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article imagePoll puts Canadian Liberals under 'political pincer attack'

By Salim Jiwa     Nov 21, 2009 in Politics
Ipsos Reid calls it a political pincer attack after its national poll puts the Nerw Democratic Party up to 19 per cent of public support, with the Liberals falling to 24 per cent. The Conservatives have 37 per cent.
Toronto – After taking repeated hits from the right flank by the Harper Conservatives, it now appears that the NDP are moving in to attack Michael Ignatieff’s Liberals on the left flank, according to a new Ipsos Reid poll conducted on behalf of Canwest News Service and Global Television.
In a political pincer attack, the NDP have charged ahead to 19 per cent of national support while the Liberals have retreated to 24 per cent support, a new low for the Grits under party leader Michael Ignatieff.
A relatively poor showing in a recently held by-elections underscores the problems that opposition leader Michael Ignatieff is having resonating with the public, Ipsos Reid said in an emailed report.
Recent attacks on the government for partisan appointments and stimulus hand-outs, as well as allegations that Canadian Forces knowingly handed over Afghani detainees to certain torture, have failed to propel the faltering Liberals.
If an election were held tomorrow, 37 per cent of decided voters would support Prime Minister Stephen Harper and the Conservative Party, down 3 points from last month. Still struggling to convince voters that his party is the government in waiting, only 24 per cent of Canadians would vote for Michael Ignatieff’s Liberal Party (down 1 point).
The New Democratic Party, under Jack Layton, has surged 6 points over the last month and would now receive the support of 19 per cent of decided voters nationally, bringing them to within only 5 points of the Liberal Party.
The Green Party, led by Elizabeth May, would receive 10 per cent support (down 1 point), while Gilles Duceppe’s Bloc would receive 9 per cent of the vote nationally (down 2 points).
Seven per cent of voters are undecided.
The change in the national figures are being driven by shifting preferences in the seat-rich province of Ontario:
• The Tories would receive 39 per cent of the vote in Ontario (down two points), while the Liberals would garner 29 per cent support (down 3) if an election were held tomorrow. The NDP have surged 8 points to 21 per cent support, while the Greens have dropped to 8 per cent support (down six).
Quebec is also a key battleground due to the large number of seats in that province, but the Bloc still maintains a dominant lead:
• The Bloc would receive 38 per cent support in Quebec if a vote were to be held tomorrow (down four points), while the Grits (24 per cent, up two) and the Tories (20 per cent, up two) are well back. The NDP (12 percent, unchanged) and Green Party (7 per cent, unchanged) lag.
These are the findings of an Ipsos Reid poll conducted on behalf of Canwest News Service and Global Television from November 17 to 19, 2009. For the survey, a representative randomly selected sample
of 1,003 adult Canadians was interviewed by telephone. With a sample of this size, the results are considered accurate to within ± 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, of what they would have been had the entire adult population of Canada been polled. The margin of error will be larger within regions and for other sub-groupings of the survey population. These data were weighted to ensure that the sample’s regional and age/sex composition reflects that of the actual Canadian population according to Census data.
More about Ndp gaining grits, New opinion poll, Tories lose ground, Opinion poll, Ipsos reid
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