Support for Chilean President Sebastian Piñera rose to new highs in October after the dramatic rescue of 33 trapped miners, a poll showed Tuesday, strengthening his hand as he pushes his first budget through Congress.
Leading pollster Adimark GfK said Piñera's approval ratings reached 63% in October, up from 46% in July, before a collapse at a copper mine trapped workers below ground for 69 days until a successful government rescue.
Piñera's approval rating was 53% in the pollster's September survey.
The October rise is strongly related to the rescue of the 33 miners trapped in the San Jose Mine, an event that took up the news agenda during the month, the polling agency said in its monthly report.
The president's surging popularity has already helped him pass legislation raising royalties paid by mining companies in the world's top copper producer.
With his public approval at its highest point since he took office in March, Piñera's next test is the 2011 budget under debate in Congress. His proposal would increase fiscal spending slower than projected economic growth in an effort to keep pressure off an appreciating peso.