Monday, June 18, 2007

Proof Positive that Democracy Just Doesn't Work

Either that, or polling doesn't work [Toronto Star, Liberals see assets fade in new poll]:

More respondents – 37 per cent – thought NDP Leader Jack Layton would be a good prime minister, compared with just 25 per cent who preferred Dion.

When people were asked to name the top environmental party, 67 per cent chose the Green party, 45 per cent chose the NDP, while just 22 per cent said the Liberals were the best on the environment.

Even the old ethics cloud hasn't cleared – New Democrats were seen as honest and ethical by 45 per cent of respondents, while only 24 per cent said they would characterize Liberals that way. Only 28 per cent said the Liberal party had done enough to regain the trust of Canadians after the sponsorship scandal of Jean Chr├ętien's years in power.

Still, and perhaps paradoxically, more people are considering voting Liberal than for the Greens or the NDP, according to the poll.

Those who would definitely or probably vote Liberal total 34 per cent, while only 30 per cent said they would definitely or probably vote NDP. For the Greens, that figure was 25 per cent. The Greens netted only about 5 per cent of the popular vote in the last election.

Emphasis mine.

The only thing I can figure is that Canadians feel that federal politics is some sort of zero-sum game. If you don't vote Conservative, then you must vote Liberal no matter how dishonest you believe them to be, no matter how much you'd prefer a different party in power.

It's almost a good argument itself for electoral reform. It's sad, though.

This is how the poll results will appear to Liberals:

More respondents – 37 per cent – thought NDP Leader Jack Layton would be a good prime minister, compared with just 25 per cent who preferred Dion.

When people were asked to name the top environmental party, 67 per cent chose the Green party, 45 per cent chose the NDP, while just 22 per cent said the Liberals were the best on the environment.

Even the old ethics cloud hasn't cleared – New Democrats were seen as honest and ethical by 45 per cent of respondents, while only 24 per cent said they would characterize Liberals that way. Only 28 per cent said the Liberal party had done enough to regain the trust of Canadians after the sponsorship scandal of Jean Chr├ętien's years in power.

Still, and perhaps paradoxically, more people are considering voting Liberal than for the Greens or the NDP, according to the poll.

Those who would definitely or probably vote Liberal total 34 per cent, while only 30 per cent said they would definitely or probably vote NDP. For the Greens, that figure was 25 per cent. The Greens netted only about 5 per cent of the popular vote in the last election.

2 comments:

Scott Tribe said...

Again, this is another of the "online polls" that Angus-Reid is trying to validate as being legitimate. I put little stock into online polls, regardless of the result it brings up. They are simply too easy to manipulate with politically active people wanting to get online to try and "freep" the thing.

Jim said...

Freeping usually has the effect of skewing the results in one general way, and in significantly more obvious way. I just don't see any benefit of "freeping" this poll this way to paint the Greens and the NDP (and Jack Layton in particular) in a positive light, but somehow manage to have the Libs come out on top in the end.

While I believe you in general (and I said as much at the beginning of the post), the results have a ringing of truth.

The Liberals best won strategy is the fact they advertise themselves as being not-Conservative; ie, the so-called lesser of two evils. So, even though somebody might like Jack and the NDP better, it's better overall to vote Liberal, even if the voter can't stand them.