Latest Angus Reid poll, shows Canadians aren't prepared to solely blame our deficit on the global recession. The poll also asks the "coalition" question, possibly the last offering prior to this week's crescendo.
While an overwhelming majority of Canadians think the recession in the United States and global financial crisis are responsible for the deficit, the Conservative government is also on the hook, with 2/3rds of Canadians placing blame:
Canadians accept the global circumstance, but that situation doesn't provide the cover the government hoped. A large majority will accept the "wear it" narrative, a decidedly bad number for the government.
The poll also samples coalition opinion. On the question of a coalition government or an election (If the House of Commons votes against the budget, the Conservative minority government would fall. All things considered, which of these options would you prefer if the Conservative minority government is defeated?), the numbers favor an election- 48% would prefer an election, 38% a coalition, 14% unsure. The regional breakdowns show strong coalition support in Quebec, but all other regions decidedly against, including Ontario (50%-31%).
One interesting finding, despite this gap between a coalition and election, when the question turns to economic management, a coalition led by Ignatieff is much closer to the Conservatives. Harper only holds a 3 point lead over an Ignatieff led coalition on the question of boosting the economy (36-33%). The gap is only 5% on the question of getting us out of recession. These numbers are particularly bad for the Conservative, because the question specifically asks "a coalition government headed by Michael Ignatieff", and the findings are tight, despite the overall opinion of a coalition. Another indication that Harper is losing the battle of perceptions on the economy.