Trudeau Government’s Approval Rating Drops to 52% (Down 7 Points), as Six in Ten (58%) say Government’s Tax Changes about Money, Not Fairness

NDP (23%) Receives Post-Leadership Election Bounce; Liberals (38%) Still Well Ahead of Tories (30%)

Trudeau Government’s Approval Rating Drops to 52% (Down 7 Points), as Six in Ten (58%) say Government’s Tax Changes about Money, Not Fairness

The author(s)

  • Darrell Bricker CEO, Global
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Toronto, Ontario, October 29, 2017 — The Trudeau government’s approval rating has dropped 7 points since mid-September, likely a result of the troubles currently being experienced by Finance Minister Bill Morneau and the government’s ill-communicated small-business tax reforms, according to a new Ipsos poll conducted on behalf Global News.

A slim majority (52%) of Canadians still approve of the Liberal government under Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, but only 10% do so “strongly”, and approval is down 7 points in one month. Conversely, nearly half (48%) disapprove (23% strongly/25% somewhat). The country is divided: Approval is high in Atlantic Canada (70%), British Columbia (62%) and Quebec (59%), moderate in Ontario (48%) and low in Saskatchewan and Manitoba (34%) and Alberta (33%).

The decline in approval rating has not corresponded to a drop in vote intentions for the Liberals, however. In fact, the only significant movement is a three-point improvement in support for the NDP, likely because the election of their new, charismatic leader Jagmeet Singh and the increased media attention paid to the party as a result.

If an election were held tomorrow, 38% of decided voters would vote for the Liberal Party (down 1 point), while 30% of the popular vote would go to the Tories (down 2 points). The NDP would garner 23% of the vote (up 3 points), while the Bloc would receive 4% nationally (18% in Quebec), down 1 point. The remaining 4% would go towards the Green Party and other parties (unchanged). Two in ten (22%) are either unsure (14%) or would not vote (8%).


Tax Reforms Seen to be about Money, not Fairness

Last summer, the Government of Canada held consultations across Canada concerning a series of proposed changes that they said were designed to make the tax system fairer and critics said were designed to increase government revenues at the expense of small businesses, farmers and doctors. The media has paid a lot of attention to these proposed changes and the blowback by concerned groups who say the changes will adversely impact their businesses as a result.

Four in ten (38%) Canadians say they’re paying attention to this discussion either very closely (6%) or somewhat closely (32%), driven by men (47%) more than women (30%) and those aged 55+ (47%). It’s also of interest to Conservative voters, 61% of whom are paying attention to the debate. Among those paying attention, it’s largely through traditional news outlets (55%), more so than social media (12%) – but 32% are following the issue through both traditional and social media.

Canadians’ overall verdict is that the government’s changes are more about money than fairness:
• Six in ten (58%) more closely believe that the Government’s intentions were to find a new source of revenue to help cover the cost of previously-announced spending. Even four in ten (38%) Liberal voters feel this way.
• Four in ten (42%) more closely believe that the government’s intentions were to take a first step forward toward making the tax system fairer.

The way Canadians feel about the motivation driving these tax changes does not fluctuate based on one’s propensity to be following the issue in the news, nor by the means through which someone receives their news (traditional vs. social), or age, or gender. It does vary by geography, however: Residents of Saskatchewan and Manitoba (77%) are the most likely to believe the proposed tax changes were motivated by money, not fairness, followed by those living in Alberta (67%), Ontario (61%), Atlantic Canada (54%), British Columbia (49%) and Quebec (48%).

These are some of the findings of an Ipsos poll conducted between October 23 and 25, 2017 for Global News. For this survey, a sample of 1,001 Canadians aged 18+ from Ipsos' online panel was interviewed online. Weighting was then employed to balance demographics to ensure that the sample's composition reflects that of the adult population according to Census data and to provide results intended to approximate the sample universe. The precision of Ipsos online polls is measured using a credibility interval. In this case, the poll is accurate to within ±3.5 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, had all Canadian adults been polled. The credibility interval will be wider among subsets of the population. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to coverage error, and measurement error.

For more information on this news release, please contact:
Darrell Bricker, PhD
CEO, Ipsos Global Public Affairs


About Ipsos Public Affairs

Ipsos Public Affairs is a non-partisan, objective, survey-based research practice made up of seasoned professionals. We conduct strategic research initiatives for a diverse number of Canadian American and international organizations, based not only on public opinion research, but elite stakeholder, corporate, and media opinion research.

Ipsos has media partnerships with the most prestigious news organizations around the world. In Canada, Ipsos Public Affairs is the polling partner for Global News. Internationally, Ipsos Public Affairs is the media polling supplier to Reuters News, the world's leading source of intelligent information for businesses and professionals. Ipsos Public Affairs is a member of the Ipsos Group, a leading global survey-based market research company. We provide boutique-style customer service and work closely with our clients, while also undertaking global research.


About Ipsos

Ipsos is an independent market research company controlled and managed by research professionals. Founded in France in 1975, Ipsos has grown into a worldwide research group with a strong presence in all key markets. Ipsos ranks third in the global research industry.

With offices in 88 countries, Ipsos delivers insightful expertise across five research specializations: brand, advertising and media, customer loyalty, marketing, public affairs research, and survey management.

Ipsos researchers assess market potential and interpret market trends. They develop and build brands. They help clients build long-term relationships with their customers. They test advertising and study audience responses to various media and they measure public opinion around the globe.

Ipsos has been listed on the Paris Stock Exchange since 1999 and generated global revenues of €1,669.5 ($2,218.4 million) in 2014.

The author(s)

  • Darrell Bricker CEO, Global