Singapore — An independent research-centred agency, Blackbox Research, released its Campaign Polling Summary for the recent General Election on Thursday (July 16).
It shows an engaged electorate primarily concerned with cost of living issues and whose youth favours diversity and greater representation over staying the course, opting for the opposition Workers’ Party (WP).
But while the WP emerged as a big winner with 10 seats in Parliament, the results from Blackbox’s polls show that it was the Progress Singapore Party (PSP), which contested in its first election this year, that is “largely responsible” for the vote decline of the People’s Action Party (PAP).
The PSP did not win in any of the constituencies it contested, but, as the best-performing runners-up in the GE in West Coast GRC, the party’s Ms Hazel Poa and Mr Leong Mun Wai will serve as Non-Constituency Members of Parliament.
According to Blackbox Research: “While the WP decided to concentrate its efforts in a limited number of familiar battlegrounds, the PSP competed far more widely and its ability to capture 10% of the overall vote, despite not winning a seat, is largely responsible for the PAP’s vote decline in 2020.”
The summary added that while those who voted for the PSP were spread evenly among different age groups, voters seem to be made up of more “disaffected former PAP voters” rather than first-time or younger voters.
Here are other key takeaways from the summary:
- High voter engagement — Over 8 in 10 respondents were very engaged in the election campaign.
- The role of social media — Over half of GenZ voters got their news from social media, vs 8% for Baby Boomers. Social media had a stronger presence than both television and radio.
- Top 3 high-profile moments — PAP’s Ivan Lim bowing out of the campaign (32%), Mr Lee Hsien Yang’s support for the PSP (31%), and Professor Jamus Lim in the July 1 pre-election television debate (28%).
“Focus groups held online with undecided voters during the campaign revealed that the Jamus Lim debate performance was a turning point of sorts in the campaign. According to undecided voters, his performance showed that Opposition figures could come across just as well as well as established politicians such as (Dr) Vivian Balakrishnan.”
4. Top 7 campaign personalities are all non-PAP figures:
1. Ms Raeesah Khan
2. Ms Nicole Seah
3. Prof Jamus Lim
4. Dr Tan Cheng Bock
5. Mr Lim Tean
6. Mr Pritam Singh
7 Mr Lee Hsien Yang
5. Cost of living, jobs identified as top two issues.
6. Voter perception — The PAP was seen as reliable and organised, but also as cold and out of touch. The WP was perceived passionate and hardworking, and the PSP as fresh, interesting and friendly.
7. Overall performance — 45% believed the WP performed above expectations during the campaign, and 40% believed this of the PAP, with 39% for the PSP. /TISG