Category : British Columbia

HomeArchive by Category "British Columbia"
BC-360

Liberals, Greens Gain as Writs Dropped

April 18, 2017 (Ottawa, ON) – A new Mainstreet/Postmedia poll finds the BC Liberals and BC Greens gaining ground as the writs dropped. The Mainstreet/Postmedia poll has a margin of error of +/- 2.41 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

“As the writs dropped the Liberals were able to make gains” said Quito Maggi, President of Mainstreet Research. “Most of the Liberal gains came in the Greater Vancouver area, where the NDP now hold just a 5 point lead – a difference that Liberal incumbents could make up. Today’s portrait of Greater Vancouver would mean the ground war would matter more than ever.”

“The Greens have gained over our last poll as well and are now leading by 4 percentage points on Vancouver Island. At the same time the Green vote has solidified, 53% of Green Voters now say they won’t change their mind – similar to the increase the Liberals and NDP are seeing as well.”

Among all voters: 30% Liberal (+5), 32% NDP (-), 15% Green (+3), 3% Conservative (-3), 19% Undecided (-6)
Among Decided & Leaning Voters: 37% Liberal (+2), 39% NDP (-), 21% Green (+2), 3% Conservative (-4)

 

“This week we tested campaign proposals to see what voters thought – interestingly while the Green Party’s proposal to increase the Foreign Buyers tax was the most popular of the three campaign planks we tested, voters don’t know it’s a BC Green campaign plank. 31% of British Columbians told us it was the BC NDP who put forward the Foreign Buyers Tax increase, another 16% said it was the Liberals – the Greens came in third when it came to their own platform. Only 16% correctly identified the proposal came from the Green Party.”

“When it comes to duelling bridge toll proposals British Columbians say the Liberal Plan is the better one. 45% of voters say they prefer the plan to cap bridge tolls annually at $500 while 31% say they prefer the plans to scrap the bridge tolls altogether,” finished Maggi.

-30-

Mainstreet BC April 12-14 by Mainstreet on Scribd

BC-360

Liberals, NDP Gain as Campaign Begins

April 12, 2017 (Ottawa, ON) – A new Mainstreet/Postmedia poll finds the BC NDP and BC Liberals both gaining support while the Green party remains steady at 19%. The Mainstreet/Postmedia poll has a margin of error of +/- 1.32 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

“The NDP has extended its lead ever so slightly” said Quito Maggi, President of Mainstreet Research. “They are ahead by 4 percent among decided & leaning voters – but it’s important to remember there is a long way to go in this campaign. This poll was taken in the 5 days before the writs dropped and we expect to see movement as voters begin to learn more about each party’s platform.”

“This is the Green Party’s 3rd week at 19%, just shy of the psychological 20% ceiling. However in good news for the Greens their support is more committed, 46% of their voters say they won’t change their minds compared to just 36% last week That is movement in the right direction.”

Among all voters: 27% Liberal (+1), 31% NDP (+2), 12% Green (-1), 6% Conservative (-3), 25% Undecided (+2)
Among Decided & Leaning Voters: 35% Liberal (+2), 39% NDP (+3), 19% Green (-), 7 Conservative (-4)

“Campaign proposals are coming fast from all parties but there’s a couple of key dates we are looking at. April 18th is the deadline for candidates to register with Elections British Columbia – that is just days away. Will the Green Party actually file a full slate? And how many candidates will the BC Conservatives actually field? With less than 10 candidates at the moment, the BC Conservatives will likely fall off our surveys unless they are able to field substantially more candidates.”

“This week, we saw support for the Conservatives take a sharp drop, perhaps as voters finally begin to realize that they are not a factor in the campaign and non-existent in media coverage. It’s not immediately clear that those voters moved to any of the 3 main parties, this week we also saw a small increase in the number of undecided voters in general.”

-30-

Mainstreet – BC April 6-10 by Mainstreet on Scribd

BC-360

As B.C. Election Begins, Minority Looms

April 7, 2017 (Ottawa, ON) – A new Mainstreet/Postmedia poll finds the NDP continues to lead province wide, while the Greens have held onto gains made last week. The Mainstreet/Postmedia poll has a margin of error of +/- 2.41 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

“The NDP continues to lead in the province but it is a tight race when we look at decided and leaning voters” said Quito Maggi, President of Mainstreet Research. “The NDP and Liberals are essentially tied and all three parties seem to be doing well in different parts of the province. The NDP are seeing their strength come from the Greater Vancouver area, the Greens are leading the NDP on Vancouver Island by 1 percentage point, essentially leaving them tied given the margin of error, and the BC Liberals are doing best in the interior and north. If an election were held today the result would likely be a minority government.”

