QCOSTARICA – With a little over 5 months before the presidential elections, the group of undecided is mainly made up of women and young people between 18 and 34 years old.
In addition, the characteristic that most of them are people with low education stands out.
By provinces, those with the highest levels of undecided are Limón, Cartago, Alajuela and Puntarenas.
This is detailed in the most recent survey by the Center for Political Research and Studies (CIEP) of the University of Costa Rica (UCR), carried out in August.
The undecided for the elections on February 6, 2022, represents 41% of the electoral roll.
Among those who show an inclination to vote to decide in electing a new president, represent 58%.
The CIEP survey studied the sociodemographic variables of undecided voters, as well as those who claim to support a presidential candidacy.
41% of registered women are undecided at the moment, and only 25% of them support a candidacy.
Among men, on the other hand, 34% say they are undecided and 33% already support a candidate.
However, it is women who historically go to the polls in the highest proportion.
By age, the survey indicates that 50% of the youngest voters (between 18 and 34 years old) are undecided, compared to only 19% who say they support an applicant.
At an older age, electoral indecision decreases. Among people between 35 and 54 years old, for example, 35% already have a candidate and 34% do not.
“The group of young people from 18 to 34 years old is an important proportion of the electoral roll, although not necessarily the one with the highest participation, since older people pay more than younger ones,” the research adds.
On the other hand, people with a lower level of education are finding it more difficult to support a candidate.
Indecision reaches 44% of people with primary and 42% with secondary, compared to 35% of university students.
Professionals show higher levels of decision. 42% already support some candidacy, compared to 25% of people with a school degree and 24% of those who reached secondary school.
By segmenting the populations by place of residence, the survey found that, in Heredia alone, there are more people with a preferred candidate (37%) than undecided (33%).
In San José, where the majority of voters are located, 38% are undecided compared to 32% who have already decided to vote.
People who live in provinces such as Puntarenas, Guanacaste and Limón tend to vote in a lower proportion than the Central Valley provinces (San José, Alajuela, Heredia and Cartago). Likewise, people with a higher educational level usually vote in a higher proportion than those with a lower educational level, ”the report adds.
Those who have not yet defined their vote represent 43% in Alajuela; 44% in Cartago; 43% in Puntarenas; 41% in Guanacaste; and 48% in Limón.
“In summary, with a view to the 2022 elections, in the group of undecided people and among those who claim to have a preferred candidacy, sociodemographic traits that favor and others that, on the contrary, have tended to inhibit attendance at the urns. As has been indicated, the results of February 2022 will depend to a great extent on the behavior of these two groups ”, concludes the CIEP.
Elections of 2022 will be defined in the second round
According to the CIEP, a good possibility is that the presidential elections of 2022 will be defined in a second round, following the trend of the past two elections.
Second round elections occur when no candidate reaches 40 percent of the valid poll in the first round of voting, as occurred in 2014 and in 2018. There had not been a run-off election in the country since 2002.
If this trend continues, this would be the third consecutive election to be defined in the second round and the fourth in history.