The Liberal Party of Canada suffered a historic demotion in last year's federal election. A new poll finds more than half of Canadians feel the Grits are a "Party of the Past," while the same poll finds agreement among a Liberal/New Democrat merger.
Is this the end of the Liberal Party? The opinions of a number of Canadians are that the Grits are a dying party and they should merge with the New Democratic Party in order to take on Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his Conservatives.
A survey from Ipsos Reid conducted for Postmedia News and Global Television suggests that 56 percent of Canadians consider the Liberal Party to be the "Party of the Past." A minority of 44 percent of Canadians disagree with this notion that the Grits are outdated. Meanwhile, when it comes to Liberal supporters, only 20 percent agree with this sentiment, while 79 percent of Grit voters say it's a party of the future.
Even when the Liberal Party finds a permanent leader – some are speculating Bob Rae and possibly Justin Trudeau will run for permanent leadership – the Canadian electorate is split if it will make a difference in the party`s future.
More than half agree with statement, "Regardless of who the Liberals choose as their next leader [they’ve] pretty much written off the Liberals." Nearly half (48 percent) disagree and believe the party will once again be a competitive party. Both New Democratic (61 percent) and Conservative (70 percent) voters have, indeed, given up on the Liberals.
Can Trudeau save the Grits? The two-term Member of Parliament for Papineau told CTV News Tuesday that he has no plans on running for the Liberal leadership, despite the avid calls among Grits.
"If you're waiting to find out whether I've reconsidered right now, the answer is no. My answer still holds at no. I've said I'm not going to run," stated Trudeau.
When asked about the recent poll that shows Trudeau is favoured much more than the interim Liberal leader Bob Rae, Trudeau dismissed the impressions, but did say he was flattered by the popularity.
"But politics isn't just a popularity contest or Stephen Harper wouldn't be our prime minister right now. It's about being more than that."
For more than a year, there have been calls for a merger between the Liberals and NDP. 41 percent of Canadians say they would support a Liberal-NDP merger and 59 percent disagree with a merger. The proposal garners more support amongst the party voters; 64 percent of Liberals and 57 percent of NDP voters support the merger, but more than one-third of Bloc Quebecois voters and 20 percent of Tory voters disapprove of the merger.
The online study was conducted between Jun. 5 and Jun. 7 with 1,010 adult Canadians. It contains a margin of error of +/- 3.1 percentage points.