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Harper failing to sway country

observor 69

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http://www.rbcinvest.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/ArticleNews/PEstory/LAC/20070719/POLL18/Front/frontpage/frontpage/3/3/4/


Harper failing to win country over

Poll puts Liberals, Tories in dead heat


By BRIAN LAGHI 
OTTAWA BUREAU CHIEF

Thursday, July 19, 2007 – Page A1



Discomfort with Stephen Harper's Conservatives is deepening among women, francophones and wealthier Canadians, according to a new poll that puts the government in a dead heat with the Liberals in popular support.

The survey, conducted for The Globe and Mail/CTV News, finds that both parties enjoy the backing of 31 per cent of the electorate, a drop of three points for the Tories from last month, but not a change for the Liberals. The NDP is supported by 17 per cent and the Greens by 10 per cent.

Compared with one year ago, when they were at 37-per-cent support, the Tories find themselves less popular among women, French-speaking Canadians and voters who earn more than $100,000 a year.

"The gender gap, in particular, is a potential problem for them," said Peter Donolo of the Strategic Counsel, which conducted the survey. "And it's really pronounced in support for sending troops to Afghanistan."

The poll found 46 per cent of men support sending troops to Afghanistan, but only 27 per cent of women.

Mr. Donolo said the drop in support among the more affluent may be due to the decision to tax income trusts and a spate of foreign takeovers of Canadian companies, while the decline among women and francophones is almost certainly due to the numbers of Canadian soldiers who have been killed in Afghanistan.

The poll shows that 26 per cent of women would vote for the Conservatives if an election were held today, compared with 32 per cent in June of 2006, while 17 per cent of French speakers would vote Conservative compared with 25 per cent from one year ago.

When it comes to Canadians earning $100,000 or more, the drop is precipitous, with 31 per cent saying they would vote Conservative, compared with 49 per cent one year ago.

Terrorism and Afghanistan were ranked as the third most important issues to Canadians, behind the environment and health care.

Women may be uncomfortable with Mr. Harper's combative style, said Mr. Donolo. He said the Prime Minister needs to get back to stressing his middle-class values and family orientation.

"Those are a lot more effective with women voters than a kind of very aggressive, confrontational highly partisan style."

The drop in Tory support from last month follows a difficult parliamentary sitting that saw the government attacked for its handling of the Afghan detainees issue and for changes to the equalization system, particularly as it impacts parts of Atlantic Canada.

With the sitting over, some party members had expected the Conservatives' support would rebound, but cross-Canada touring by the Prime Minister has not done the trick.

In vote-rich Ontario, the Liberals continue to hold a lead, with 41 per cent, versus 34 per cent for the Tories, a virtual replication of the month before. The NDP is up two points to 13.

In the West, the Tories have dropped four percentage points to 40 per cent, although they continue to lead the Liberals 40-25, with the NDP third at 24.

In Quebec, the Tories continue to lag behind both the Bloc Québécois and the Liberals. The Bloc leads the pack with 40 per cent, while the Liberals are second with 25 per cent. The Conservatives are third with 16 per cent and the NDP fourth with 10 per cent, a jump of four points.

The Tory figure is a drop of nine percentage points from the 2006 election.

Mr. Donolo said the numbers appear to demonstrate the Liberals under Stéphane Dion are installing themselves as the second choice of Quebec voters.

Among francophones, the Liberals lead the Tories by 21 per cent to 17 per cent.

One year ago, the Conservatives led the Liberals by 11 points.

The Tories also appear to have not yet capitalized on the popularity of Mario Dumont, whose Action Démocratique du Québec elected 41 MNAs in the March 26 Quebec provincial election and now sits as the Official Opposition.

The poll of 1,000 Canadians was conducted from July 12-15 and is considered accurate to within 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

How would Canadians vote today?

The July poll puts Liberals and Conservatives in a popularity tie.

