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Ethics Commissioner report had little effect on voter preference: poll

Last Updated Aug 21, 2019 at 6:02 am EST

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau holds talks with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy at the Hotel Fairmont Royal York During the Ukraine Reform Conference in Toronto, on Tuesday, July 2, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Lahodynskyj

While a damning report from Canada’s ethics commissioner found Prime Minister Justin Trudeau guilty of violating Canada’s Conflict of Interest Act, it looks like the affair has had little impact on how Canadians say they will vote in the upcoming federal election.

According to a new survey conducted by DART & Maru/Blue Voice Canada over the weekend after the report was released, Mario Dion’s findings following the SNC-Lavalin scandal did not prompt any sudden or drastic changes in voter opinion.

The online survey polled 1,512 randomly selected Canadians who are members of Maru/Blue’s online panel and compares numbers to the last survey conducted in June.

Overall party support

The Liberals still have 32 per cent voter support and support for the Conservatives went up slightly from 37 to 39 per cent compared the the last poll.

Bloc Québécois went up two points to 22 per cent, the NDP lost two points, down to 15 per cent and the Green Party and the People’s Party of Canada trailed at seven and one per cent respectively.

The increased support for the Tories comes from areas in which they already have a stronghold: Alberta shot up 11 points to 77 per cent and Saskatchewan/Manitoba that increased eight points to 58 per cent.

Time for a change vs re-elect Liberals

Opinions regarding an overall need for change in government also saw only minimal shifts.

Over half of those polled agreed that a new party needs to take over the federal reigns — going up from 52 to 56 per cent.

Twenty six per cent of Canadians believe the Liberals deserve another term — a slight increase from 24 per cent compared to the last survey.

Undecided voters: the real fallout

The number of people who don’t know or are not sure whether the Liberals deserve their vote or another party should take over dropped from 24 per cent down to 18 per cent.

In addition, the overall number of undecided voters in Canada went down from 22 per cent in the previous survey to only one in 10 Canadians (10 per cent).

The poll suggests these shrinking numbers of unsure voters likely reflects the real fallout of the ethics report findings and could possibly be a negative development for the Liberals.

Methodology: The poll is accurate to withing plus or minus 2.9 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, had all Canadian adults been polled.