Saturday, January 10, 2009

Leadership

Interesting shift in the NANOS poll on leadership, unlike the Ipsos poll last week, the gains Ignatieff makes on the "best PM" score don't come at the expense of Harper, but from erosion in the other leaders score:



Harper has maintained, even a uptick in Western Canada, while Ignatieff doubles the score of his predecessor, at the expense of Layton, Duceppe and May. The Ipsos poll showed Harper dropping 7 points against Ignatieff, although it also showed him gaining as the expense of other leaders.

The NANOS polls seems to suggest something of a consolidation around Ignatieff as the alternative. Dion considered so weak, people looked to other opposition leaders, to fill the void, they didn't like Harper, but they had little faith in the Liberal leader. Harper's advantage is still large, but not particularly striking in a historical sense, for a sitting PM. Ignatieff is in the game, and that's the realistic expectation.

11 comments:

The Rational Number said...

Last October when I was knocking on doors, a significant number of people said they didn't like Dion.

I'm sure these people knew they were voting for a local MP candidate, but the leader of the party mattered to them enough to affect their votes.

An Ipsos-Reid poll in mid-December suggested 51% of respondents made their choice that may (my non-expert interpretation of the result).

The best PM score could have a pretty big impact on a lot of voters.

This surprises me, but I choose based on policy and platform.

I'm running a poll (unscientifically, I'll admit) to see how people decide their vote.

Steve V said...

I've heard that sentiment before, on the door to door feedback. Some people discount leadership numbers, but in a campaign, if your leader isn't credible, you're handicapped, the policy and brand suffer.

You can't expect an opposition leader to best a sitting PM, all you want is for voters to see him as a credible alternative, formidable enough that you listen to the policy. In that sense, I'd be quite comfortable going into an election with these sort of leadership numbers.

bigcitylib said...

Next important number is fundraising figures. Did people dislike Dion so much they were unwilling to cut the party a cheque?

RuralSandi said...

My neighbour, who didn't vote because she couldn't bring herself to vote for any other party and couldn't vote for Dion said she pictures a leader at international events, like the G-8 for example, and she just couldn't picture Dion standing in the Rose Garden at the White House or any other event representing Canada - image? I don't know, but that's how she felt. She now says she sees Ignatieff representing Canada well, with class and statesmanship. She will support $$ the Liberals now and vote next time.

Steve V said...

BCL

The last quarter numbers should come out soon, but I suspece we'll get a better gauge for the first quarter of 2009.

Sandi

I heard a couple anecedotal examples, and it was pretty hard to try and "sell" the leader.

Anonymous said...

Keep in mind that any uptick in Harper's numbers in Alberta are entirely useless to him. He can't possibly win any more seats there. (Although with all the job losses happening there, there is hope for a few seats if we wait until spring)

Anonymous said...

Did people dislike Dion so much they were unwilling to cut the party a cheque?

Frankly, yes. Ive now personally taken out a Laurier club membership, to put my money where my mouth is, ever since Ignatieff became leader. It will still take a while for fundraising efforts to fully gear up but we should have a large uptick in 2009

-ITC

Anonymous said...

This is the defining characteristic between Canadian and American political systems. Here a vote for the party is automatically a vote for the leader while there the two are seperate and voters can chose a leader from one party and vote for the other in congress.

If we ever get silly enough to have an elected senate then we need to offset that with a leader elected seperately and move to the U.S. style of government. The senate is the only body preventing complete dictatership by our leader we have.

The latest couple of polls show clearly that leadership has probably the greatest effect on voting patterns in this country the same as any other country. You only have to remeber the anti-Martin, anti-Clarke, anti-Mulroney and anti-Trudeau elections of the last few decades to see that any leader has a best before date. Harpers one eighty change in tactics shows he knows his best before date is already past.

Unfortunately those of us who vote based on candidate and party platform are badly outnumbered by those who only vote on leadership and you only have to look around you to see how the rest of the world has left us behind as a result of not having a national goal and focus.

Mushroom said...

"Did people dislike Dion so much they were unwilling to cut the party a cheque?"

The people also didn't vote for Dion, this means the Grits are hurt big time in the federal funding formula.

I expect an uptick for the Grits fundraising wise, but not much. The Grits will be happy if it matches Layton. We are still approximately three years behind the NDP, especially in targeting donors and outreach.

Steve V said...

"I expect an uptick for the Grits fundraising wise, but not much. The Grits will be happy if it matches Layton. We are still approximately three years behind the NDP, especially in targeting donors and outreach."

I'm a bit more optimistic, by this time next year, people may be pleasantly surprised.

burlivespipe said...

I was at a riding party function last week where a few people were grumbling about the 'anti-democratic manner' that selected Ignatieff. One of them espoused how Ignatieff's people failed to support Dion during his reign; I noted, as a past Rae delegate in a riding where the delegates were predominantly for Dion, that I was one of but a handful of people from the riding who were Victory Club members -- that in fact many of those who supported Dion for leadership ended up failing to support him with money when it counted. That part of the discussion ended quickly.