RUSSIALINK: “Putin’s Approval Rating Lowest Since 2013 – Poll” – Moscow Times/ Levada Center

File Photo of Kremlin Aerial View, adapted from .gov source

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – October 25, 2018)

President Vladimir Putin’s approval rating has fallen to 66 percent, its lowest level since 2013, according to a recent poll published by the independent Levada Center.

Putin’s popularity has been hurt by controversial legislation he signed earlier this month to raise the pension eligibility age to 65 for men and 60 for women. In a separate poll published by Levada earlier this month that asked respondents to select the politicians they trust the most, Putin was only named by 39 percent of people – a 20 points drop in a year.

Sixty-six percent of respondents in Levada’s latest poll said they approved of Putin’s actions, corresponding to a four point drop since August and a 16 point drop since April of this year.

The percentage of respondents who expressed disapproval of Putin’s actions has almost doubled since April – growing from 17 percent to 33 percent in the latest rating. Putin’s approval hit an all-time high of 87 percent in August 2014 in the aftermath of Russia’s annexation of Crimea from Ukraine.

Meanwhile, 64 percent of those surveyed by Levada said they disapproved of Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev. The prime minister was the subject of a corruption investigation by opposition leader Alexei Navalny last year that had over 27 million views on YouTube and drew thousands of young Russians to the streets in 2017.

In contrast to Putin, Medvedev’s approval ratings grew in the latest poll to 34 percent, a six point increase since August.

Levada conducted its survey among 1,600 respondents in 52 Russian regions between Oct. 18 and Oct. 24.