“There’s two ways to look at Green support this week, given that their numbers are essentially unchanged from last week: you could say that the Greens have stalled or you could say that they have been able to hang on to their newfound support.”

Among all voters: 26% Liberal, 29% NDP, 13% Green, 9% Conservative, 23% Undecided
Among Decided & Leaning Voters: 33% Liberal, 36% NDP, 19% Green, 11 Conservative

“This week we asked about affordable housing and whether the BC government has a role to play. 58% of British Columbian say it does though that number falls outside of Greater Vancouver (67%) and Vancouver Island (64%) to just 37%. 12% of British Columbians say the federal government should have sole responsibility while 10% say municipal governments should have sole responsibility.”

“We asked British Columbians about a host of taxes that could stem speculation in the real estate industry. Despite telling us in previous polling that the foreign buyers tax was ineffective, the foreign buyers taxed polled highest at 37%. Other options included a tax on non-first time home buyers (13% support), a tax on corporate home buyers (15%) and combining all three tax proposals (25% support).

”Lastly, we asked what British Columbians thought of giving families in Vancouver assistance or a tax credit if they could prove they worked in the city. While the idea is popular in Greater Vancouver (65% support) it has less than 1 third support in the rest of the province,” finished Maggi.

-30-

Mainstreet – BC April 1-3 by Mainstreet on Scribd

BC-360

Greens Tie Liberals for First on Vancouver Island

April 1, 2017 (Ottawa, ON) – A new Mainstreet/Postmedia poll finds the B.C. Greens continue to gain – and now tie the B.C. Liberals on Vancouver Island for first place. The Mainstreet/Postmedia poll has a margin of error of +/- 2.41 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

“It’s another week of growth for the Greens this week” said Quito Maggi, President of Mainstreet Research. “But many questions remain as to whether voters will actually vote for the Green Party at the ballot box. Only 35% of Green Party Voters say their vote is locked in – 45% of Green Voters say they may change their mind. To be sure, a vote is a vote is a vote – but only if it’s actually cast and counted.”

“The strength of the Green Party vote has fallen but this is mainly a result of the fact they are adding new supporters. The Strength of the B.C. Liberal vote is strongest at 73% followed by that of the BC NDP at 64%.”

Among all voters: 25% Liberal, 29% NDP, 14% Green, 9% Conservative, 23% Undecided
Among Decided & Leaning Voters: 34% Liberal, 36% NDP, 19% Green, 11 Conservative

“This week we stopped asking BC Conservative Voters about their vote strength and second choice to instead ask them what they plan to do if there is no Conservative Candidate in their riding.”

The question was: So far, the B.C. Conservatives have nominated 6 candidates out of 87 constituencies. If there is no B.C. Conservative in your riding who would you vote for?

B.C. Conservatives said: 11% would vote for the B.C. Liberals, 20% would vote for the B.C. NDP, 9% would vote for the B.C. Greens, 37% are undecided in what they would do and 23% said they would not vote at all.

“Using these numbers we’re able to create a new voter intention number – ‘Decided and Leaning with BC Conservative Voters Reassigned’,” continued Maggi. “Using this new measure we can show what would happen if the Conservatives had no candidates at all. Those new numbers are 37% for the B.C. Liberals, 41% for the B.C. NDP and 22% for the B.C. Greens.”

“When we look at the standard decided and leaning number we see just a gap between the Liberals and NDP of just two percentage points. This is an incredibly tight race,” he finished.

-30-

Mainstreet – BC March 25-27 by Mainstreet on Scribd

Mainstreet – BC March 25-27 – Issues by Mainstreet on Scribd

BC-360

Greens Gain; Party Leaders’ Favourability Virtually Unchanged

March 23, 2017 (Ottawa, ON) – A new Mainstreet/Postmedia poll finds the B.C. Greens up 4 percentage points at the expense of the NDP and Liberals. The Mainstreet/Postmedia poll has a margin of error of +/- 2.53 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

“It’s a sharp uptick for the Greens this week – but the question is whether they will be able to maintain that support” said Quito Maggi, President of Mainstreet Research. “Only 42% of B.C. Green Party Voters say their support is strong – significantly lower than for the 3 other parties. Meanwhile, Green Party leader Andrew Weaver continues to be a virtual unknown in the province, with over 50% of voters saying they are not familiar with him or have no clear opinion.”

“The BC Greens should be taken seriously – but they will need to solidify their leadership standings and support strength to shake off the appearance of being placeholders.”

