Trudeau's Twilight or Poilievre's Dawn? The Real Polling Story Behind the Liberal Slide
What my polling data is telling me about the political landscape as September begins.
Recent polling data on the Canadian political landscape seems to tell a story of shifting opinions and intended behaviour. The Liberals trail by double digits and many have been asking me, what’s causing this?
Is this surge more about a nation's newfound love for Pierre Poilievre and the Conservative Party, or is more more about a growing dissatisfaction with Justin Trudeau and the Liberal government?
The findings from the latest Abacus Data polling provide valuable insights.
First, let's consider the national mood. Only 28% of Canadians currently believe the country is on the right track. Rewind to the weekend before the 2021 federal election, and the figure was 39%. The nation's sentiments have not been this pessimistic since 2015.
Then, there's the question of the federal government's performance. A slight majority (52%) of Canadians disapprove of their actions while just over three in 10 approve, a significant shift from the near-equal approval-disapproval ratio before the last federal election.
Prime Minister Trudeau also has seen a gradual erosion of his popularity. A once even split between his supporters and naysayers (at the time of the 2021 election) has now widened, with his net favourable rating trailing falling to -24.
And then there are the issues people are focused on today: cost of living, healthcare, and housing affordability. On these three issues - the most salient at the moment - the Liberals lag behind both the Conservatives and the NDP on who people think will handle them best.
I think voters ultimately vote for the party they think will do the best job on the issue they care most about. Right now, the Liberals are nowhere on that front. In fact, given how bad they are doing, holding onto 26% of support is actually quite impressive.
To reiterate just how bad things are for the Liberals, most Canadians either believe they lack a solid plan or feel their strategies are misguided on the issues they care most about (some new data about whether Canadians think the Liberal government has a good plan, bad plan, or no plan to deal with some key issues will be coming soon to paid subscribers).
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