Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto’s approval rating sank to a new low in a poll released on Tuesday, as the embattled leader faces a struggling economy and a litany of security and conflict of interest scandals that have undercut his support.
The president’s approval stands at a low of 35 percent, down from 40 percent in May and 56 percent in early 2013 shortly after he took office, according to the survey by polling firm Buendia & Laredo.
Pena Nieto was elected in 2012 to a six-year term, promising robust economic growth via economic reforms and to tame violent crime following years of drug war mayhem.
The poll also indicated that 63 percent of Mexicans believe the country is on the wrong track, a figure that has nearly doubled since Pena Nieto took office.
In the first part of his presidency, Pena Nieto enacted major economic reforms, including overhauls of the country’s energy and telecommunications sectors, but problems later started to pile up.
Pena Nieto was stung by the brazen escape of drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman in July, which followed international outcry over the apparent massacre of 43 students in September by a drug gang working with local police.
The president has also faced conflict-of-interest scandals following revelations that he, his wife and his finance minister had bought houses from government contractors.
The poll surveyed 1,000 adult Mexicans between Aug. 14-19, and has a margin of error of +/- 3.53 percent.
(Reporting by Dave Graham and David Alire Garcia; Editing by Simon Gardner and W Simon)