Federal Liberals, Conservatives almost tied

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Federal Liberals, Conservatives almost tied

Conservative minority government seen if election held today

TORONTO April 16th, 2015 - In a random sampling of public opinion taken by the Forum Poll™ among 1365 Canadian voters, about one third will support the Conservatives (33%) or the Liberals in the next federal election (35%). Just fewer than one quarter will vote NDP (22%). These results are very similar to those noted last month (March 31, 31%, 34%, 23%, respectively). One twentieth will vote Green (6%) and few will vote for the Bloc Quebecois (3%) or other parties (1%). In Ontario, where the next election will be won, the two leading parties are tied (Liberals - 39%, Conservatives - 37%), while the NDP lags (19%). In the second most populous province, Quebec, the Liberals lead (33%), the NDP is in second place (28%) and the Conservatives are not competitive (22%). The Bloc claims just one tenth of voters in that province (11%).

Conservative minority seen

If these results are projected up to seats in a 338 seat House, the Conservatives would take a very weak minority of 142 seats (28 fewer than needed for a majority), while the Liberals would take an almost equal 137. The NDP would capture 58 seats, the Green Party would retain leader Elizabeth May’s seat and no other party would be seated.

Leader approvals stable

Prime Minister Harper has the approval of one third of Canadians (33%) and his net favourable rating (approve minus disapprove) is a very negative -25. This, however, is very similar to last moth (33%, -26). Tom Mulcair still basks in the approval of one half of voters (48%) and his net is a very positive +20 (stable from 47% and +17). Justin Trudeau has the approval of 4-in-10 voters (40%) and his net score is a neutral -2 (stable from 40% and -4).

Either leading party seen as likely winner

When asked which party they expect to win the election (often a valuable predictive measure), exactly equal proportions opt for the Liberals (37%) or the Conservatives (36%). The NDP are not favoured (10%). These findings have not changed in several months, which would seem too indicate e very close election. Just one twentieth of Conservative voters expect the Liberals to win (6%) while one sixth of Liberals think the Conservatives will win (16%). More importantly, however, is the fact that the largest single group of New Democrat supporters think the Liberals will win (36%), rather than their own party (32%). Close to one half of those who voted NDP in 2011 think the Liberals will win the next election (45%) and this is an indication of where their vote may lie this time.

"The demise of the Liberal Party is predicted frequently these days, but the corpse seems not to have heard the news. The Party is competitive in Ontario and Quebec, where it counts, and it is just the vagary of the 30 new seats in the house which gives the Conservatives their minority, and a slim one, at this point," said Forum Research President, Dr. Lorne Bozinoff.

Lorne Bozinoff, Ph.D. is the president and founder of Forum Research. He can be reached at lbozinoff@forumresearch.com or at (416) 960-9603.