Survey Findings on Views about Filibustering Released by Hong Kong Institute of Asia-Pacific Studies at CUHK
A telephone survey was conducted from 20 to 22 May 2014 by Hong Kong Institute of Asia-Pacific Studies, The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) to gauge public views about filibustering in the Legco. 753 respondents aged 18 or above were successfully interviewed, with a response rate of 45.4%. The sampling error is + or –3.57% at a confidence level of 95%.
Major findings are summarized as follows:
In the survey, the respondents were asked if they agreed with the current budget filibuster for the sake of introducing universal pensions. While over three-fifths (63.7%) of the 753 respondents disagreed, 13.5% agreed and 21.2% said “in-between”. Similarly, 68.5% of the respondents disagreed with the budget filibuster for the sake of giving a HK$10,000 cash handout to each resident. 8.8% agreed and 20.5% answered “in-between”. Concerning the filibuster of funding for the extension of the landfill of Tseung Kwan O and the construction of a waste incinerator at Shek Kwu Chau, 61.9% of the respondents disagreed, 11.0% showed agreement, and 23.6% reported “in-between”.
Overall, half (51.3%) of the respondents believed that there would be more filibuster incidents in the next year. Only 4.9% thought otherwise by saying that there would be fewer and one-third (34.4%) foresaw the number would remain more or less the same in the next year. Indeed, 46.4% of the respondents agreed with changing the Legco’s rules of procedure in order to prevent filibustering. 27.4% disagreed and 23.5% said “in-between”. Nevertheless, when being asked if they were worried about an impingement on lawmakers’ right to speak should filibuster is restricted by changing the house rules, two-fifths (40.1%) felt so. 39.4% would not be worried and 17.9% answered “in-between”.
Concerning the perception of filibustering, first, a quarter (26.6%) of the 753 respondents agreed that filibuster could be used as a chance to raise the public awareness over certain social issues so as to force the government to face the people’s demand and 46.6% disagreed. Second, almost one-third (31.5%) agreed with the statement that “Filibustering is a result of the lack of universal suffrage in the Legco election”. Two-fifths (39.0%) disagreed with it. Third, nearly 47.3% of the respondents agreed that filibustering is a farce or political show played by lawmakers for increasing their public exposure and 28.0% disagreed. Three-fifths (59.4%) agreed that filibusters is a waste of public money which would disrupt the functioning of the government administration and 21.5% thought the opposite.