Canada 2015: Voting Intentions in Canada

While voting intentions remain fairly stable, leadership numbers show a downward trend for Justin Trudeau

While some union leaders propose that their members vote “Anything But the Conservatives” in 2015, a significant portion of their members … would not listen! A quarter of unionized employees in Canada would vote Conservative and 38% are satisfied with the Harper Government (national average is 38%)

When looking at voting intentions as of February 2, 35% of decided voters would support the Liberals, 32% would vote Conservative and 20% would support the NDP. These figures are all within one percentage point from the voting intentions we measured in late November. When looking at regional figures, we see that 1) the Liberals have a commanding lead in Atlantic Canada; 2) the leading NDP in Quebec see the Liberals being only two points behind; 3) the Liberals have a small lead in Ontario as the NDP keeps dropping support in Ontario, 4) Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta still deliver comfortable leads for the Conservatives; and 5) BC could provide a tight three way race. In terms of overall satisfaction with the government, results are almost identical to our pre-Holiday poll in late November, as 38% of Canadians are satisfied with the Conservative government’s performance, while 55% are dissatisfied.

If voting intentions and overall satisfaction remained fairly stable over the past four months, leadership numbers are slowly moving. When asking Canadians who would make the best PM, Justin Trudeau drops from 28% to 23%, while Stephen Harper remains stable at 25%. While the difference between the two candidates is not statistically significant, symbolically, this would be the first time in our polling that the incumbent PM is in first place since Justin Trudeau became the leader of the Liberal Party of Canada.

One interesting twist in our poll this time, was to look at how answers to our tracking questions would change if the respondent works in the private versus the public sector and if that person is a unionized employee or not. Results are very interesting. Liberal numbers do not really change whether a respondent is unionized or not, and work in the public or private sectors of our economy. It is when we look at Conservative and NDP numbers that we find interesting results.

  • While this would not likely please union leadership, 24% of unionized employees across Canada say they would likely support the Conservatives. One-quarter (25%) of public sector employees in Canada, despite cutback in the Federal public service, would vote Conservative and close to one third (31%) of private sector unionized workers would support the Conservatives. Lastly, even among public sector unionized employees, the Conservatives would garner the support of close to a quarter of them (22%). It is worth noting as well that 38% of unionized employees say they are satisfied with the work of the Conservative government, a figure identical to the national average.
  • Only 23% of unionized workers in Canada said they would likely support the NDP. Given the history between the union movement and the NDP, this is hardly positive news for the party.

Christian Bourque, Executive Vice-President and Partner at Leger, has over 20 years of experience in market and public opinion research. Christian also sits on the national board of the Marketing Research and Intelligence Association of Canada (MRIA), where he also acts as a lecturer for some of the association’s training courses. Christian has also frequently served as an expert witness in Court where survey evidence was presented.

Sébastien Dallaire

Sébastien Dallaire is Vice President, Public Affairs, at Léger. Sébastien possesses more than 15 years of experience in public opinion research and is a highly-respected public opinion analyst with provincial and national media outlets. Sébastien also has many years of university teaching experience in research methods and is a key methodologist for Léger’s major clients. He has won numerous distinguished research awards and distinctions and has published academic research articles in both official languages.

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