Friday, May 18, 2007

Bizarre New Poll

Ipsos has a new poll out, which makes little sense:
Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s minority Conservatives regained a tenuous lead of 36 per cent, a five-point increase over last week.

With the Liberals at 32 per cent, the New Democratic Party at 14 per cent, the Green party at seven per cent, and the Bloc Quebecois at nine per cent nationally.

Can anyone possibly cobble together one coherent argument to explain a Tory bounce? With all due respect, and partisanship aside, this result is ridiculous.

Want more proof? If you had to pick one other politician who has had a worse week than Harper, who would it be? The easy answer, Duceppe. Well according to Ipsos, Bloc support up as well:
The data showed the Bloc was up four points over the previous week, even though the poll was conducted as Bloc Leader Gilles Duceppe was widely mocked for his about-face on seeking the provincial Parti Quebecois leadership.

The nonsense continues with the regional breakdowns:
Conservatives recovered most of a significant decline in support in British Columbia and Alberta, recorded last week in the wake of the government’s climate change policy announcement of mandatory reductions in pollution and greenhouse gas emissions.

Last week Ipsos had the Tories down 13 points in Alberta, and 19 points in British Columbia, which was hard to fathom. This week, they have recovered, which tells me that it is a false bounce, because the baseline was unreliable. Volatility is one thing, but these wild swings put the entire poll into question. As I've said before, Ipsos should just forget about the regionals, because they simply lack credibility.

I would argue even a Tory loyalist would have a hard time believing these results. The only reasonable argument, Harper benefited from Duceppe's gaffe, but you can't even go there, because the Bloc is up in Quebec. I feel completely confident in saying subsequent polls, from other outfits, will show this is a clear outlier.

UPDATE

Well what the hell do I know? Strategic Council also has a poll, which again shows the Bloc up in Quebec, despite Duceppe's blunders:
The poll conducted by the Strategic Counsel for The Globe and Mail and CTV News places the Tories three percentage points head of Stéphane Dion's Liberals, 34-31. The NDP, buoyed by gains in the West, rose three percentage points to 16 per cent.

The Liberal lead in Ontario shrank to three percentage points, and although the Grits regained second place in Quebec in a see-saw battle with the Tories, the first-place Bloc Québécois also increased slightly despite Leader Gilles Duceppe's flip-flop on seeking the leadership of the Parti Québécois.
Quebec:

Liberals: 24 per cent (+2)
Conservatives: 20 per cent (-6)
NDP: 6 per cent (-3)
Bloc Quebecois: 41 per cent (+5)
Green Party: 9 per cent (+2)

West(whatever that means):

Conservatives: 42 per cent (-8)
Liberals: 22 per cent (+3)
NDP: 26 per cent (+8)
Bloc Quebecois: N/A
Green Party: 10 per cent (-3)



The last SC poll had the Conservatives at 36, Libs 30, NDP 13, Greens 12, Bloc 9.

18 comments:

UWHabs said...

Polls are semi-random. They go up and down. I'd imagine the last few polls had the Cons slightly underrepresented, and this one may have them a few points higher.

Especially as we head to the summer season, I'd take polls less and less reliably from now on.

Scott Tribe said...

Well then, I'll be really interested to see the next set of polls after the revelations of the "lets screw up Parliament" manual.

Mushroom said...

tIf the Cons fall to the high 20s and the Liberals go up to the high 30s, it is game, set, and match for Harper.

I attribute it to one major factor. A quiet week in Afghanistan and the media tiring of the detainees issue. Harper is basing his leadership as a wartime leader. He can only go far on this perception, before it becomes a millstone.

lance said...

"Last week Ipsos had the Tories down 13 points in Alberta, and 19 points in British Columbia, which was hard to fathom. This week, they have recovered, which tells me that it is a false bounce, because the baseline was unreliable."

Steve, I don't understand this statement, can you clarify?

To me it reads: last weeks West was wonked because it's so different from the week before; this week is wonked because it's similar to two weeks ago. That doesn't compute.

Cheers,
lance

Lycan Stark said...

If the Cons fall to the high 20s and the Liberals go up to the high 30s, it is game, set, and match for Harper.

Gee, they really do keep you in the dark and feed you shit, don't they Mushroom.

Oh yes, the leader that united the right after years of infighting and is now a sitting Prime Minister with personal leadership numbers that absolutley blow Dion out of the water is going to be a goner. The leader of a Party that is smashing the Liberals in fundraising is going to be a goner because the Tories switch polling places with the Liberals between elections.

Go back to sleep Mushroom.

Gayle said...

Maybe we should not be surprised at the Bloc numbers. We Anglos can analyze this to death, but maybe Quebec does not vote Bloc just because of the leader, but rather because of what the Bloc stands for.

Lycan Stark said...

My take on the Bloc numbers is that rather than Duceppe's blunder hurting him, the fact that he admitted candidly that he made a mistake is making him look more genuine and real.