 

“The Favourability ratings for the three party leaders are all relatively unchanged from when we last looked at their ratings from February 25-26. Christy Clark now registers a net disapproval rating of -31, while John Horgan is at +7 and Andrew Weaver is at +2.”

“When it comes to replacing the George Massey Bridge, Greater Vancouver residents are split. 31% support a 10-lane toll bridge while 29% support the position of local mayors: a smaller, less expensive bridge with expanded public transit. 12% would like to see something else while another 28% are undecided on the matter.”

-30-

Mainstreet – BC March 18-20 by Mainstreet on Scribd

BC-360

Despite Campaign Finance Controversy, Liberals & NDP Each Gain

March 16, 2017 (Ottawa, ON) – A new Mainstreet/Postmedia poll finds the BC Liberals and BC NDP both up 1 percentage point among decided and leaning voters – despite negative headline surrounding the parties on campaign finance. The Mainstreet/Postmedia poll has a margin of error of +/- 2.13 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

“It’s another relatively stable week” said Quito Maggi, President of Mainstreet Research. “Perhaps what’s most interesting is what isn’t happening. Despite negative stories surrounding fundraising practices there has been little to no impact on both the major political parties in British Columbia. The movement we’ve seen comes at the regional level where the Liberals have gained 3 percentage point in the Greater Vancouver area and the NDP have gained 3 points on Vancouver Island.”

“This week also saw the announcement of ride-hailing in the province – a move which a majority of British Columbians approve of (52%).”

“Despite the fact there was no dip in support for the major parties (the undecided rate fell slightly this week as well), British Columbians support a variety of campaign finance reform measures.”

“74% support contribution limits, 68% would ban donations from outside the province, 48% would ban donations from unions and 54% would ban corporate donations.”

“When it comes to Liberal voters 64% of them support contribution limits, 51% would ban donations from outside the province, 47% would ban donations from unions and 38% would ban donations from corporations (45% say corporations should be allowed to donate).”

“It will be interesting to see how support levels hold up as this story develops. Perhaps voters currently see the issue as mostly an administrative one – or something the parties were not at fault in – this might change if the story develops and charges are laid. So far there is nothing that suggests either the Liberals or NDP were actively involved in the controversy – but facts have not stopped voters from coming to their own conclusions in the past.”

“We asked British Columbians this week if they felt Whales and Dolphins should continue to be displayed in captivity and the results are a virtual tie. 43% say the practice should continue while 40% say the practice should stop. Opposition to displaying whales and dolphins was highest in Greater Vancouver (44% opposed),” finished Maggi.

-30-

Mainstreet – BC March 11-12 by Mainstreet on Scribd

BC-360

B.C. NDP Continues to Lead; B.C. Voters Back Income Assistance Increase

March 9, 2017 (Ottawa, ON) – A new Mainstreet/Postmedia poll finds British Columbians overwhelmingly favour an increase to social assistance rates for those with disabilities. The Mainstreet/Postmedia poll has a margin of error of +/- 2.09 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

“We’ve seen another relatively stable week in voter intentions albeit with some regional fluctuation” said Quito Maggi, President of Mainstreet Research. “What’s clear from our tracking so far is that a large amount of voters are still undecided making it tough to come to any conclusions on what election outcome we could expect today. What we do know is that the NDP is performing well but their vote is less solid than that of the Liberals.”

“Despite calls from advocates for a significant increase in income assistance for those with disabilities, no such increase came when the B.C. budget was tabled.”

“On this issue, British Columbians have clear opinions: 75% say income assistance should be increased. Only 13% back the government’s position they should be essentially frozen while a small number, 4%, say income assistance should be decreased.”

“When it comes to the minimum wage many support a proposal to increase it to $15/hour. 55% support the proposal across the province while 35% oppose it and 10% are not sure.”

“Finally, when we look at income assistance rates in general, there is majority support for an increase. Conservative voters are the only voting group who oppose the proposal more than they support it, registering net opposition of -8 (45% Oppose, 37% Support).

“All other voters are generally in favour of the proposal with support weakest among Liberals. Net support is +69 for NDP Supporters, +46 for Green Party Voters, and +23 for Undecided voters – though only +6 for Liberals.”

“Province-wide, 57% support an increase to income assistance, 25% oppose the proposal and 18% are not sure either way.”

