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(LEAD) 84 pct of public approve of Moon's job performance: survey

All Headlines 11:35 June 02, 2017

(ATTN: UPDATES with comparisons with past presidents in paras 5, 8-10)

SEOUL, June 2 (Yonhap) -- More than 80 percent of the public approve of President Moon Jae-in's job performance so far, a survey showed Friday, less than a month after the liberal took office.

In the survey conducted on 1,004 adults from Tuesday to Thursday, 84 percent of respondents said they think Moon is "doing a good job," while 7 percent said he is "not doing a good job," according to Gallup Korea.

It was the first such poll conducted by Gallup since Moon took office on May 10. Three percent said they neither approved nor disapproved of his performance, while 5 percent declined to answer or were unsure.

Moon's approval rating was the highest among those in their 40s or younger at over 90 percent, followed by those in their 50s at 82 percent and those aged 60 or above at 65 percent.

"President Moon's approval rating breaks the record for all presidents," Gallup said. "The previous record was set by then President Kim Young-sam in June and September of 1993 at 83 percent."

Supporters cited Moon's communication skills (18 percent), his personnel choices (10 percent) and overall job performance (8 percent).

Critics accused him of poor personnel picks (28 percent), incompetence on North Korea and security issues (10 percent) and inconsistency in words and actions (7 percent).

The survey showed Moon's biggest strengths were the largest weaknesses of his predecessor Park Geun-hye, Gallup said. In the first job performance survey conducted after Park's inauguration in February 2013, the then president gained 44 percent.

"Compared to the 13th to 15th presidents, the 16th to 18th presidents faced more controversy surrounding the parliamentary confirmation hearings (for their personnel nominations) during the transition period or at the start of their terms, which had a negative impact on their job performance evaluations," Gallup said. "But (19th) President Moon is different from them in that he was inaugurated immediately after the end of the vote count with no period as president-elect because it was a by-election."

The survey had a margin of error of 3.1 percentage points at the 95 percent confidence level.

President Moon Jae-in speaks during a meeting with his senior secretaries at his office Cheong Wa Dae in Seoul on June 1, 2017. (Yonhap)

hague@yna.co.kr
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