There Are Still No Political Problems In Jordan

The Jordan Center for Social Research has conducted another poll, about 6 months after its first horrifying one. As before, I’ll run down the results as mentioned in a Jordan Times article, to spare you the excessive reading.

According to the poll:

– 64.8% of Jordanians see the Kingdom as generally being on the right track
– 27.7% of Jordanians believe that the country is going in the wrong direction.
(6.4% overall increase since March 2007)

– 45% of Jordanians feel that rising costs of living is the country’s most important problem (down from 55.2% in May 2006)
– 17.6% of Jordanians think unemployment is the most important problem.
– 9.3% of Jordanians think poverty is the most important problem.

– 7.3% of Jordanians think the “Palestinian issue” is the most important political problem that requires the government’s immediate attention.

– 41.8% of Jordanians feel that there are no political problems in Jordan (a significant 12.3 percentage point increase over March 2007)
– 29.4% are not sure or don’t know.

– 25.4% of Jordanisn think that the freedom to publicly criticise the government’s policies and decisions is guaranteed to a large extent (an increase of 7.7% from March 2007)
– 33.6% of Jordanians think that such a freedom is “somewhat guaranteed” (up from 28.3%)
– 19.2% of Jordanians said that the freedom to publicly criticise the government is not guaranteed at all (a 33.1% drop)

– 60.9% support the 2003 Elections Law, stipulating the “one-person, one-vote” system (5.2% increase from March 2007)
– 18% support a “one-seat, one-district” system
– 8.5% expressed support for a mixed system of “party/electoral lists and district seats”
– 8.1% backed a “national proportional list” system.

If parliamentary elections were held today (people would be surprised because they’re usually held in November):

– 41.3% say they would vote for a “Jordanian nationalist” candidate (up 4.4% since March 2007)

– 14.3% said they would vote for a “political Islamist” candidate (down 3.9% since May 2006)

– 6.9% said they would vote for an “Arab nationalist” candidate.

– 30.3% said they would not vote for someone based on political ideology.



  • a recent survey showed that many jordanains do not believe secret ballots are secret and that their voting choices will have consequences. same for polls and surveys. many Jordanians believe that those asking questions in surveys are agents. the top questions and answers in this survey reek with this sort of doubt in the neutrality of the survey sponsors. lets face it, how many of you who live in jordan will talk to a perfect stranger about your views of jordan’s problems openly. then of course you have the recent phenomena of political pressure applied on some NGOs who were accused of trying to “harm jordan’s image.” fact is, there is so much suspicion going around it’s impossible to get a straight answer from many people on topics they think are critical of the government.

  • Bambam, I wanted to write, but “sho bedna ne7ky lane7ky”! Where do I start replying and giving my opinion on this???? It also doesn’t need a comment.

  • hey sorry if i offended 😀 but really is it even worth commenting on ? I look at it as the best scripted punch line i can have for my day when i read over such “””””””””polls””””””””””
    so when i read ur comment i couldn’t help but smile and write what i wrote

  • Fadel: you are absolutely right in your thinking because that’s what I thought until fairly recently. I just finished writing an article for Jordan Business on polling in Jordan and its impact on public policy. In the course of the research I discovered that while there is still the perception of fear from answering questions directly due to the mukhabarat-syndrome, this perception as it turns out looks to be a minority. the majority of jordanians usually rant on and on in phone surveys. It’s usually the government-produced polls, which are usually conducted face-to-face, which illicit fear.

    Bilal: I swear on everything that is holy that that was the original post title. I changed it because I didn’t think anyone would get it. Also, I wanted to save it for future use 😀

  • nas, sure people from the street will go off when you ask them questions in the safe zone, but when you ask question about political problems in jordan, support for election laws, and all these questions that are assumed to reflect on the “higher ups” that call for safe answers, you will get safe answers. the online polls show far more negativity in answers to similar questions. thats’ because most Jordanians think there is an acceptable degree of anonymity on the web. granted not all Jordanians have access to the web, but because of the anonymity factor, they are more accurate than traditional person-to-person polls.

  • ala: i think what is considered the ‘safe zone’ is relative. from what i’ve seen firsthand, there is a huge gap between the face-to-face polling and the telephoning polling. Those living outside the capital will also tend to be people who rant a lot more.

    online polls are pretty much irrelevant, given not only the low internet penetration in jordan, but the fact that a lot of people who participate in them are non-Jordanian.

Your Two Piasters: