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Nanos poll puts Liberals in statistical lead.

Courtesy of Warren:

The Nanos Research survey, provided exclusively to The Canadian Press, suggests the Liberals have moved into a virtual tie with the governing Tories. Liberal support stood at 34 per cent, one point ahead of the Conservatives and up eight points from the Liberals’ dismal showing in the Oct. 14 election under the leadership of Stephane Dion. The poll suggests the Liberal resurgence was particularly pronounced in Quebec, where the party vaulted into the lead with 39 per cent support to 29 per cent for the Bloc Quebecois, 17 per cent for the Tories and 14 per cent for the NDP. The telephone poll of 1,003 Canadians was conducted Jan. 3-7 and is considered accurate within 3.1 percentage points 19 times in 20. A voter honeymoon with Ignatieff, who was hastily installed as leader last month, appeared to be the driving force behind the Liberal bounce.

What does that spell for whether a potential coalition government is more or less likely if the polls hold and the government is defeated over their Budget? Does that mean the Canadian public now see a coalition government with Ignatieff at the helm as more feasible then with Stephane Dion? Your guess is as good as mine. Remember too that Stephane Dion also got a 1-2 month voter honeymoon after he was was first selected as Liberal leader with good polling results, so to Liberal supporters.. don’t get carried away yet, but that is an encouraging poll.


12 comments to Nanos poll puts Liberals in statistical lead.

  • Roll Tide

    If Liberals want to get excited over another Nanos poll, then lets have an election!

    Harper can then play the new “coalition card”
    and cruise to another victory.

  • Greg

    Actually, Charest was trying to get in under the economic wire. We are now in the midst, his argument was leadership heading in. It really wasn’t much different that Harper, force an election, before it gets too bad, before you have to wear it all.

  • Savant

    What’s funny is that a poll released on the same day by Ipsos Reid showed something entirely different.

    As they say, the only poll that matters is the one on election day.

  • CWTF

    Jean Charest. Called an election for the sole reason of “in these economic hard times we can’t afford any more partisan squabbling so we require a majority to get done what needs to be done to moove our economy forward”.
    As you state it was a slim majority – he also called the election when his party was high in the poles.

    It was viewed more with cynicism and a Harper-Like move… Voter turnout was low…

    Sorry, I don’t buy your interpretation Mike…

  • Looks to me like Canadians are going to build an Liberal/NDP coalition House.

  • Mike

    Steve: Jean Charest. Called an election for the sole reason of “in these economic hard times we can’t afford any more partisan squabbling so we require a majority to get done what needs to be done to moove our economy forward”. He won one and it would have been much larger had Harper not gone on his separatist bashing in the last week, but a majority is a majority and it was done with some pretty awful economic data in the background and there was the issue of alleged mismanagement of the Caisse as well.

    I believe Calgary Grit did a post on this awhile back though reviewing elections over the past few decades and concluded the record of incumbents in economic hard times is somewhat mixed.

    But Harper would insane to try to do what Charest did with these numbers but we’ll see where we are at budget time or in the month or two after what will likely be a popular “Liberal-like” budget. If he’s polling high 30’s I wouldn’t be surprised in the slightest if does as exactly as Charest did. In which case it would work out exactly as how Chantal Hebert predicted, but for now it appears less likely.

  • I think this poll shows that Canadians prefer an Ignatieff minority government over a Harper one. Coalition is always a possibility in Parliament – not just between these two parties… Any wise PM would always keep that in mind in a minority situation.

    I think the coalition should be kept in the background as a last minute “hail-Mary” if Harper squeaks another minority through. I think if he engineers his own defeat, instead of a formal coalition, we simply “protect” various Liberal and NDP seats (don’t run against each other), then reclaim any seats that the Cons won due to the vote split on the left. Any seats the NDP were 2nd, we don’t run against them (in “winnable” ridings – mostly on the Prairies). Any seats where we were second (only in “winnable” areas), we run and they don’t…

    We don’t need a coalition to knock Harper off. We can go to the polls, then cherry-pick the best, winnable ridings for each party. The NDP would pick up several Prairie seats, and the Liberals would make several gains in BC, Ontario, Quebec, and the Atlantic…

  • I don’t dispute that Harper will use a “coalition”, which in and of itself tells us that it’s a dog politically, for the opposition. That said, I don’t see the argument carrying much weight, particularly with Ignatieff, and even moreso when he rejects the coalition argument. I mean, there are some pretty simple counters, especially if Ignatieff does the “best for the country” routine in a couple weeks. Sure, Harper can try, but with this leader, it doesn’t quite have the same weight. This assumes no election straight away, and given today’s economic data, I would say the Cons are insane to force a vote now. If someone can point to one historical example, where a sitting government improved its position, while in the midst of horrible economic indicators, let me know.

  • MrvnMouse

    Compas also seems to show that the Libs are pulling way ahead in Quebec.

    I’m waiting for the details to be released by Nanos so I can add it to pollingreport.

  • Mike

    Steve, whenever the next election is the coalition WILL be on the table. So any poll that doesn’t take that into consideration isn’t even a very good poll.

    Wells has a pretty good take on this:

    I tend to agree with what he quoted from Accidental Deliberations in the second link: if Harper is going to run against the coalition NO MATTER WHEN THE ELECTION IS (and let’s be real who is going to believe Iggy now if he says “I will not enter into a coalition with the NDP”) why not give Canadians a real idea of what the coalition is by governing instead of only leaving Canadians with the fiction Harper presents? Otherwise Harper will run saying “give me a majority or you’ll get the 3 headed monster that will destroy the economy”.

    Why would we allow then when we have good reason now to believe with this poll that the coalition under Iggy would be more popular than the previous incarnation from December.

  • Scott

    If NANOS included the coalition question in this poll, the Liberals would be way back. There have been two polls, this one and the AR, that avoided the coalition, and asked straight horserace questions. It isn’t coincidence that these two polls gave the best results for the Liberals.

    On the Dion honeymoon, important to remember, there was polling that showed the Liberals slightly ahead of the Conservatives PRIOR to Dion winning the leadership. Just so we don’t overstate that bounce.

  • Anonymous

    I’m sure there’ll be a poll soon that will ask that question.

    17% for the Tories in Quebec. Ouch. TheStrategist ™ is not going to like that one bit.

    Get ready for a BIG budget with goodies for everybody. I wouldn’t be surprised if Harper expanded his Cabinet to include everyone in his caucus.

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