-30-

Mainstreet – BC March 4-5 by Mainstreet on Scribd

BC-360

NDP Lead Post Budget – But Undecided Still High

March 2, 2017 (Ottawa, ON) – A new Mainstreet/Postmedia poll finds the BC NDP pulling away to a 5-point lead among decided and leaning voters – but many voters across the province are still undecided. The Mainstreet/Postmedia poll has a margin of error of +/- 2.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

“On the surface this is a good news week for the NDP” said Quito Maggi, President of Mainstreet Research. “Among decided and leaning voters they are now leading by 5%. However, the BC Liberals have gained in the ‘Rest of BC’ where the undecided vote has plummeted. What that tells us is that the BC Liberals may have hidden strength. They may not be able to peel supporters away from the other parties, but they may not need to if they can influence an outsized portion of the undecided electorate.”

“Pollsters typically only report ‘Decided’ or ‘Decided & Leaning’ numbers. Some do this because their assumption is that undecided voters will vote the same way the decided voters will, or that undecided voters will not vote at all. Given the numbers we are seeing in BC we think this is a dangerous assumption to make. It‘s important to remember voters lead busy lives – many will not have tuned in to budget coverage and won’t learn about the policy proposals until much later on in the election campaign.”

 

“While the NDP are now leading in Greater Vancouver they should be wary of celebrating just yet. 22% of British Columbians presently don’t know whether they have a favourable or unfavourable view of Christy Clark. That number is more than double for John Horgan at 50%. It is 66% for Green Party Leader Andrew Weaver. If the NDP are not careful, it will be Christy Clark and Liberal Party advertising that will fill in the blanks.”

“The Green Party is down slightly this week (-2) within the margin of error. Regionally they are registering lower scores now in the ‘Rest of BC’ but this is primarily a result of the undecided rate there now being so low.”

“The BC Conservatives gained this week in spite of – or perhaps because – no leader or interim leader. Where the BC Conservative vote moves to will be crucial to watch if they are not able to field a full slate as expected.”

“57% of British Columbians told us this week that the foreign buyers tax has had no effect on home affordability. Despite this, 60% said the policy was a good idea (23% said it was a bad one). Even 56% of voters who said the policy made no difference still said the policy was a good idea.”

“46% of voters are in favour of a $10 childcare plan – despite the cost. The policy is popular with BC’s undecided voters registering a net score of +16 (support – opposition).”

“It’s a different story for the NDP and Green Party proposal to eliminate MSPs entirely with a hike to the income tax rate. BC Voters are split with 38% opposed and 36% in favour, but BC’s undecided voters register net opposition of -10 (opposition – support),” finished Maggi.

-30-

Mainstreet – BC February 25-26 by Mainstreet on Scribd

BC-360

Deadlock, Uncertainty as BC Election Nears

February 21, 2017 (Ottawa, ON) – A new Mainstreet/Postmedia poll finds a deadlock between Christy Clark’s Liberals and John Horgan’s NDP with almost 1 in 3 British Columbians undecided. The Mainstreet/Postmedia poll has a margin of error of +/- 2.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

“This is an incredibly close race,” said Quito Maggi, President of Mainstreet Research. “Among decided and leaning voters, it is a virtual tie in the Greater Vancouver area, it would be impossible to predict what the result would be with these kinds of numbers. Once again, we are finding the Green Party in competitive shape. Outside Greater Vancouver the Green Party is scoring 22% with decided & leaning voters – however Green Party supporters are the most likely to say they will change their minds (48%).”

 

“Supporters of the Liberals and NDP are evenly matched in the strength of their support. 63% of Liberal voters and 62% of NDP voters say they won’t be changing their minds before Election Day. The highest strength of support is among BC Conservatives voters – 68% of them say they won’t change their minds. If the BC Conservatives fail to run a full slate across the province one interesting question will be who these voters support – or if they even show up to vote at all.”

“53% of Green Party supporters say the NDP is their second choice – and inverse is true of soft NDP supporters who say the Green Party would be their second choice. Troublingly for the Liberals they do not lead as the second choice of either the NDP, Greens or Conservatives.”

“These numbers have to be somewhat troubling for Christy Clark, they point to limited growth potential – but they are positive too. For now, the Green Party is doing well across the province, even if they have a tenuous grasp on those votes, and that helps local Liberal candidates on the ground.”

“The election campaign hasn’t officially started. What we know right now is that we don’t know enough,” Maggi finished.

-30-

Mainstreet – BC February 18-19 by Mainstreet on Scribd

BC-360

BC NDP Lead Liberals, 38% to 33%

September 20, 2016 (Ottawa, ON) – A new Mainstreet/Postmedia poll finds the BC NDP leading the BC Liberals by 5% among decided and leaning voters. With 2,207 respondents surveyed from September 7-8, the Mainstreet/Postmedia Poll has a margin of error of +/- 2.09%, 19 times out of 20.

