Federal Liberals rebound in Atlantic Canada

Teresa Wright
Send to a friend

Send this article to a friend.

This graphic shows the trend lines for decided voters in Atlantic Canada from 2000 to the end of 2012, according to Corporate Research Associates.

The federal Liberals have moved to the head of the pack in voter support in Atlantic Canada, according to the latest Corporate Research Associates poll.

The poll, released this morning, shows support for the federal Liberal party has increased its standings in all four Atlantic provinces, jumping to 36 per cent regionally, up from 23 per cent in November 2011. This places them ahead of the other three main political parties in the region – the first time the party has done so since August of 2010.

Prince Edward Island saw the biggest surge in support for the Liberals in Ottawa. When asked what party they would vote for if an election were held today, 52 per cent of Islanders said they would vote Liberal. That’s an increase of 24 percentage points since November 2011.

The governing Conservatives were on the back end of this swing in support. Stephen Harper’s Tories lost major ground in P.E.I., dropping 27 points from 50 per cent to 23 per cent.

This was echoed regionally, if perhaps less drastically, with support for the Conservative party down nine points to 30 per cent.

Noteworthy also is a rise in the number of those polled who responded they are undecided, would not answer or do not plan to vote.

Regionally, this number has risen from 41 to 44 per cent. In P.E.I., this number stands at 49 per cent, up from 45 per cent one year ago.

Despite the drop in support for his party, Prime Minister Stephen Harper is still the most popular party leader at 28 per cent among Atlantic Canadians, down from 30 per cent last year.

This is not the case in P.E.I., however, where he is the preferred choice for prime minister by only 20 per cent of Islanders. This places him behind Interim Liberal Leader Bob Rae/ the next Liberal leader, who gained 10 points in P.E.I. and now stands at 31 per cent.

Regionally, Rae also gained ground, jumping from 13 per cent in 2011 to 24 per cent in 2012, giving him the backing of one-quarter of Atlantic Canadians.

Support for NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair remained steady at 22 per cent, but this is in spite of a drop in support for the party in the region.

The NDP dropped six percentage points to 30 per cent in Atlantic Canada. In P.E.I., however, the NDP’s numbers remained fairly steady, with a rise of one point from 21 to 22 per cent.

The federal Green party has also made gains over the last year. Regionally the Greens are at four per cent, up from two. And in P.E.I. the party jumped from one per cent support to four per cent.

Leader Elizabeth May, the lone Green party member in the House of Commons, gained three points in leadership support in Atlantic Canada and two points in P.E.I.

The majority of those polled both regionally and provincially said they are dissatisfied with the Harper government. 

The poll surveyed 1,500 Atlantic Canadians over the age of 18 years, between Nov. 7 and Dec. 1, 2012. Results are considered accurate within plus or minus 2.5 percentage points, 95 times out of 100.


More to come online with a full report, including a breakdown in the numbers, in the print-edition of The Guardian tomorrow.




Organizations: Corporate Research Associates, Conservatives

Geographic location: Atlantic Canada, Prince Edward Island, Ottawa

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Thanks for voting!

Top of page



Recent comments

  • wayne weeks
    January 09, 2013 - 12:09

    Well we chose to have a democracy and this is democracy at work. We have our say at the polls but that does not stop some from thinking they can sway others by their party choice in criticizing the choice of others.We tend to say what we don't like rather than what we like about our party of choice and the leaders. Few are swayed by comments of hate to change their views..it only reinforces their choice.

  • Angus
    January 09, 2013 - 11:30

    @nukem dukem - many Islanders need the pogey so they can sit on their Azzes - drink beer and play old timers hockey. We are into the 4th and 5th generations in some cases who have made a career of this. Doesn't matter anyway. The maritimes can do what they like; vote either of the opposition parties and they'll again be on the outside looking in for at least 8 years and maybe longer Federally. Elsewhere in Canada, Justin and the Liberal Caucus, along with Mulcair, Charlie Angus etc. because of their support for Chief Theresa Spence's financial fiascos and Idle No More's protest tactics have just assured another Harper Conservative election victory. Guaranteed!

