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RSR ROBBINS Research - Canada Politics December 2, 2008
  Dec 02, 2008

This is a targeted sample of 1,420 Canadians who voted in the most recent Canadian federal election, conducted between November 29-December 3, 2008. Numbers are related to population in each of Canada’s ten provinces only. This ROBBINS poll features a margin of error of 1.95% 19 times out of 20 @95% competency. This ROBBINS poll was sponsored by Glen P. Robbins and Associates, telephoned in both Canada and the United States.
An honorarium was provided by Jim Van Rassel (604) 328-5398.

Question #1
Generally speaking, do you support the concept of a Liberal-NDP coalition to replace Stephen Harper’s Conservative government?
Yes    52.0 %
No    39.5 %
Question #2
Do you support the Liberal-NDP coalition- including support from the Bloc Quebecois- to replace Stephen Harper’s Conservative government?
Yes    50.0 %
No    40.5 %
Question #3
Do you support a Liberal-NDP coalition government led by Prime Minister Stephane Dion?
Yes    47.5 %
No    42.0 %
Question #4
From the following choices offered –which- is most responsible for Canada’s Constitutional predicament?
Prime Minister Stephen Harper    53.5 %
Opposition Party leaders    42.0 %
Question #5
In your opinion what should Governor General Michaelle Jean do with Canada’s current political Constitutional dilemma?
Allow the Liberal-NDP coalition with Bloc support to form government    32.5 %
Allow Stephen Harper’s Conservative government to delay Parliament until early in the New Year    23.0 %
Call an election at a cost of $300 million (dollars) to clear the political air in Canada    36.0 %
Commentary
Observations:
In question #1 “YES” (BC-45%); (Prairie Provinces-37%); (Ontario-48%); (Quebec-71%); (Atlantic Provinces-58%), or (57%) of ‘decided’ Canadian voters support the NDP-Liberal coalition while (43%) of ‘decided’ Canadians support Stephen Harper’s Conservative government.
In question #1 Stephen Harper’s Conservative government is supported by (47.3%) of decided voters in the Province of Ontario and (47.7%) of decided voters in British Columbia. His government has its lowest support -against being replaced-in Quebec among decided voters at (21.7%).
In question #2 where the Bloc is included in the coalition-- (55%) of decided Canadian voters supports the Coalition with the Bloc Quebecois, while (45%) support Stephen Harper’s Conservative government.
With Stephane Dion referred to as the Prime Minister, and as the leader of the Coalition, (53%) of decided Canadians voters are in support while (47%) support PM Stephen Harper and his Conservative Party.
In English Canada, Stephen Harper and his Conservative Party is approximately split 50/50 with the NDP-Liberal Coalition with support from the Bloc Quebecois. With Stephane Dion referred to as Prime Minister and leader of the Coalition, Stephen Harper’s Conservatives have a slight edge in popularity over the Coalition.
(56%) of decided Canadian voters are of the opinion that Prime Minister Stephen Harper is most responsible for Canada’s “current Constitutional predicament”.
Canada’s Governor General Michaelle Jean has a difficult situation to contend with. Many political pundits are favouring proroguing (delaying) government as Michaelle Jean’s choice, should Prime Minister Stephen Harper request it. However from the choices offered in this ROBBINS poll this is clearly not the choice of Canadians.
A significant minority of decided Canadian voters (35.7%) want the Governor General to permit a Coalition of Opposition parties to take charge of government, while only (25.3%) want Michaelle Jean to permit a request for a delay.
The largest number of Canadian voters (39.6%) wants an election called, notwithstanding the cost-- “to clear the air”.
Commentary:
Stephen Harper is in an awkward position. Confidence in his leadership has dropped, but not plummeted, buttressed by more entrenched support for both he and his Conservative Party, particularly in western Canada and Ontario. The Prime Minister and his Conservative party appear more like the Canadian Alliance of old but with much greater support in Canada’s largest province-- Ontario. One would be hard pressed to make the case that this government has done more to unite the country.
The Conservatives went to great length to induce Quebec into the government fold during their first minority government, but failed miserably to gain more seats in the most recent general federal election. Now with more seats and more solid support in Ontario, it is apparently difficult for Conservative party supporters to decide if they want Governor General Jean to prorogue (delay) government or to call an election.
Coalition supporters realize their best opportunity to form government is with an immediate decision from Governor General Jean in their favour, but their strength is lessened somewhat by the high numbers of Canadians-- including Coalition supporters-- who are of the opinion that Coalition ambitions ought to be realized through a democratic election and not through the mechanisms available to them through parliamentary democracy and The Canadian Constitution.
Quite clearly, handing the government over to the Coalition would make a large number of Canadians very angry-- although such an action is certainly within the prerogative of Canada’s Governor General. Many Canadians would also be extremely dissatisfied with any further delays, also provided for in Canada’s Constitution—as they see Stephen Harper’s Conservative government as either incompetent, inept or out of touch—and delays not ameliorating these perceived problems of governance.
At ROBBINS it is our position based on these numbers that Governor General Jean ought to make the decision to call an election “to clear the air”. By declaring a Writ period of the maximum length possible this would permit both the Coalition and Conservatives with an opportunity to organize and put their case to the people.

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