Column: Poll numbers offer early look at federal campaign

Apparently there has been a pretty interesting shift in dynamics as to who people would vote for if the election was held now.

If polls are anything to go by in this marathon election campaign, British Columbians appear to be shunning the Conservative Party and looking seriously at Mulcair’s NDP.

An Insights West online poll was held between August 20 and 24 and targeted 815 adult British Columbians. Apparently there has been a pretty interesting shift in dynamics as to who people would vote for if the election was held now.

According to the poll, 41 per cent of decided voters would vote for the NDP. That’s an increase of six points since a poll conducted in May. The Liberal Party came in second at 24 per cent (one point less than previously) and the Conservatives at 22 per cent (a slide of seven points). The Green Party was in 4th place with 12 per cent (an increase of two points) of the surveyed sample.

True, polls are only a momentary snapshot of the mood of the moment. As parties falling behind are apt to point out, the only poll that counts is the one in the ballot box on voting day. But those who love numbers reach for them strategically.

The NDP’s lead was pretty consistent across genders and three age groups while the Conservatives got their best numbers from the 55 plus age group. Predictably, the Liberals picked up their best numbers from younger voters 35-54 years of age.

Metro Vancouver mirrored the provincial score with NDP clearly ahead at 43 per cent, Liberals with 25 per cent and the Conservatives with 23 per cent. But on Vancouver Island there was a healthy increase in support for the Greens from 20 per cent in May to 32 per cent in August putting them just seven points short of the NDP at 39 per cent.

We’re a lifetime away from polling day and 42 per cent said they could change their minds. Likely that will make things very fluid especially considering the poll found that 75 per cent of the British Columbians surveyed believe it’s time for a change of government, including 43 per cent who voted for the Conservative Party in the last election. In fact, 60 per cent said they would be very upset if the Harper government got another chance to form the government again.

Between August 7 and 10, Ipsos Reid conducted a poll on behalf of Global News to identify the major concerns that will influence how voters will cast their ballots. They polled a sample 2,022 Canadians.

The top priorities among Canadians included managing the economy 76 per cent), addressing the health care system (73 per cent), and creating jobs (also 73 per cent). Addressing the cost of living and keeping communities safe from crime made up the top five concerns of those polled. Ipsos-Reid said on their website that the Conservatives lead on addressing the economy and crime, the NDP leads on fixing the health care system and the rising cost of living while both the Conservatives and the NDP are tied on addressing the need to create jobs.

Insights West reported that the popular guy (or gal) as party leader according to British Columbians puts NDP Thomas Mulcair in the driver’s seat (55 per cent and up 3 points) followed by Green Party leader Elizabeth May (52 per cent, up 8 points). She is closely nudged by Liberal leader Justin Trudeau (51 per cent, up 5 points). Conservative Party leader Stephen Harper had the lowest number at just 28 per cent (a loss of 7 points).

Like many in the rest of the country, British Columbians see jobs and the economy as the most important issues followed by government accountability, health care, the environment, housing, poverty and homelessness.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Police lights
Chilliwack RCMP plan December campaign against impaired drivers

Police remind motorists that cannabis and prescription drugs can also affect driving ability

Kevin Davey with Heritage Village long-term care facility holds a bag open as Lucyanne Carruthers of Panago Pizza in Sardis stacks some of the 35 pizzas to be given to the seniors’ residence on Friday, Dec. 4, 2020. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
Pizzeria owner continues to bring free lunches to Chilliwack seniors in long-term care

Even during COVID, Lucyanne Carruthers of Panago has been giving pizza lunches to Heritage Village

Chilliwack General Hospital. (Jenna Hauck/ Progress file)
Chilliwack mother upset about son’s alleged suicide attempt after hospital discharge

Rhonda Clough said 34-year-old son suffering with bipolar disorder should have been kept in hospital

Downtown Chilliwack BIA executive director Kyle Williams promoting the buy local ‘Shopportunity’ program that launched mere days ago. (Screenshot)
Downtown Chilliwack Business Improvement Association parts ways with Kyle Williams

BIA president Ruth Maccan said the association ‘will have a new look in 2021’

An anonymous person has decorated a tree and posted a sign encouraging others to do the same on the Teapot Hill Trail, and Bill Wojtun shared the idea on Facebook. (Facebook photo)
Could Cultus Lake’s Teapot Hill become Holiday Hill this Christmas?

An anonymous person is encouraging people to decorate trees on the local trail

Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Dec. 6 to 12

Mountain Day, Dewey Decimal System Day and Lard Day are all coming up this week

Demonstrators, organized by the Public Fishery Alliance, outside the downtown Vancouver offices of Fisheries and Oceans Canada July 6 demand the marking of all hatchery chinook to allow for a sustainable public fishery while wild stocks recover. (Public Fishery Alliance Facebook photo)
Angry B.C. anglers see petition tabled in House of Commons

Salmon fishers demand better access to the healthy stocks in the public fishery

(Hotel Zed/Flytographer)
B.C. hotel grants couple 18 years of free stays after making baby on Valentines Day

Hotel Zed has announced a Kelowna couple has received free Valentines Day stays for next 18 years

Farmers raise slogans during a protest on a highway at the Delhi-Haryana state border, India, Thursday, Dec. 3, 2020. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau rejected the diplomatic scolding Canada’s envoy to India received on Friday for his recent comments in support of protesting Indian farmers. Tens of thousands of farmers have descended upon the borders of New Delhi to protest new farming laws that they say will open them to corporate exploitation. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Manish Swarup
Trudeau brushes off India’s criticism for standing with farmers in anti-Modi protests

The High Commission of India in Ottawa had no comment when contacted Friday

Montreal Alouettes’ Michael Sam is set to make his pro football debut as he warms up before the first half of a CFL game against the Ottawa Redblacks in Ottawa on Friday, Aug. 7, 2015. Sam became the first publicly gay player to be drafted in the NFL. He signed with the Montreal Alouettes after being released by St. Louis, but abruptly left after playing one game. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
Study finds Canada a ‘laggard’ on homophobia in sports

Among females, 44 per cent of Canadians who’ve come out to teammates reported being victimized

Nurse Kath Olmstead prepares a shot as the world’s biggest study of a possible COVID-19 vaccine, developed by the National Institutes of Health and Moderna Inc., gets underway Monday, July 27, 2020, in Binghamton, N.Y. U.S. biotech firm Moderna says its vaccine is showing signs of producing lasting immunity to COVID-19, and that it will have as many as many as 125 million doses available by the end of March. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Hans Pennink
Canada orders more COVID vaccines, refines advice on first doses as cases reach 400K

Canada recorded its 300,000th case of COVID-19 on Nov. 16

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Apartments are seen lit up in downtown Vancouver as people are encouraged to stay home during the global COVID-19 pandemic on Thursday, Dec. 3, 2020. British Columbia’s deputy provincial health officer says provincewide data show the most important area B.C. must tackle in its response to the COVID-19 pandemic is health inequity. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Marissa Tiel
Age, income among top factors affecting well-being during pandemic, B.C. survey shows

Among respondents earning $20,000 a year or less, more than 41 per cent reported concern about food insecurity

Grand Chief Doug Kelly, representing the Sto:lo Tribal Council, is one of five signatories on an op-ed issued Dec. 4, 2020 in response to Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond’s report: In Plain Sight Addressing Indigenous-specific Racism and Discrimination in B.C. Healthcare. (Submitted)
OP-ED: Fraser Health and Indigenous leaders respond to report on racism in healthcare

‘We remain committed to real change, ending racism in our system’

Most Read