The headlines for the Ipsos poll reads "Conservatives best party to deliver honest government:
• 28% of Canadians believe the Conservatives, if re-elected, would do the best job of “providing honest, open and trustworthy government.”
• 22% believe the NDP would do the best job of this.
• Just 15% say the Liberals would be best at providing honest, open and trustworthy government.
• 7% say the Bloc would be best.
• 29% don’t endorse any of the major parties as best to deliver this type of government.
The conclusions suggest a glaring omission. A sitting government second to "no one" on questions of trust, honesty and openness isn't "best", it's actually alarming. Voters opt for these issues over the economy by a massive margin, a result that flies in the face of all the conventional wisdom. The Conservatives don't want a focus on these issues, if any one doubts, note how their entire thrust to date is economic in nature. Despite the superficial headline, and it's arguments, this result is anything but good news for the Conservatives.
I'm not mimimizing the Liberals challenges, these results also show a radical brand change is required. Both this poll and the Nanos offering show Conservative weakness, in one form or another, and yet the Liberal aren't benefiting. The Ipsos poll partially explains, voters simply don't trust the Liberals, so despite the Conservative transgressions, they are somewhat immune, maintain almost by default. Despite this circumstance, we see once again that the Conservatives really aren't formidable, the party that ran on openness and accountability enjoys paltry support on this score, meaning opportunity exists. From the Liberal perspective, rather than discouraging, this result provides optimism, develop a bold, forward thinking argument and you might just pump fresh air into a stale brand. THEN, the hesitant attitude of the electorate can be addressed, and we can see direct co-relations, Conservative failing equate to Liberal gains. All you can ask for is a chance, Ipsos says our thrust has surprising resonance, but the messenger is lacking in credibility.
Nanos shows all the scandals are taking a bite out of the "Harper Government". Ipsos shows that Canadians actually do care about good government, it can be a central theme in an election. Ipsos shows that the current government barely enjoys 1 in 4 support on these good government questions, meaning a huge pool of discontent is available to alternative presentations. Conservatives can comfort themselves with "first" and still large leads, but I doubt anyone in the PMO is happy today with either poll, and that says a lot moving forward.