Not any more

Liberals pull even with Tories: EKOS poll

In Canada on September 2, 2010 at 07:49

Michael Ignatieff’s Liberals have pulled into an end-of-summer dead heat with Stephen Harper’s Conservatives, according to a new EKOS poll.

According to the poll results, released exclusively to CBC News, 29.4 per cent of respondents would vote for the Tories if an election were held today, compared with 29.1 per cent for the Liberals. The difference is well within the poll’s margin of error.

The Conservatives held a comfortable 11-point lead over the Liberals at the beginning of the summer, but have faced mounting criticism for their moves to scrap the mandatory long-form census and the federal long-gun registry.

In the latest poll, the NDP’s support dropped to 15.7 per cent, down from 17.4 per cent two weeks ago, while support for the Green Party rose almost three percentage points to 13 per cent, according to EKOS.

Meanwhile, support for the Bloc Québécois remained stable at 10.9 per cent, the poll suggested.

Ignatieff has claimed his party has seized momentum from the Conservatives following a summer-long bus tour across Canada that featured the Liberal leader speaking unscripted and taking questions from audience members.

Poll respondents were also asked whether they felt that the privacy intrusion of the census justified a voluntary census, or whether the lack of representativeness would cause vital information to be lost.

Some 56 per cent of those polled said the latter statement came close to their view, compared to 26 per cent who felt the mandatory long form was a violation of privacy, EKOS said.

Opposition to the census decision is strongest among Liberals and NDP supporters as well as the university-educated. This could indicate why support for the Conservatives has declined among the university-educated and support for the Liberals has increased.

There has also been a sharp decline in confidence in the direction of the country over the summer. While a plurality of Canadians (48 per cent) believe that the country is moving in the right direction, four in 10 respondents said they feel that it is moving in the wrong direction. Opinions regarding the direction of the country are directly related to party support.

The random survey of 3,559 Canadians aged 18 and over was conducted Aug. 18-Aug. 31 and carries a margin of error of plus or minus 1.6 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.



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