  Liberal Conservative NDP Bloc Green
Canada  31% 31% 17% 10% 10%
Age 18-34 36% 21% 20% 12% 11%
35-49 29% 33% 18% 10% 11%
50+ 30% 38% 15% 8% 9%
Education High school or less 28% 32% 18% 12% 10%
Some postsecondary 31% 33% 23% 6% 8%
Graduate of college/university 33% 31% 16% 10% 11%
Income Less than $50,000 27% 27% 22% 12% 12%
$50,000 -$100,000 31% 31% 17% 10% 11%
More than $100,000 42% 31% 10% 6% 10%
Gender Male 27% 37% 17% 10% 10%
Female 36% 26% 18% 10% 10%

SOURCE: STRATEGIC COUNSEL

 

Edward Campbell

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I got two things from that article and poll:

1. The lie that Pearsonian, baby-blue beret style peacekeeping is ”traditional” for Canada is deeply rooted.  Shame on a whole generation of ill educated teachers and educrats, lazy journalists and cheap ward heeling politicians who fed those lazy journalists with press releases which ‘justified’ the emasculation of Canada’s military; and

2. There is a ‘base’ upon which the government can and should build the case to stay in Afghanistan: progress for women and children.
 

GAP

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We have all decried how the MSM doesn't get it, but I truely believe there is becoming an ongoing program by the MSM to slam Harper by killing the Afghanistan mission which he supported (don't know if he does now).
 

cameron

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+1 E.R. Campbell, especially on point number two.  Maybe the Conservatives need to work harder to drive home the point to female voters of how many priveleges, rights and freedoms they enjoy in comparison to their counterparts in Afghanistan.  No female in Canada gets bombed or threatened just for attending or trying to attend school or university.
 

mover1

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Unfortunately the war in Afghanistan is already lost.
The news papers have called it a lost cause the TV  harps that it is hopeless general media the polls etc say its lost.

What actually has been lost is the media war. Bad sensational news sells papers and commercial slots on the air. Good news seldom has a cash reward. Therefore only one side of the story gets published. What needs to happen to sway public opinion is a series of Public Service Campaigns and adds telling Canadians what we are doing and what is being accomplished over there.

They need to be well balanced and only deal with the facts. Otherwise every frigging opinion poll will show the same results.
 
N

niceasdrhuxtable

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Baden  Guy said:
The survey, conducted for The Globe and Mail/CTV News, finds that both parties enjoy the backing of 31 per cent of the electorate, a drop of three points for the Tories from last month, but not a change for the Liberals. The NDP is supported by 17 per cent and the Greens by 10 per cent.

I think the interesting bit of data to extrapolate from this is that 69% of Canadians support left/left-leaning parties in the Federal government. This is why I'm not sure the Conservatives will ever get a majority in Canada again unless they can successfully reposition themselves as more of a centrist party the way the Liberals have for so many years.

I remember one of my polysci professors talking about how the Liberal party was/is the "natural governing party" for Canada and at the time thinking it was a bunch of a rubbish. But as time goes on I'm start to become increasingly convinced that this is actually true.
 

Old Sweat

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That is an interesting set of results by the Strategic Counsel, as a poll by SES Research done last week showed the Conservatives at 37 % and the Liberals considerably lower. (SES was  the firm that called the results of the last election to withing a percentage point. As I suspected CTV and the Globe ignored it.)

However, that the government has got some work to do is not beyond question.
 

Teddy Ruxpin

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The problem is that "Harper" (and by extension the rest of the government) has done a very poor job of communicating anything regarding our role in Afghanistan.  Instead, they appear to have left educating the Canadian public firmly in the hands of those of us in uniform.  The MND is particularly abysmal at engaging the public.

This isn't - and should never be - our job.  The CDS (or anyone in uniform, for that matter) should not have to defend the mission to a skeptical Canadian public; this is the role of the political leadership.  We can, and should, explain what we're doing on the ground, what our plans are and what impact we're making - all firmly in our lanes.  "Why" we're there, "what" our role should be, and "how long" we'll stay are for the government to answer.

