Monday, February 15, 2010

Mixed Bag

I waiting for the NANOS leadership numbers to see if there has been any movement on this front. Angus Reid has shown very slight change for Ignatieff, Harper's numbers plummeting. Nanos tends to support the same thesis, which is a mixed bag from the Liberal perspective.

Ignatieff has basically flat lined on the best PM score, and the more informative cumulative leadership index. There is little evidence of Ignatieff gaining traction with voters, still mired in Dion terrority. Layton actually bests the Liberal leader, which we've also seen before. The key caveat here for the Liberals, this is the same polling sample which gave them a 4% rise on vote intention. It suggests people are moving to the Liberals, but their support is blunted by leadership "drag". These numbers also offer encouragement, in that we have a statistical tie, despite a large gap between leaders. The "nowhere but up" perspective has plenty of merit.

Harper takes a big hit in this poll, his leadership index is now at it's lowest level. A clear erosion in perceptions of Harper, more concerning when you look a the regionals. Harper falls a full 9% in Ontario, on the best PM question. Harper's numbers are fairly stable in the rest of the country, but it's a seismic drop in all important Ontario.

Kind of a mixed bag. Harper is hurting, but Ignatieff still has a wide credibility gap. I think Ignatieff has had a strong start to the year, but apparently that has yet to translate in any meaningful way.


Jesse said...

I don't think this is a huge surprise, given that even a lot of Liberals aren't so sure about Ignatieff. Particularly when you describe it as a "credibility gap", I'm not even sure how where I'd come down.

More credible than Harper, abso-freakin'-lutely. More of a leader than Harper? I don't think Harper's leading us anywhere, but I'm not real clear on where Ignatieff is leading us either.

And, more credible than Lightnin' Jack? I'd probably have to put that at a "maybe".

I mean by all this to say that I think there's work to be done.

Yappa said...

Voting for Jack Layton is easy, as there's so little chance the NDP could ever form the government.

I think Ignatieff could be a great PM, but he's not an easy sell. His strength is his deep grasp of the big issues. He could potentially solve some of the biggest issues plaguing us: the place of Quebec, the place of first nations, the relationship of Alberta, and so on.

But to sell him that way would leave an opening for the Conservatives to call him elitist and all that.

So I think we just need to be like water dripping on stone, let him slowly grow on people, and not worry about it these polls too much.

Oh yeah, and in the next election I hope the Liberal PR team comes up with a better ad than the lost-in-the-woods one.

DL said...

One thing I've noticed with Nanos is how often the leadership index seems not to be correlated with changes in vote intention. I've seen Ignatieff go up while Liberal support went down and I've seen Layton's numbers go down while NDP support goes up - all through the last election campaign there always seemed to be a bit of a disconnect between the two.

RuralSandi said...

Nanos leadership garbage is so unimportant. The opposition leader always scores badly.

Harper scored lower than Dion and Iggy when in opposition.

I don't see the point to this stupid question.

Steve V said...


True enough.

DL said...

I don't think its totally unimportant. It is a given that whoever is the incumbent PM will almost always have an edge over any challenger on these types of questions. Paul Martin was always way ahead of Harper when he was PM. Until you actually are PM, no one can picture you as being PM.

That being said, the trend line is still important and if Harper goes down as best PM even if still number one - it is often a leading indicator of what will happen to vote intention.

I think its interesting that Harper really took a hit on "most trustworthy"