KC said...

I think trying to draw inferences from changes from poll to poll is silly. Polls go up and down, inconsistent polls are released all the time. The only thing of any value that can be taken from polls is 1) long term trends, and 2) a rough idea of where each party stands after many polls are averaged.

Mushroom said...

lycan stark,

Like many Con bloggers, you reduce yourself to insulting the commentator while rejecting the other arguments that is being advanced. Your comment can be attributed to something like Harper is good, Dion sucks etc.

I just merely my interpretation of the poll numbers. Please offer something that is more discussion worthy.

Steve V said...

"To me it reads: last weeks West was wonked because it's so different from the week before; this week is wonked because it's similar to two weeks ago. That doesn't compute."

The poll concludes the Tories have regained support in the west, based on last week's results. All I am saying, that is a false conclusion, because last week's massive drop isn't credibility. If you take out last week, and go back to the one prior, compare it with this one, it's about the same, which seems reasonable. Last week was clearly bad polling, and Ipsos shouldn't bother to publish rogue findings, and then turn around the next week and conclude we have a bounce, based on bad prior results.

lycan

Apparently you are asleep, if you don't see the Tory erosion. BTW, I would take those leadership numbers as yesterday's news, they were done when Harper was high in the polls, methinks the gap is less now.

Anonymous said...

Does anyone else think that lycan sounds like Gob from Arrested Development?

"Yeah, like the guy in the $5000 suit is gonna talk to the guy in the $500 suit..."

Anonymous said...

its the same old story..whenever there is going to be a break ipsos comes out with a poll a week before with the tories down and then just at the breakthey come out with the tories ahead so they can go home with their heads up high...its all a bunch of conservative bull..as for strategic council remember the 42 percent poll...thats all I need to say about that...rite now being a liberal liberal is not a happy time for me..I am not impressed with dion and dislike kennedy for screwing up this party ...cant stomach Hall findlay or coderre...and please dont mentionRAE in my vicinity...I did not back anyone at the convention but feel now, after watching him closely, we missed out and probably will pay dearly for not electing iggy as out leader....I do believe Rae and Kennedy are trying to trip up dion and he is giving them lots of leeway...signed just an ole folk

Steve V said...

"I do believe Rae and Kennedy are trying to trip up dion and he is giving them lots of leeway"

Anon, I think you are buying into a media creation, as it applies to Kennedy. Let's not forget, Kennedy has been here before, with McGuinty, in the aftermath of that convention. If Kennedy is acting as suggested, wouldn't there be a pattern while with McGuinty. On the contrary, Kennedy was by all accounts the good soldier, who fell in line and showed no personal ambitions. Why would that suddenly change now?

I think there are Kennedy loyalists in the party, primarily because he represented something new and the idea of reform. Those concepts don't disappear after the convention, so it is natural for that agenda to still exist. That doesn't translate into conspiracies, and Kennedy actively working to undermine. As a matter of fact, the "senior" Liberals who seem upset at Kennedy, might really be the ones with the hidden agenda and they are trying to undermine a potential rival. I'm prepared to give Kennedy the benefit of the doubt, because the record is there and it is analogous.

Anonymous said...

Anyone else out there tired of Kennedy being put on a pedestal. I'm not saying he's involved in any conspiracy - actually I think the MSM are overreacting and overplaying this issue. But, please, stop putting this guy on a pedestal. He's not God.

Anonymous said...

I guess it's time to wait for the SES poll. They seem to wait until there are issues before doing one and perhaps that's why they're more accurate.

If SES polls agree with the others - then Canadians truly aren't paying attention.

Steve V said...

"Anyone else out there tired of Kennedy being put on a pedestal.'

I know I'm tired of the inference that any positive comment equates to god status.

Anonymous said...

Kennedys' speech about renewal of the party gets my dander up...it was the cons from the mulroney party that started the sponsorship scandal not JC or paul martin...Jc and paul martin are responsible for programs like the ones the pm announced in waterloo yesterday...that came from jean and paul...he lets us to believe that the things the cons say are true....we dont need his kind of renewal...that is the one thing I can say I like about dion ..he stands up for the old liberal party ..it was a good party..not this bull you are hearing about daily...renewal like justin shooting off his mouth..we dont need it...bring back the old guard....they were good for canada....the guy who they are blasting who was entitled to his entitlements turned the mint around and countries from all over the world are buying their coins from us...that is why we have such a big overload of monies in the kitty..it is not from flaherty...it is from the moves JC and Paul martin made...lets stop listening to this kennedy renewal bull and give them a pat on the back...sorry somedays I forget words and spelling..gramps

Steve V said...

"he stands up for the old liberal party"

You mean the top heavy, elitist, entitled bunch that Canadians will never support again? The Liberal Party desperately needs renewal, and I would add the new fundraising laws demand a grassroots approach, as opposed to the old boys network of big donors.