Liberal lead tightens in New Brunswick

| Filed under: National

Cardy's favourables up sharply, Gallant's down

TORONTO September 11th, 2014 - In a random sampling of public opinion taken by the Forum Poll™ among 732 New Brunswick voters 11 days before the September 22 provincial election, just more than 4-in-10 will vote Liberal (42%), compared to about a third who will vote Progressive Conservative (32%), for a 10 point lead in favour of the Liberals. This stands in contrast to our last poll two weeks ago, when the spread was 15 points for the Liberals (August 26, Liberals - 46%, Progressive Conservatives - 31%). The New Democrats have just more than a tenth of the vote (13%), stable from two weeks ago (15%). Less than a tenth will vote Green (6%) or for another party (7%). Of note, one quarter of past Progressive Conservative voters will vote Liberals this time (25%), as will more than 4-in-10 New Democrats (42%). The Liberal vote is the "stickiest" in that more past Liberals will vote their party (78%) than will either Progressive Conservatives (55%) or New Democrats (34%).

Liberals to take two thirds of Assembly seats

In the new 49 seat Legislative Assembly, the Liberals are projected to take 34 seats, down from 44 two weeks ago, while the Progressive Conservatives are projected to capture 15 Assembly seats, up from 5 previously.

Two thirds approve of downtown revitalization capital projects

Fewer than 3-in-10 approve of Brian Gallant now (29%), down from more than a third two weeks ago (34%), and his net favourable score (approve minus disapprove) has declined from 0 to -16. Dominic Cardy, on the other hand, has seen his approval improve from a third (34%) to close to 4-in-10 now (38%), and his net has improved from +4 to +14. Premier Alward has the approval of far fewer (26%, stable from 27%) and his net favourable is a dismal -37, down from -33. As such, both Alward and Gallant poll slightly behind their parties, while Cardy polls far ahead of his personally.

Gallant and Alward matched on all attributes except ethics; Cardy lags

When the three party leaders are tested for which would be best at a selection of tasks, Brian Gallant and David Alward are matched on handling the provincial budget (Alward - 26%, Gallant - 27, Cardy 18%), creating jobs and growth (28%, 31%, 12% respectively), handling relations with Ottawa (30%, 30%, 13% respectively), cutting government waste (22%, 23%, 22% respectively). On ethics in government, Gallant leads (21%, 28%, 17%) as he does slightly on having the best vision for New Brunswick (26%, 30%, 15%).

It appears some of the shine has come off Brian Gallant's bandwagon, which is inevitably the case when you have such a strong lead going into the election. It's interesting to note that he and the Premier are matched on most leadership attributes except ethics and vision, so we must assume these are the factors motivating his lead in the polls" 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.