Oh, come now, Mr. Graves — surely, there’s hope. The latest numbers can’t possibly that relentlessly, unyieldingly unchangi — oh. Right, then. Carry on:
Conservatives: 32.7 (-2.2)
Liberals: 31.0 (-0.9)
NDP: 16.5 (+2.7)
Bloc Quebecois: 9.7 (+1.1)
Green: 10.1 (-0.7
Undecided: 15.4 (-1.8)
So, let’s recap, shall we? The Conservatives drop more than any other party, but still manage to lead the pack, as the Liberals bleed out quietly in the corner. At this rate, they’ll be under 30 by fall — just in time for that election-triggering confidence vote that they made sure to add on as a rider to the blue-ribbon panel deal! Man, that was some crafty strategizing, wasn’t it? (Confidential to OLO: You’re absolutely positive that your leader didn’t come up with that brilliant idea after chatting with an oddly helpful gentleman with a distinctly Scottish accent who just happened to be hanging around outside Langevin, right? Just checking.)
Meanwhile, the NDP are zooming up, up and away, although as Graves notes, that may be partly due to the burst of pre-convention coverage on the possible name change. But does that jump mean that Canadians are embracing the notion of an N-less DP, or are they showing a little love for the classic moniker? I guess we’ll find out next week, huh?
Over on the leadership front, we have one of those polls that drive Dippers stark staring crazy: There’s Jack Layton, sitting pretty with a 34% approval rating, five points ahead of Michael Ignatieff, and just two points behind the prime minister, making it look like the NDP may finally — finally! — be poised to overtake those dastardly Liberals and become the One True Party of the Left. But for some reason, that sort of fond affection for a leader just never seems to make the jump from approval to party support. It’s just — weird, although it does tend to back up ITQ’s gut feeling that Canadians don’t tend to pick a party based solely on its leader, except under exceptional circumstances, and let’s face it, there’s no leader in the mix right now who can be described as exceptional in any way.
Michael Ignatieff, on the other hand, ought to be a wee bit concerned by the fact that his approval rating amongst Liberals is just 59% — that’s twenty points behind Stephen Harper’s standing with Conservatives.
Also of note: Quebeckers are either wacky or just messing with our heads. Sorry, but that’s the only explanation for the results of this week’s non-FVI-related question, which asked whether, due to the “inability of any party to secure a majority government,” Canada would be “better served” by a two-party system. Nationally, 56% say no — particularly Greens (66%) and Liberals (60) — but 44% say yes, including 48% of Conservative voters, 51% of Bloc voters, and 50% of Quebeckers. Seriously, you guys? You do realize, I hope, that it’s the very existence of the Bloc Quebecois, and, more specifically, your stubborn insistence on exercising your democratic right to vote for them despite all those helpful finger-pointing op-eds about how they’re destroying the electoral system and should lose all federal subsidies and possibly be rounded up and jailed just on principle, and — yeah, so, what ITQ wants to know is this: In this theoretical two-party system, which two parties, exactly, do y’all figure would be on the ballot? The BQ and “Other”? Because call me crazy, but I’m pretty sure that’s not how the rest of the country interpreted the question, although I suppose we could just have two different two party systems, one for Quebec, and one for the rest of the country, which seems oddly apropos.
Oh, and also: Um, Liberals? Or at least, the 60% of you that don’t like the idea of a two-party system? Would you mind putting down the crack pipe for just a sec and explaining exactly why you’d be opposed to a system that would likely result in your party actually managing to win the occasional election?
Other Ekos findings: We all still love Obama, forever and for always, although we aren’t big fans of his country’s concept of health care: 87% of Canadians think our system is better, with just 7% giving the edge to the US; the numbers are mostly consistent across the country, except for one slightly trend-bucking province, in which fully 12% — nearly double the national average — believe the American system is best. And no, it’s not Alberta.
Thoughts, musings, free verse? Bring it on, commenters!