REGIONALS PAINT DETAILED PICTURE

“We’re seeing three different British Columbias”, said Quito Maggi, President of Mainstreet Research. “While the NDP are leading on Vancouver Island 48%-23%, with the Greens a close third at 20%, it’s the Liberals who are leading in the Interior 36%-31%. Meanwhile, the NDP hold a slim lead in Greater Vancouver just outside the margin of error.”

“However there is weakness in the NDP’s support. While 50% of voters say the economy will be important when casting their ballot, only 21% say the NDP are focused on job creation compared to 41% for the Liberals. 1-in 5 voters could not say if the NDP had a priority at all, more than double the 8% the BC Liberals scored on the same measure.”

ECONOMIC OPTIMISM RELATIVELY HIGH

“With a bleak picture of economic optimism in next door neighbour Alberta, BC has relatively high scores. Asked about the BC economy respondents are split, 42%-40% but asked about their own personal finances respondents are much more positive. 52% say they are optimistic about their own personal financial outlook for the next 12 months. Perhaps more concerning for the BC Liberals should be only 39% of British Columbians think the province is headed in the right direction while 31% say it is headed in the wrong direction. With 1-in-3 voters not sure, it doesn’t look like either party has been successful in selling a narrative about the state of the province. Young respondents (18-34) and seniors (65+) were the most likely to say BC is headed in the wrong direction, and BC seniors, an important voting block, were the most indecisive with 45% saying they didn’t know.”

OPINIONS DEADLOCKED ON KINDER MORGAN

“When we asked about approval of the proposed Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion we found opinion deadlocked with 43% opposed and 42% in favour”, continued Maggi. “Despite these numbers only 27% of British Columbians believe the pipeline won’t be built while 39% believe it will be built regardless and another 34% aren’t sure.

”Despite their own personal opposition it does look like some British Columbians have begun to accept the Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion may be approved regardless. These numbers are very similar to the ones we have found in British Columbia in previous polling.“

“Opposition to Kinder Morgan was heavily split among gender with 46% of Women disapproving (36% approval) and 49% of men approving (40% disapproval).”

SLIGHTLY MORE OPPOSED TO NORTHERN GATEWAY

“Scores for the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline were slightly more negative than those for Kinder Morgan. 46% oppose the Northern Gateway project with 40% in favour, a 6 point gap. Fewer also believe it will be built regardless of their own personal support for the project (35%) while roughly the same amount (27%) don’t believe the project will be completed. Of note, while 28% strongly disapprove of Kinder Morgan, 32% strongly disapprove of Northern Gateway. Opposition is more pronounced.

BRITISH COLUMBIANS LIKE THE NEW BC CLIMATE CHANGE PLAN

”If the NDP’s job was to convince British Columbians the new BC Liberal Climate Change plan was a disaster they mostly failed. Only 47% say they’ve been following news about the new climate change plan and 36% have no opinion about it. 38% say they approve and 26% say they disapprove.

“Most tellingly, when we asked those respondents who disapprove of the plan why, only 53% said it was because the plan didn’t go far enough. 28%, almost 1-in-3, said the plan went too far and would hurt business, the remainder was undecided.”

“As the BC election approaches economic issues and party organization will become more important than ever. While the NDP currently has a 5% lead over the Liberals, the NDP have led in the polls before only to be disappointed when the votes are counted. What should concern them is many more British Columbians don’t know where they stand compared to the Liberals.”

“There are numbers here that should upset the Liberals as well and with many British Columbians opposed to new pipelines how they handle any potential pipeline approvals by the federal government may define how voters ultimately view their environmental record. While BC is not suffering the same economic malaise as Alberta or Saskatchewan, low economic optimism for the province should come as a concern,” finished Maggi.

About Mainstreet Research
Mainstreet is a national public research firm. With 20 years of political experience at all three levels of government, President and CEO Quito Maggi is a respected commentator on Canadian public affairs.

Differentiated by its large sample sizes, Mainstreet Research has provided accurate snapshots of public opinion, having predicted a majority NDP government in Alberta, a majority Liberal government in British Columbia and a majority Liberal government in Ontario. Mainstreet has been the most accurate polling firm in several by elections and the most recent Toronto mayoral election. Most recently, Mainstreet was the only polling firm to correctly predict a Liberal majority government in the 2015 federal election.

-30-

Mainstreet – BC September by Mainstreet on Scribd