The Irish government has suffered a catastrophic drop in support, according to a new poll due out on Thursday.
The poll shows the two combined government parties at just 20 percent support with 17 percent for Fianna Fail — its worst performance ever, and just 3 percent for the Green Party.
Satisfaction with the government is also at an all-time low according to the Irish Times poll, with just 11 percent of the population expressing satisfaction with the job they are doing.
Fianna Fail's support is down 8 points from their performance in the June local and European elections, which were the worst-ever by the party. It is hard to see how the government can survive long-term with such poor backing form the electorate.
Indeed, Green Party Chairman Dan Boyle said Thursday that there could well be a snap election over the next six months.
Boyle said he believed the country would face a snap election because of the banking and finance crisis. "Getting to January is going to be a challenge," he said.
Boyle said he believed the country would face a snap election because of the banking and finance crisis.
"Getting to January is going to be a challenge," he said.
Meanwhile, the Labor Party appears to be the big winner with the steep decline in the popularity of the present government . They are at 24 percent, up 10 percent from their performance in the June elections. Fine Gael is at 34 percent, up two points since the June election.
The poll reflects the continuing decline of the Irish economy and public anger over the manner in which the government has handled the recession, the worst in decades. The perception that bankers and construction moguls who are blamed for much of the downturn are getting away with it and will not be prosecuted has begun to take hold among the populace.
Taoiseach (Prime Minister) Brian Cowen finds his own personal support at just 15 percent, the lowest ever for a sitting Taoiseach.
Opposition leader Enda Kenny of Fine Gael is at 29 percent — almost twice his total. Labor leader Eamon Gilmore is the most-popular politician in Ireland with a 47 percent approval rating. Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams has a 28 percent approval rating. Sinn Fein support is at 10 percent, up 2 from the June election.
The Green Party, the junior party in government, are also in deep trouble. They are at just 3 percent support, while their leader, John Gormley, is at just 19 percent support among voters.