This month’s data suggest certain stability with a slight tendency towards improvement in almost all the indicators. Variations are very small, but they agree in indicating a certain improvement, something which is usual in the months of June and July when vacations are already approaching, as happens also in other pre-vacations periods, suggesting that Spaniards reject all that may affect their rest and leisure. Therefore, there is a slight increase in Consumer’s Sentiment, in the Evaluation of the National Economic Situation and in Personal Optimism (in three, five and two points respectively), a fact that does not preclude that the three indicators continue to be clearly below the equilibrium level, indicating that there are more unsatisfied and pessimist individuals than satisfied and optimistic ones. There is also a small increase in Propensity to Save and in the proportion of savers, as well as in General Satisfaction with Life, but the proportion of post-materialist oriented persons has declined again (it is the second lowest percent during the last twelve months), something that suggests that Spaniards are primarily worried about traditional materialistic values, as their personal security (because of the increase in delinquency) and their economic security (due to inflation and unemployment). Satisfaction with how Democracy is working remains at a very high level, and there is a one point increase in Satisfaction with the Government, but all other political indicators remain at the same level as last month. Regarding the image of institutions (See this month’s figure in More Significant Indicators, in www.jdsurvey.net), this month’s ranking is as follows: The Crown (6,3 points in a scale 0 a 10 points), Armed Forces (5,8), Constitutional Court (5,7), Ombudsman (5,5), Local government (5,4), National Government, Regional Government and Senate (5,2 points in all three cases), Deputies’ Congress (Parliament) (5,1), Business Organizations (5,0), Catholic Church and Labour Unions (4,8 points in both cases), Banks (4,7) and Political Parties (4,4 points). And the ranking of public leaders this month is as follows: Prince Philip (6,6 points in a scale 0 to 10 points), Felipe González (5,4), José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero (5,1), Gaspar Llamazares (4,0), Mariano Rajoy (3,5) and José Mª Aznar (3,4 points). As a consequence of the small general improvement in ASEP’s Indicators System voting estimate also shows a slight increase in the difference between PSOE and PP, which this month amounts to 4.2 percent points (four decimal points higher than the real difference in the 2004 elections), with an abstention rate seven decimal points lower than real abstention in 2004), a fact that confirms once more that when abstention estimate increases the estimated difference between PSOE and PP decreases, and when abstention estimate decreases, as happens this month, the estimated difference between PSOE and PP increases.
Debate on the State of the Nation
This month’s fieldwork was done little after the Debate on the State of the Nation took place, for which reason the evaluation that Rs made of the said debate probably influenced their answers to the rest of the questionnaire. Only 7% of Rs watched the debate in full on TV (either in live or differed), 32% watched parts of it (in live or differed), and about 60% did not watch it at all. The broadcasting audience was even lower, so that about 80% did not listen to it at all on the radio. On the other hand, 25% of Rs say that the leader they liked better among those who talked was Zapatero, as against 11% who mention Rajoy, but 61% did not answer this question (because they did not watch nor listened to the debate).
Referendum on the Statute of Catalonia
Among those who were interviewed in Catalonia, turn out is estimated as a little over 50% of the electorate, but it must be underlined that the size of this sub-sample has a larger margin of error than the total sample. And, out of those who say they will certainly vote or probably will vote, a little less than two out of three say that they will vote “yes”, and only one in ten approximately say they will vote “no”. But at least one in four Rs still have doubts about what will they vote.
Mass media have given news on delinquency with great frequency and intensity, and especially regarding delinquency performed by organized crime bands, as assaults to individual housing units in particular and households in general, assaults and kidnappings of persons, etc. But, though eight in ten Rs declare they have not taken any protection measures, 5% say they have already taken measures (generally private security, passive alarms, dogs, etc.) and an additional 9% say they have not yet taken any measures but they plan to do so shortly. In this same line, Rs were asked to indicate whether they considered correct or wrong the Government’s policies to fight, respectively, against the different threats to citizens’ security. Opinions are in general balanced between those who think those policies are correct or wrong, and they are also very similar to each other. More specifically, 36%, 35% and 46% define as correct Government’s policies regarding delinquency, organized crime and ETA’s terrorism respectively, and 39%, 37% and 31% consider that the same policies are wrong.
ETA’s Cease Fire
As was said befote, 46% of Spaniards consider that Government’s policy towards ETA’s terrorism is correct and appropriate. Besides, 52% agree with the President’s decision to initiate talks with ETA “in order to put an end to terrorism of this armed band”. However, only one third of Rs think that ETA’s cease fire will be final, while one out of five think that “…it will only last enough to achieve freedom of prisoners and until Batasuna is legalized and can participate in the next elections, and a little over one out of four Rs believe that “…it will only be useful for ETA to reorganize itself and start killing again whenever they consider it convenient”. Furthermore, and for the third consecutive month, Spaniards reject by a large majority and very intensively any of the measures that ETA requests as counterparts to their maintaining the “cease fire”. In fact, using a 0 to 10 points scale where 0 means that R would “never” accept, and 10 means that R would accept “as soon as possible”, more than 70% of Rs declare that they would “never” accept “to favour freeing prisoners with blood crimes”, more that 50% would “never” accept “total independence of the Basque Country”, nor the “legalization of Batasuna”, nor “helping members of ETA to find a job or establish a business”. More than 45% would “never” accept “allowing the Basque Country to annex Navarra” or to “favour freeing prisoners without blood crimes”, or “admitting the right of the Basque Country to self-determination”. In fact, the only counterpart that is less rejected is that of “approaching ETA prisoners to the Basque Country”, though 39% would “never” accept it, and 52% would give this counterpart an acceptance rating lower than 5 points and only 36% would give it an acceptance of 5 or more points.
World’s Football Championship
Only a little more than one third of Rs declare the World’s Football Championship interests them very much or quite a bit, as against a little more than half who say that this competition arouses little or no interest at all. Almost half the Rs think that La Sexta is the TV channel that will transmit the games, and one third belief that it will be La Cuatro, while no other TV channel is mentioned by more than 5%. Besides, 2% of Rs declare having bought the TDT (Digital Land Television) system to watch the games, but 92% say that they have bought nothing in particular. Finally, one third of Rs believe that Brazil will the winner of this championship, and 21% belief that Spain is the one who will win it, but over one third does not answer this question at all.
Income Tax Declaration
One in three Rs state that they were not required to make their income tax declaration, and one out of tour declare having done it with the help of a private advisor or some person they know, and lower proportions say they have done through other means.