Voters will likely avoid a summer election: poll
CTV.ca News Staff
Published Friday, May 18, 2007 11:26PM EDT
A new poll suggests Canadians will avoid a summer federal election, with no party enjoying the level of support needed to form a majority government.
When Canadians were asked who they would vote for, 34 per cent said Conservative and 31 per cent said Liberal.
"The Liberal numbers have stood still since February," Peter Donolo of the Strategic Counsel polling firm told CTV.ca on Friday.
"What happened here is the Conservative momentum seems to have dissipated. The momentum, which was growing in winter and peaked in March, has been sliding since then."
The Strategic Counsel conducted the poll between May 14 and 17 for CTV News and The Globe and Mail.
None of the parties have shown a dramatic change in support for the past several weeks (percentage-point change from a March 10-13 poll in brackets):
- Conservatives: 34 per cent (-2)
- Liberals: 31 per cent (none)
- NDP: 16 per cent (+1)
- Bloc Quebecois: 10 per cent (+1)
- Green Party: 9 per cent (-1)
In previous surveys the Conservatives have reached a high of 39 per cent, most recently in a March 20-21 poll, but the party has so far been unable to maintain that level of support.
Donolo said the dissipation of the Conservative momentum seems rooted in two places in particular: Quebec and Western Canada, where the Tories have seen a decline in support to the main benefit of the NDP.
"The Liberal numbers have really remained pretty constant since they came down from the post-convention boost, when they briefly led the Conservatives for two months," Donolo said.
In Quebec, when voters were asked who they would vote for, almost a quarter said Liberal (percentage-point change from a March 10-13 poll in brackets):
- 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)
Donolo said the Liberals and Conservatives are fighting it out in Quebec to be the Bloc alternative.
"They are essentially splitting the remaining vote," he said. "We would probably see strong Liberal support in Montreal. And elsewhere in the province, the Conservatives are probably positioned more effectively as the alternative to the Bloc."
In the West, the Conservatives have dropped eight points over the past month (percentage-point change from a March 10-13 poll in brackets):
- 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 poll was conducted between May 14 and 17 by The Strategic Counsel for CTV and The Globe and Mail.
- One thousand respondents were sampled nationally, and the margin of error is plus or minus 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.
- In Quebec, 247 people were sampled with a margin of error of 6.3 percentage points.
- In the West, 297 people were sampled with a margin of error of 5.7 percentage points.
- Results are based on tracking among a proportionate national sample of Canadians 18 years of age or older.