  • Nuke Dukem
    January 09, 2013 - 10:05

    dats right... no shock there as harpers trying to destory PEI by getting rid of the pogey! many islanders need it to survive and it's the cons fault that we're getting wiped off the map. fight back pei and vote justin/ghiz!

  • Run Forest, Run . . .
    January 09, 2013 - 07:27

    The Federal Liberals could embody the second coming, but if Mr. Ghiz has anything to do with them I'm running in the opposite direction . . . where ever that may be. Forget the one bad apple proverb, what about a whole barrel of bad apples? Be it PNP or Plan B or any of the other fiascoes, this government has taught us that the word "Liberal" is just another word for self-interest.

  • Allan Wilder
    January 09, 2013 - 07:00

    HeeeeeeHawwwwwwwwwww, says the PEIslander, Hee Haw. What a low level bunch of ignorant donkeys. Bend over islanders, here it comes again says your leader..

  • Kevin Kelly
    January 09, 2013 - 00:14

    23% Conservative support on PEI! How can that be? Who are these 23%? I can understand people voting Liberal, NDP. Green and any other colour but to purposely support a party that has zero respect or interest in their home province makes me wonder. Harpers sole interest has been travelling about the world as a shill for the oil and gas industries in his home province of Alberta. Not only have the conservatives done zero for PEI, they have destroyed many well paying jobs and completely ignored the fishing industry. Can this 23% name a single thing the Conservatives have done for PEI? Can you hear the pin drop?

  • SG
    January 08, 2013 - 23:46

    Rose Hicken: I can't understand why any Conservative would shift to the Federal Liberal Party given their choice of their next Leader ie: Justin Trudeau!! No Way will Justin get my Vote! What Experience, Qualifications would he have regarding the position of P.M.? The Former Candidate the Liberal Party supported was a U.S. Professor no less! How did that go? In my view, we don't need a Teacher we need an Leader.

  • John W. A. Curtis
    January 08, 2013 - 17:30

    People keep electing second string politicians like robert ghiz and after nearly 600 million dollars of debt there should have been more than seasonal employment. People want jobs, stop electing politicians who spend money on 14 week projects

  • Trevor Leclerc
    January 08, 2013 - 16:29

    To check out the NDP, the Charlottetown NDP riding association is meeting on January 15th at the Murphy Centre from 7- 9 p.m. Everyone is welcome.

  • SG
    January 08, 2013 - 14:56

    1. I don't put any creedence in any CRA Polls. The last CRA Poll taken only surveyed a MINUTE number of Islanders and yet showed an unbelievable percentage re: results! The Report states the Poll Surveyed only 1,500 Atlantic Canadians so how may Islanders do you suppose that covered? Yet CRA Reports 52% of Islanders stated they'd Vote Liberal! I have conducted surveys for CRA in the past ! 2. I will not be Voting for the Liberals or Conservatives Federally or Provincially in any Future Elections. I've had more than enough of Both Parties on Both Levels. 3. How could the NDP possibly do any worse? Justine Trudeau ? No Way. Not Ever. Liberal Party? Ditto on both levels. Time for CHANGE!

  • bob from cardigan
    January 08, 2013 - 14:40

    Rose, your provincial liberal party has already done enough to destroy PEI. No federal government cares about PEI that much with 4 seats.

  • Derek
    January 08, 2013 - 14:24

    I am sorry Joe Blow but the NDP are "pro" abortion and "pro" gays. I truly believe that just these two issues alone would comprimise what we cherish as Canadians. Since when was killing babies and condoning homosexuals the Canadian way???? So with that said, NDP is not a "decent option"...actually I see nothing "decent" about it...

