Sunday, August 23, 2015

NDP leads in polls with Conservatives trailing and Liberals third

The recent CBC poll tracker results show that the NDP continues to lead both in popular vote and in seats it is projected to win.
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The results from August 19 are from an average of a number of polls. The Conservatives have 29.2 per cent of the vote. This is down slightly from the last polls. The NDP were at 33.8, up 0.3 percent from last time. The Liberals were up 0.8 percent to 27.5 putting them close to the Conservatives. The separatist Bloc Quebecois was at 3.9 per cent a slight gain from earlier. The Green Party was at 4.7 percent down 1.1 percent.
The NDP would win the most seats, 132, but far from the 170 needed to form a majority government. The Conservatives would win 116 with the Liberals still quite a ways behind at 89. The Bloc Quebecois would win no seats and the Green Party just one. A regional breakdown is available at the poll tracker website.
We now have polls from Abacus Data and Angust Reid on Canadians' reaction to the Mike Duffy trial. Duffy a former Conservative Senator is facing numerous charges having to do with Senate expenses and other issues.
The polls show that almost one in four Canadians are following the trial closely. Only fifteen percent of those polled think that Harper acted properly in the Abacus poll, with a few more 20 percent in the Angus Reid poll. In the Reid poll over half, 56 percent, said the trial had made their opinion of Harper worse. While many of these voters had already decided they were going to vote Liberal or NDP, a significant number of soft Conservative supporters were negatively influenced by the trial. Soft Conservative voters are those considering voting for the party but not yet committed.
The Abacus Data poll found that a quarter of soft Conservative supporters now believe that Harper acted improperly and 20 percent said that the trial made them less likely to vote Conservative. One quarter of the group said they did not believer Harper's version of events in the Angus Reid poll, and another 42 per cent did not know whether they should believe him or not. Slightly less than a third said that the trial had caused them to have a worse opinion of Harper. The Harper view that the scandal is limited to the former PM's chief of staff Nigel Wright and Mike Duffy is rejected by 62 percent of those polled by Angus Reid. They thought more in the PMO were involved, that there was a deeper scandal. 23 percent of soft Conservatives also took this view. Further doubt was cast on Harper's version of events by Benjamin Perrin a former legal adviser to the PMO. Perrin said that he believed that Harper knew the full details of a plan to reimburse Duffy for his expenses and mislead the public about what was happening. It remains to be seen if the trial has any lasting effect over a long campaign with the election taking place on October 19.
If you are tired of all the mainstream parties in some constituencies you can vote for minor parties. As of August 18th there were 85 Libertarians running. The Christian Heritage Party is fielding 22 candidates. There are also 5 from the Pirate Party, 3 from the Rhinoceros, and one lonely Communist.

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