Volodymyr Zelenskiy, Ukrainian actor and candidate in the upcoming presidential election, hosts a comedy show at a concert hall in Brovary, Ukraine, Friday, March 29, 2019. Zelenskiy now surging ahead of both Tymoshenko and Poroshenko in the presidential context according to polls. (AP Photo/Efrem Lukatsky)

Comedian leads presidential polling in Ukraine

March 30, 2019 - 7:32 am

KIEV, Ukraine (AP) — A comedian who's never held political office tops the public opinion polls ahead of Ukraine's presidential election, but even he appears to be falling far short of enough support to win in the first round.

Ukrainians on Sunday will choose from among 39 candidates for a president they hope can guide the country of 42 million out of troubles including endemic corruption, a seemingly intractable war with Russia-backed separatists in the country's east and a struggling economy.

President Petro Poroshenko is seeking another term, but a poll released Friday by the Kiev International Institute of Sociology showed him with the support of just 13.7 percent of the voters.

Volodymyr Zelenskiy, who shot to national prominence by playing the role of the president in a television comedy, topped the poll at 20.9 percent.

AP Editorial Categories: