The Bureau for Societal Research (BIRODI) has warned that there is a phenomenon of censorship of public opinion in Serbia and that due to a low voter turnout of around 50%, the realistic figures relating to the support for the Serbian Progressive Party (SNS) are more between 25 and 30%, than 50% and more, as presented in the public.
BIRODI called for an end to the practice of presenting an inaccurate picture of public opinion and warned that the way it is presented contributes to voter abstentionism and is an act against democracy.
In presenting the results on the evaluation of public support for political parties and politicians, poll agencies do not indicate the true media representation of political actors that are the subject of public opinion research.
As pointed out, “the (under)representation in the media, i.e. the negative representation of the opposition, which is often reduced to labelling, aims to cause abstentionism in the part of the electorate that would not vote for the ruling party and its President in the elections.”
“Thus, the focus is not on the opposition parties, but on the voters who would not vote for SNS and its President,” added BIRODI.
Another consequence is that “one in two Serbian citizens over the age of 18 supports the opinion that it is unwise to say what one really thinks, i.e. 48% consider themselves apolitical and anti-political, and cannot recognize which ideological view they support”.
According to the press release, the aim of these public opinion polls is to reduce the election turnout of those voters who would not vote for the ruling parties, and for the actual support for the SNS to be boosted from the realistic 25-35% to over 50% as a result of the low percentage (50%) of voters who actually vote.
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