As has been pointed out in other posts, where are the other government departments?  Where are the other ministers?  Why is the government not countering the massive amount of misinformation (some deliberate) out there?  Until everyone steps up, the polling numbers will get worse with each casualty in theatre.
 

Cardstonkid

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CTV/Globe and Mail polls ALWAYS show the Conservatives to be behind. I hope Dion and Layton get hot and bothered and force an election in the Fall, they will get their arses handed to them. The Afghan mission can be justified and would be accepted if the average Canadian knew enough about it.

The MSM has not covered the good that is being done there, but an election will clarify things and to be honest if the average Canadian is so stupid they will vote for the Lieberals or the Dippers after hearing the truth then they do not deserve the sacrifice of so many good young men and women. If we as a country are so weak with ignorance and apathy that we will not stand up for anything then we deserve what is coming. If the Conservatives can't find the voice to tell it how it is then there is no hope for Canada.
 

Sassy

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Teddy Ruxpin said:
The problem is that "Harper" (and by extension the rest of the government) has done a very poor job of communicating anything regarding our role in Afghanistan.  Instead, they appear to have left educating the Canadian public firmly in the hands of those of us in uniform.  The MND is particularly abysmal at engaging the public.

This isn't - and should never be - our job.  The CDS (or anyone in uniform, for that matter) should not have to defend the mission to a skeptical Canadian public; this is the role of the political leadership.  We can, and should, explain what we're doing on the ground, what our plans are and what impact we're making - all firmly in our lanes.  "Why" we're there, "what" our role should be, and "how long" we'll stay are for the government to answer.

As has been pointed out in other posts, where are the other government departments?  Where are the other ministers?  Why is the government not countering the massive amount of misinformation (some deliberate) out there?  Until everyone steps up, the polling numbers will get worse with each casualty in theatre.

That in a nut shell is the problem, the Canadian Public want a debate and they have been asking for one. Harper is a weak arrogant leader who turns his nose up at the people.  If the mission were explained (including a slideshow) the people of Canada could have a reference point to judge for themselves. Harper has allowed the media to spin Afghanistan into a failure and he's done nothing to negate this half truth or lie.  He needs to show leadership, not by duck taping his MP's mouths shut but by allowing them to talk to the "Unwashed masses that voted for the MPs". Harper's solution to date is throw buckets of cash at Quebec because only Quebec's votes count.

Note: Females in Canada are well aware of what's going on in Afghanistan, and improving the lives of females, in my opinion, is NOT happening.  Little girls are being used as currency to pay off drug debts or sold into arranged marrages to grown adult men so their families can afford to eat. Until someone address the lack of aide to the poorest of the poor in Afghanistan nothing will change for females.  Educating little girls to be sold as currency isn't doing a Culture that backwards any favours. Using women as an example will do more harm than good, I've read to many horror stories out of Afghanistan visa vie Emblosions (women setting themselves on fire to end their suffering). Frankly it will take twenty or more years for the males to evolve to allow women even a modicom of equality. As much as I wish improving the lives of females were part of the mission mandate it isn't or so I assume due to lack of info from our esteem lack of leadership Harper.
 

cameron

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Well said Sassy, the Canadian Government needs to engage the public more in discussion on Afghanistan.  As for Afghan men it definitely will take a lot ot time, education and effort to evolve them out of a mentality that relegates women to a status little higher than chattel.
 

Greymatters

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mover1 said:
Unfortunately the war in Afghanistan is already lost.
The news papers have called it a lost cause the TV  harps that it is hopeless general media the polls etc say its lost.

What actually has been lost is the media war. Bad sensational news sells papers and commercial slots on the air. Good news seldom has a cash reward. Therefore only one side of the story gets published. What needs to happen to sway public opinion is a series of Public Service Campaigns and adds telling Canadians what we are doing and what is being accomplished over there.

They need to be well balanced and only deal with the facts. Otherwise every frigging opinion poll will show the same results. 

Have to agree with that...
 
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