Thursday, January 14, 2010

Harper Quickly Losing The Elitist Vote

Three polls out yesterday and today, all showing some erosion in Conservative support:

Angus Reid (Jan 12-13, n = 1077 online)

CPC 34%
Lib 28%
NDP 19%
BQ 9%
Green 8%

Strategic Counsel (Jan 5-8, n = 2168 online & phone)

CPC 31%
Lib 30%
NDP 18%
BQ 9%
Green 10%

Ekos (Jan 6-12, n = 3730 demon dialed)

CPC 30.9%
Lib 29.3%
NDP 15.3%
BQ 10.2%
Green 11.9%
Other 2.3%

You know, I honestly didn't expect there to be much backlash to this prorogation thing. And maybe it's just temporary. But, for the moment at least, it certainly seems to be having an impact.

Now, it bears noting that the Liberals still can't crack 30%, so it's probably a little premature to start measuring the curtains at 24 Sussex. Ignatieff still needs to give voters a reason to vote for him, and I don't think "I'll prorogue less" is going to form the backbone of a winning campaign platform.

If you want to look beyond the horse race numbers, Angus Reid has a more thorough poll out that looks at prorogation, the effectiveness of the latest Liberal ads, and impressions of the leaders. (Which is a lot of fun - did you know that 3% of Canadians find Harper and Ignatieff exciting? I would love to meet these 3% of Canadians and take them on a roller coaster or something - it would probably do them a bit of good.)

On prorogation, around half of voters are at least paying some attention (up from last week), with the number paying close attention doubling from 11% to 20%. For procedural politics, that's a pretty high number.

44% strongly disagree with Harper's decision to prorogue, with the most common belief being that Harper did it out of self-interest. If he did, it's safe to say it hasn't exactly turned out that way, now has it?

UPDATE: Decima confirms the trend: 34-30.



  • Well, I seem to be in the minority with this opinion. But I'm actually not surprised at the response.

    I just don't see how the conservatives could gleefully and successfully paint Ignatieff as an "arrogant opportunist" for wanting to thrust the country into an election due to the precarious nature of the economy and the important work to be done. Then a few months later just "suspend" government, canceling half of your own agenda items, and only offering a myriad of changing excuses, none of them particularly compelling or convincing.

    I'm relieved that the public is noticing, but I'm not particularly surprised. Canadians put up with a lot, but the recognize hypocrisy when it's tossed in their faces in rather arrogant fashion.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6:55 p.m.  

  • Nice to have the results all in one place. Thank you. One suggestion: include the margin of error for each poll.

    By Blogger Chrystal Ocean, at 8:55 p.m.  

  • Look at where the backlash is - this in part explains why it is so large. Harper's decline is biggest in BC and Alberta, relative to the 2008 election. He is actually up in Quebec, relative to some recent polls.

    The backlash was large because Harper pissed off old-time Manning fans that loved that word Refooorm (especially if the word democratic was attached). Go to freedominion (if you have a strong stomach) - they aren't exactly cheering.

    The pundocracy can't understand this (hence the jibber jabber about the regionals being "off"), because they assumed that "the west wants in" was a power-grab, rather than an attempt to change our institutions.

    Instead the focus is on the growth of the facebook group - as if we didn't already know that Harper was disliked by young non-Tories. This fits the usual story, but doesn't explain the size of the Tory drop in the polls.

    The implications of this are important as well. Harper won't lose seats in Alberta, but he will lose volunteers and money. BC will cost him, and elsewhere, while the number of folks threatening to sit home are small, they are people he desperately needs to turn out in the next election.

    I see only one option for Harper, and that is to make sure the next budget changes the channel. There is an impending 19 or so billion dollar structural deficit. If Harper proposes a budget that makes deep cuts he can re-galvanize his base. A move like that won't be popular, but it may be popular amongst the 35% or so of Canadians Harper needs to yet win another minority.

    By Blogger french wedding cat, at 9:28 p.m.  

  • Note: According to Decima, the Liberals just cracked the 30% barrier.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:54 p.m.  

  • Well, as polls are concrete proof of what will happen in an election, the Liberals will be gunning for a spring take-down of the government right?
    Events in Haiti have already pushed prorogue off the map. The budget and the Olympics are next.
    What will be interesting to see is if the Liberal party stenographers at the CBC and Toronto Star can blame the earthquake on Harper.

    By Blogger nuna d. above, at 12:05 p.m.  

  • It's hold to be too emboldened vis-a-vis Liberal election chances when they're still polling in Dion territory.

    By Anonymous Deb, at 12:27 p.m.  

  • This comment has been removed by the author.

    By Blogger Paul, at 7:07 p.m.  

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