Possible but not likely since among other things Layton has told the Conservatives he does not want to defeat them. Maybe he did that at the request of Ignatieff so Iggy can bellow like a hurt bull about the outrageous nonaction of the Tories on EI. Iggy wants to raise more money and also raise his profile while letting Harper's ratings sink in the slough of depression and then he will try to get the opposition to join him, the gang of three, to defeat the Conservatives by this fall.
Minority government possible for Liberals, poll suggests
EKOS survey indicates Ignatieff's party would clip Harper Tories in election tomorrow
Last Updated: Monday, June 1, 2009
News of the federal deficit topping $50 billion appears to have put the Liberals slightly ahead of the Conservatives in a poll asking Canadians how they would vote if an election were held tomorrow.
The EKOS poll released Monday exclusively for the CBC suggests the Liberals would likely squeak into a minority government.
The poll found 33.5 per cent of respondents would vote Liberal. Another 32.3 per cent said they would vote Conservative, and 15.1 per cent said they would vote NDP.
The poll of 10,896 randomly selected Canadians was conducted between May 7 and May 28.
Up until the deficit news of May 26, the Conservatives appeared to have been benefiting from the fact some more prosperous Canadians, perhaps with an eye more to the stock market than the job market, were becoming more optimistic about the economic future.
However, their advantage among the more prosperous appeared to vanish after Finance Minister Jim Flaherty revealed Ottawa expected a budgetary shortfall of $50 billion for the 2009-10 fiscal year that will end in March 2010.
"The overall picture these numbers paint is slightly more positive for the Liberals," EKOS president Frank Graves said. "But the situation is clearly quite volatile, and [none of the parties] could force an election right now confident that they would win, much less form a majority."
Rounding out the poll, the Green party was the party of choice for 10.4 per cent of respondents, followed by 8.7 per cent who favoured the Bloc Québécois.
Harper preferred as PM choice
The news is not all encouraging for the Liberals, whose leader, Michael Ignatieff, trailed Conservative Leader Stephen Harper when respondents were asked who would make the best prime minister.
Thirty per cent chose Harper, with 26 per cent opting for Ignatieff and 44 per cent saying neither would be the best prime minister.
The poll also suggests that Canada's regions are in line with historical voting patterns, with Alberta strongly supporting the Tories, and Ontario "still a battleground," but looking better for the Liberals.
"One place where things are changing dramatically is in Quebec, where the Tory charge of recent years has come to a disastrous end," said Graves.
"The Liberals are once again becoming an important force in Quebec, growing notably in popularity among French speakers."
This is the largest-ever survey of Canadians' voting intentions and the first of a series of polls to be released on CBCNews.ca in the coming months. The margin of error is plus or minus one percentage point, 19 times out of 20.
The polls will be released every Thursday, starting on June 11.