    • Twiggy
      January 09, 2013 - 08:52

      Yeah and we have Stephen Harper stirring up abortion issues in Ottawa. And Robert Ghiz denying abortion services to women in PEI. So yes for reproductive rights for women it is NDP. All the way. Harper is making no mistake. He will smash PEI before he is done. As for Justin Trudeau he does not have the capacity to be the principal at the school where he used to teach drama so why shoud he be PM? Thomas Mulcair has the values, capacity and the courage to be a good PM. I do hope the Justin stuff is just a flirtation because I believe he is eveyr bit as fickle, unprincipled and misguided as Ghiz the Younger here. Justin has questioned supply management. He is more aggressive than Harper on allowing foreign ownership of resources. He has held two different positions on marijuana over the last few months. He may not be as nasty as a Harper but he has that loose, dangerous quality about him, just like Ghiz the Younger. Anything can happen with someone brougt to power on the wings of family name celebrity. PEI has proven that in the last five years with our pedigree premier- Plan B, HST, PNP, etc. I do not want to see how a Trudeau train wreck would compare. Not with the whole country. No way. Vote NDP!

    • pro-anti-bigotry
      January 09, 2013 - 22:27

      Derek, I can not believe the bigotry and hate in your comment. Canada recognizes the woman's right to choose her own reproductive health. Canada recognizes that people of all sexual orientation deserve equality. This is the Canada we live in now, and if those rights and freedoms are ever under attack I will always choose to vote for a "pro" abortion and "pro" gay government, as you so quaintly put it.

  • Not an option
    January 08, 2013 - 14:03

    What would make anyone think the NDP is the best option? What have they done in PEI to prove that they would be the best option? To blindly believe that they could lead is nothing more than a knee jerk reaction!

  • atlantic canadian
    January 08, 2013 - 13:33

    Tuesday, January 8 /13 when Mr. John a . Curtis said we don't need ottawa spoon feeding us I don't think any Islander or Maritimer wants to be so called spoon fed, but the reality of the current situation is our seasonal industry is going to be devasted with all the EI cuts and changes being made in Ottawa. seasonal workers have a right too , to live and work in the region of canada they want to live in. forcing people to relocate to the western provinces was addressed in the past and that concern was to have in our aging population, more young people to stay here in PEI where they can spend thier income in our local econnomy. so, even if that employment should be seasonal , and their were those I worked with that were, as well, seasonaly employed at least they could contribute to our local econnomy. but this is all very uncertain in the near future. another thing to consider is many that do work seasonaly , most go on to other employment opportunities so that before the summer months are gone, those in the seasonal industry can aquire as many weeks or hours as possiable. our small PEI econnomy has a seasonal industry , in which our Province depends on for the revenue it does generate in our econnomy.

  • Joe Blow
    January 08, 2013 - 12:50

    I'm not going to believe some poll the Liberals want us to see....the Liberals suck just as bad as the Conservatives!!! People need to remember that the NDP is the party that we all should be voting for....forget the Liberals and Conservatives....they have been nothing but corrupt parties that have continued to ruin Canada and the Canadian way of life!! I'm gonna vote for the party that promises to look after all Canadians first!!! I'm not voting for a party that wants to sell Canada to China. NDP is the only decent option right now when it comes to Federal and Provincial politics.

  • John W.A.Curtis
    January 08, 2013 - 12:34

    Islanders want Stephen Harper to spoon feed them Employment Insurance. Harper has taken steps to move P.E.I. towards a have promise , the Liberals will keep us on welfare.

    • intobed
      January 08, 2013 - 14:42

      Harper has not taken steps to move PEI to a "have province", he has taken steps to "eliminate" PEI as a province. He (with his partner Ghiz) is trying to destroy our economy and drive the population out west. With his shill, Mike Duffy, Harper is going to remove PEI as a province, and make us a small suburb of the mainland. Just like you want him to John.

    • islander
      January 08, 2013 - 15:07

      John W.A.Curtis where are the jobs .if you have a job on pei you are very lucky,I work everyday and i do not begrudge people that are on EI. would you sooner see them starve to death ,Seasonal employment remains a significant aspect of the economic landscape of PEI like it or not John W.A.Curtis..

  • Frankie Bacon
    January 08, 2013 - 12:23

    I bring no dog to this race. In an era of so much deception and corruption, I can't automatically trust any poll results.

  • Rose Hicken
    January 08, 2013 - 11:32

    It's obvious why Harper supporters have dropped in PEI. He is trying to destroy us and all of Atlantic Canada. I think the changes to EI is one of the reasons his supporters have shifted to the Federal Liberal party.