas was favoured by 24 percent and disliked by 28 percent – the support to the newly-elected leader of the Social Democratic Party has been declining for the past four months.

The Liberal Movement's leader, Gentvilas, drew 24 percent positive opinions and 25 percent negative, the Centre Party's Puteikis was liked by 34 percent and disliked by 18 percent, while the Order and Justice party's leader Remigijus Žemaitaitis was supported by 33 percent and disfavoured by 21 percent.

MEP Valdemar Tomashevski, the leader of the Electoral Action of Poles in Lithuania – Union of Christian Families, remains the most unpopular politician, with likes from 10 percent of those polled and dislikes from 52 percent.

Amid corruption suspicions, the Liberal Movement decided not to found a new party before the start of interrogations and held elections for the party's new leader. At the time of the poll, two candidates to head the party had emerged, namely, Gentvilas and Vitalijus Gailius.

During the survey, the media focused on reports about pharmacies requesting prescriptions for medication that used to be sold without prescriptions, while the opposition announced plans to hold interpellation against the health minister. The period also included discussions on the 2018 budget, especially on doctor wages, with the competition for the Lukiškių Square monument also in focus of public attention.

In November, Puteikis made the press due to his statements in the Anti-Corruption Commission about the probe into the allegations against MP Artūras Skardžius and his comments about MP Linas Balsys who was suspected of appearing in the parliament in a drunken condition, shows data from the media monitoring company Mediaskopas.

The survey of 1,013 Lithuanian residents between ages of 15 and 74 was conducted on Nov. 10-27. The margin error is 3.1 percent.

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