Liberal lead tightens

| Filed under: National

Liberal minority now seen

TORONTO AUGUST 20th, 2014 – In a random sampling of public opinion taken by the Forum Poll™ among 1798 Canadian voters, just more than 4-in-10 will vote Liberal in the next election (41%), giving the party a nine point lead over the Conservatives (32%). This is in comparison to last month at this time when the spread was sixteen points (July 19, 2014 - Liberals - 44%, Conservatives - 28%). In the meantime, the NDP has stayed stable at under one fifth of the vote (July - 18%, today - 17%). One twentieth will vote Bloc Quebecois or Green Party (5% each) and very few will vote for another party (1%). Support for the Liberals is common across age, gender and income demographics, with the exception of the youngest (32%).

The Liberal vote is strong in Atlantic Canada (55%) and Ontario (46%), among the best educated (post grad - 50%) and non-Christians (48%).

The Conservative vote is common to the oldest (39%), males (36%), mid income groups ($60K to $80K - 36%), in the prairies (36%) and especially Alberta (58%), Protestant (49%) and Evangelical Christians (63%), and Anglophones (36%).

The New Democrat vote is common to younger voters (under 45 - 20%), females (20%), the least wealthy (20%), in Quebec (26%) and BC (24%), college graduates (20%), Catholics (22%), the non-religious (22%), mothers of children (24%) and Francophones (28%)

Of note, one third of past NDP voters (33%) and one fifth of past Conservative voters (20%) will support the Liberals this time. In contrast, the vast majority of past Liberal voters will vote Liberal again this time (85%), compared to three quarters of past Conservative voters (72%) and just more than half of past New Democrats (55%).

Liberal minority seen

If these poll results are projected up to seats in a 308 seat House of Commons, the Liberals would capture 142, thirteen short of a majority. The Conservatives would take 110 seats, the NDP 51, the Bloc 4 and Elizabeth May would retain the Green Party's only elected seat.

Mulcair's favourables down, Trudeau's, Harper's edge up

Justin Trudeau has the approval of one half of Canadian voters (48%), up slightly from last month (46%), and his net favourable score (approve minus disapprove) is a healthy +13, up from +9. Prime Minister Harper's approval is up slightly as well (from 33% to 35%), and his net has improved from -25 to -19. Thomas Mulcair, on the other hand, has seen his approval decline from last month (40% to 37%) and his net score is +7.

Trudeau maintains slight edge for best PM

At just more than 3-in-10, Justin Trudeau has a very slim lead (as he had last month) in the best PM stakes (31%), while the Prime Minister has just less than this score (29%), as he did last month (27%). One seventh give Tom Mulcair the nod (15%), one tenth select Elizabeth May (8%) and one fifth have no opinion (18%).

"We are uncertain what has caused this dip in Liberal fortunes, but it may be connected to world events, where the Prime Minister has been claiming the stage with some very tough performances, which can be difficult for a candidate who is not in government to challenge. It should be noted, however, that both Harper and Trudeau poll at about the same favourability as their parties, whereas Tom Mulcair exceeds his party's score by a factor of two. In this case, he's proven unable to drag the party up to his own level of popularity, which is what Jack Layton essentially did to ignite the Orange Crush," said Forum Research President, Dr. Lorne Bozinoff.

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