Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Poll: Conservatives and Liberals "In Virtual Tie"

Wow:
A new poll suggests Tory support is sliding over voter concern that Canada has become too cozy with the United States on Middle East policy.

The latest results by Decima Research, released to The Canadian Press, put the Conservatives and Liberals in a virtual tie nationally.

The Tories had 32 per cent support compared with 31 per cent for the Liberals and 16 per cent for the New Democrats.


But the Liberals widened their Ontario lead to 42 per cent of voter support compared with 33 per cent for the Conservatives, and have pulled in front of the Tories in Quebec for the first time since last winter's campaign.

The two parties had been neck-neck in Ontario as recently as mid-June.

"When we look at the combination of the alignment of the government with the current U.S. administration policy on the Middle East - and in particular with respect to the Lebanon-Israel conflict - it's reasonable to assume it's one of the factors that's driving Conservative support down in the near term," said Decima CEO Bruce Anderson.


Where to start? It's just one poll, but it most certainly is nothing but good news for the Liberals and confirmation that the Conservatives are fading. With the last batch of polls, we can now safely assume that Harper will wait until next year's budget before he even thinks about an election. The opposition is now emboldened, Harper's bullying tactics now demand a reality check.

I have always argued that Quebecer's flirtation with Harper was temporary. The simple fact remains, despite the overtures, Tory philosophy is at great odds with Quebec society and this can't help but manifest itself. Harper can micro-manage and manipulate all he wants, but history tells us that the agenda is always riddled with surprises. In this case, foreign policy has shown the uncensored Conservative position and people are simply rejecting it.

These results may be a bit of an outlier, but I am willing to bet we have some nervous Tory strategists tonight. Maybe we should just scrap the GST altogether?

5 comments:

Sir John A said...

I guess Harper didn't get the memo that Canadians overwhelming don't support Bush's policies. Republicans are running from Bush in droves for election survival and meanwhile our guy snuggles close. Go figure.

p. said...

Like when the RoadRunner gives Wile E. Coyote an anvil while he's suspended in mid air and about to start dropping. :-)

W.E. Coyote -> Harper

Anvil -> Bush II

poof!

burlivespipe said...

Let's not go crazy, but take the positive news for what it is -- strong indicators that despite some very soft media coverage, the public is seeing things they don't like in this new gov't.
Just a month ago the news was spinning the latest poll as 'heading to a majority'... Wonder how the Aspertames will demand their papers flip this story.
And it'll be nice to have some quiet on libblogs, at least the wilson61s and exnidippers will be in their bombshelters for a week or so, curled up in the fetal position...

Steve V said...

Agreed, the actual numbers may be debatable, but the trend is clear. Support is soft and somewhat volatile, which means Harper doesn't have the latitude he suggest.

Scotian said...

Steve:

Can't say this comes as any great surprise to me, but then I never thought the last election's increased support the CPC got was much more than a get the Libs out vote and not a support the CPC agenda vote. However, the CPC took it that way by their actions since then, as well as many of their online supporters as we have witnessed.

If I remember correctly Decima was also the most friendly pollster to the CPC, so if this is what that pollster is finding it leaves one wondering what the real support for the CPC is. The CPC has been touting it's decisiveness under the belief that like Americans Canadians prefer strong if wrong to more graduated and nuanced thinking. I think this just underscores the belief among many in the CPC that there is really little differences between Canadian and American society/culture. I've always maintained that was a false belief and that the differences while subtle are also profound, and I think this is just one more piece of evidence supporting that belief of mine.