Millions Following Emergencies Act Commission. Most are Concluding Ottawa Had No Better Choice
November 4, 2022
ATTENTION PAID TO THE EMERGENCIES ACT COMMISSION
About 1 in 5 people (16%) say they have been following the commission hearings closely, and another 50% “a little” while 34% are not following it at all.
Conservative (21%), Liberal (20%), and NDP (16%) voters are about as likely to be following the Commission closely.
DID OTTAWA MAKE THE RIGHT DECISION IN USING THE EMERGENCIES ACT
The majority (63%) believe the federal government “made the best choice it could in the circumstances, to use that law to deal with the situation” with the Ottawa convoy occupation.
A majority in every province think it was the best choice possible, although the majority was slim at 53%-47% in the three prairie provinces. Large majorities of NDP (68%) and Liberal voters (83%) feel it was the best available choice while Conservative Party voters are split (46% best choice -54% bad choice).
REACTION TO EMERGENCIES ACT HEARINGS
Based on what they are seeing or hearing from the hearings and the testimony, 62% say they are becoming more inclined to think the government had no better choice, while 38% say they are becoming more inclined to think the government made the wrong choice. The patterns suggest that few minds are being changed – original views are being reinforced.
The testimony heard at the committee thus far doesn’t seem to be moving many people from their original perspective on the use of the Emergencies Act although it may be moving more people toward accepting the use of the Act than rejecting its use.
Of those who think the federal government made the best choice it could in the circumstances, 88% said the inquiry has made them more inclined to think the government had no better choice but to use the law while 12% are more inclined to think the government made the wrong choice.
In contrast, among those who felt the government made a bad choice to use the Emergencies Act, 18% say they are now more inclined to think the government had no better choice but to use that law while 82% are more inclined to think the government made the wrong choice.
Just as the Convoy generated a lot of attention last February, so too are the hearings about the use of the Emergencies Act that have attracted a lot of attention. So far, to this point in the proceedings (October 26th), the public assessment is not changing – most people supported the use of the Emergencies Act last winter and continue to think it was the best choice available.
The survey was conducted with 1,500 Canadian adults from October 22 to 26, 2022. A random sample of panelists were invited to complete the survey from a set of partner panels based on the Lucid exchange platform. These partners are typically double opt-in survey panels, blended to manage out potential skews in the data from a single source.
The margin of error for a comparable probability-based random sample of the same size is +/- 2.1%, 19 times out of 20.
The data were weighted according to census data to ensure that the sample matched Canada’s population according to age, gender, educational attainment, and region. Totals may not add up to 100 due to rounding.
This survey was paid for by Abacus Data Inc.
Abacus Data follows the CRIC Public Opinion Research Standards and Disclosure Requirements that can be found here: https://canadianresearchinsightscouncil.ca/standards/
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