By David Akin
OTTAWA – Canadians seem to have little in the way of buyer’s remorse when it comes to the radically re-shaped House of Commons they elected on May 2, a new poll done exclusively for Sun News Network shows.
A healthy majority of Canadians are “very satisfied” or “somewhat satisfied” with the idea of an NDP official Opposition; the Liberals as the “third party” in Parliament; the elimination of the Bloc Quebecois as an official party in the House of Commons; and the election of the country’s first-ever Green Party MP.
But, just as they were during the election campaign, Canadians remain sharply divided when it comes to their satisfaction with the idea of a majority Conservative government, according to the poll by Abacus Data Inc.
Abacus found 46% were somewhat or very satisfied with the majority Conservative government, while 41% were somewhat or very unsatisfied with that particular result.
Voter support for the Conservatives remains at 40%, Abacus found, which is the same level of popular support Stephen Harper’s party received on May 2.
But since May 2, NDP popular support has grown to 33% from 31% on election day. Meanwhile, Liberal popular support continues to shrink, down to 16% from 19% on election day.
The news of sagging Liberal support comes out the day after the national party selected Ontario MP Bob Rae as its interim leader. Rae, in Ottawa Wednesday, acknowledged his top job will be trying to find a way for his party to re-establish itself with Canadians.
Abacus surveyed 1,544 Canadians randomly selected from its online panel of more than 150,000 Canadians. The margin of error, which measures sampling variability, is comparable to 2.5 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.
In the province of Quebec, where the post-election story focused heavily on the frequently unknown, often inexperienced NDP MPs elected there, voters appear to be prepared to give there new federal representatives the benefit of the doubt, said Abacus CEO David Coletto.
“There doesn’t seem to be much buyer’s remorse in Quebec,” Coletto said. “Voters in Quebec seem to be giving the NDP a chance with Parliament set to resume early in June.”
In that province, the NDP continues to enjoy the support of 43% of decided voters. Though it has just four MPs in the House of Commons, the Bloc Quebecois has the support of 22% while the Conservatives are at 19% and the Liberals are 13%.
Parliament resumes on June 2. When it last met in April, the Conservatives had a minority government; the Liberals were the official opposition; the BQ had 50 seats; and the NDP was the fourth party.
On May 2, Canadians gave the Conservatives their majority, but also sent back more than 100 NDP MPs to make it the official Opposition. The Liberals were decimated, posting their worst showing in history while just four MPs now carry the Bloc Quebecois banner.