Reuters

BRASILIA (Reuters) - Embattled Brazilian President Michel Temer's popularity is sinking as the approval rating of his scandal-plagued government drops amid corruption allegations and a prolonged recession, a poll published Friday showed.

 

Temer took over from impeached leftist Dilma Rousseff in May, vowing to clean up government and revive a stalled economy.

 

But the sharp austerity measures he has pushed through Congress, along with graft accusations that have forced several leading members of his Cabinet and party to step down, are threatening Temer's political survival.

 

Pollster Ibope said the number of people who consider Temer's government "bad" or "terrible" rose to 46 percent from 39 percent in the previous survey carried out in early October, six weeks after he formally replaced Rousseff.

 

The proportion of those who rate Temer's government as "great" or "good" slipped to 13 percent from 14 percent, according to the poll.

Disapproval of the way Temer is governing has risen from 55 to 64 percent of respondents, the poll said.

Asked what were the main news headlines they most remembered, those surveyed cited protests against corruption and a 20-year public spending cap proposed by Temer and passed by Congress this week.

Millions of Brazilians have been thrown out of work by a severe recession that is expected to enter its third year in 2017 as Temer's efforts to restore business confidence in Latin America's largest economy falter due to political uncertainty.

Fueling the political crisis is a vast corruption scandal centered on state-run oil company Petrobras that has resulted in senior executives and politicians being jailed or investigated.

Temer has already lost four Cabinet ministers to corruption accusations.

He personally faces allegations from former executives of the Odebrecht engineering conglomerate that he asked the company for illegal campaign funding for his Brazilian Democratic Movement Party.

Temer has insisted the donations were legal and duly registered with electoral authorities.

The Ibope poll commissioned by the powerful industry lobby CNI surveyed 2,002 people between Dec. 1-4 and has a margin of error of two percentage points.

(Reporting by Anthony Boadle; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)