The Leger poll conducted April 27-29 and reported by the CBC News yesterday, shows the Conservatives leading with 36 per cent of support, while the Liberals languish in a poor second with only 25 per cent. At 20 percent, the New Democrats are closer to the Grits than the Grits are to the Tories.
Perhaps even more discouraging for the LPC is the continued lack of confidence Canadians have for their leader, Michael Ignatieff. Ignatieff trails Prime Minister Stephen Harper by 15 percentage points on the question of which leader would make the best prime minister—Jack Layton was chosen by 23 per cent of respondents and the Green party’s Elizabeth May had a pathetic 4-per cent support.
The poll, however, sounded a cautionary note: while PM Harper and his Conservatives continue to lead all other leaders and their parties, 55 per cent of respondents said they are dissatisfied with the Conservative government, and a disturbing 25 per cent said they were “very dissatisfied.” And, while 37 per cent of respondents said Canada was heading in the right direction, 42 per cent said we are heading in the wrong direction.
Maintaining support—though not at the majority level—among a broad cross section of Canadians is not easy, given we have four opposition party leaders, including Elizabeth May, sniping and insulting the prime minister at every opportunity and disparaging every legislative initiative he attempts. The fact that Stephen Harper has managed to do so and to remain in office for over four years is a testament to the man’s political agility and skill.
What a pleasant contrast PM Harper’s cool, confident leadership makes to Michael Ignatieff’s indecision and policy flip-flopping.