SNC-Lavalin Case Does Not Affect Chances for Liberal Party Re-Election, Poll Shows
The federal ethics commissioner’s scathing report on how Prime Minister Justin Trudeau handled the SNC-Lavalin affair does not appear to be undermining the Liberal Party’s chances of re-election.
A Léger poll conducted for Canadian Press a few days after the tabling of Commissioner Mario Dion’s report found that 33 per cent of Canadians’ voting intentions were between the Liberal Party and the Conservative Party (CCP), just over two month of general elections.
The Léger House therefore concludes that the popular favor with the Liberals remained at about the same level as in July, well before Commissioner Dion made his observations.
For its part, the Conservative Party fell by three percentage points between July and August, despite the party’s efforts to revive public outrage over the SNC-Lavalin affair, which propelled the Conservatives to a 13 points ahead of the Liberals at the height of the controversy last April.
Mario Dion said in his report that Prime Minister Trudeau had violated the Conflict of Interest Act by unduly exerting pressure on former Attorney General Jody Wilson-Raybould to have the Prosecution Service enter into a suspended prosecution agreement. with Montreal-based engineering giant SNC-Lavalin, accused of corruption.
The poll, conducted Aug. 16-19, gives 13 percent of the popular vote to the Green Party (PV) and 11 percent to the New Democratic Party (NDP). The People’s Party of Canada (CPP) Maxime Bernier gets 4 percent support.
In Quebec, the Liberal Party is ahead with 34 per cent of the vote, ahead of the Conservatives at 27 per cent, the Bloc Québécois at 18 per cent, the Green Party at 9 per cent, the NDP at 8 per cent and the People’s Party at 4 percent.
The survey was conducted on the web with 1535 respondents; no margin of error has been established.
Weariness in the SNC-Lavalin affair?
Léger vice-president Christian Bourque said the latest results suggest that voters largely left the SNC-Lavalin affair behind and moved on to issues that concerned them more directly, at least for the time being.
The two main parties are back in the neck, a situation that prevailed in February, before the SNC-Lavalin controversy rocked the Liberal government, costing Justin Trudeau two ministers and his most trusted adviser.
“I think those who changed their minds about the Prime Minister and he turned their backs had already done so in the spring,” Bourque said in an interview.
But he thinks other Canadians seem rather tired of this case and say to themselves “no matter how I feel about the Prime Minister’s behavior, in the end, how does that change my life and that of my children? ”
Bourque adds, however, that “that does not mean (that the case) will not come back to haunt the Prime Minister” during the campaign, especially if the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) decided to conduct an investigation, such as the Chief. Conservative Party Andrew Scheer has repeatedly called for.
The poll gave the Liberals a strong lead in the Atlantic provinces, Quebec, Ontario and British Columbia. The Conservatives have a considerable lead in Alberta, as well as Manitoba and Saskatchewan, with 55 per cent support in both regions.
In Ontario, where more than a third of seats are, the Conservatives seem to be suffering from a “ripple effect” on the unpopularity of the Progressive Conservative provincial government of Doug Ford, Bourque said. The Liberals have the support of 38 per cent of Ontarians, compared to 30 per cent for the Conservatives, 14 per cent for the Greens, 13 per cent for the NDP and 3 per cent for the Popular Party.
Note to readers: Corrected version. It should be noted that support for the Conservative Party fell by three percentage points between July and August, not a point as previously stated.