Vancouver, BC - A new Ipsos Reid poll in British Columbia shows the BC Liberals ending the year with a comfortable lead over the NDP. The BC Liberals currently have the support of 45% (down 2 points) of the province's voters - 9 points better than the NDP at 36% (down 1 point). The Green Party is now favoured by 16% (up 3 points) of decided voters, their highest level of support since September 2004.
Approval ratings for both main party leaders are up slightly from September. Gordon Campbell has a 50% approval rating as Premier, an increase of 3 points. Carole James has a 59% approval rating as NDP and opposition leader, an increase of 5 points.
When asked to choose which leader would make the better Premier, British Columbians narrowly select Gordon Campbell (48%) over Carole James (43%).
These are the findings of an Ipsos Reid telephone poll conducted between December 8 and December 18, 2006. The poll is based on a randomly selected sample of 800 adult British Columbians. With a sample of this size, the results are considered accurate to within 177 3.5 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, of what they would have been had the entire adult population of BC been polled. The margin of error will be larger within regions and for other sub-groupings of the survey population. These data were statistically weighted to ensure the sample's regional and age/sex composition reflects that of the actual BC population according to the 2001 Census data.
BC Liberals (45%, Down 2 Points) Lead NDP (36%, Down 1 Point) By 9 Points; Greens Make Gains (16%, Up 3 Points)
The BC Liberals continue to lead in the battle for voter support in British Columbia. The BC Liberals currently have the support of 45% (down 2 points) of the province's decided voters, a 9-point lead over the NDP at 36% (down 1 point). The Green Party, which currently has 16% support, is up 3 points from September and 6 points from June. These results exclude the 10% of British Columbians who are undecided or express no preference.
Some differences exist in voting preferences across subsets of BC's population:
- The BC Liberals lead by 25 points among men (54% Lib vs. 29% NDP), but trail by 5 points among women (37% Lib vs. 42% NDP).
- The BC Liberals lead by 32 points among higher income households (59% Lib vs. 27% NDP), but trail by 11 points among lower income households (32% Lib vs. 43% NDP). The two parties are effectively tied among the middle income segment (39% Lib vs. 41% NDP).
- The NDP lead by 13 points among union households (48% NDP vs. 35% Lib), while the BC Liberals lead by 21 points among non-union households (51% Lib vs. 30% NDP).
Approval Ratings Improve For Both Gordon Campbell (50%, Up 3 Points) And Carole James (59%, Up 5 Points)
British Columbians continue to be split in their assessments of Gordon Campbell's performance as Premier. Half (50%, up 3 points) of residents say they approve of Campbell's performance, including 12% "strongly" and 38% "moderately". Similarly, just less than half (46%, down 2 points) disapprove of his performance, including 28% "strongly" and 18% "moderately".
- Campbell's approval rating is higher with men (55% vs. 45% women), non-union residents (57% vs. 37% union) and higher income households (59% higher vs. 47% middle, 38% lower).
Carole James' approval rating as NDP and opposition leader is up 5 points to 59% (11% "strongly", 49% "moderately"). Her disapproval rating of 26% is also up slightly (3 points) from September (8% "strongly", 18% "moderately").
- James' approval rating is higher with women (66% vs. 52% men), union residents (66% vs. 56% non-union) and lower/middle income residents (66% lower, 64% middle vs. 52% higher).
Campbell (48%) Narrowly Leads James (43%) As Best Premier
Carole James may have the better approval rating, but Gordon Campbell is a narrow favourite as the party leader who would make the better Premier of British Columbia. Forty-eight percent of British Columbians think Campbell would make the better Premier, compared to 43% for James. The remaining 9% are undecided.
Differences across population segments include the following:
- Campbell leads by 11 points in the Lower Mainland (52% Campbell vs. 41% James), while James leads by 5 points in the rest of BC (47% James vs. 42% Campbell).
- Campbell leads by 21 points among men (57% Campbell vs. 36% James), while James leads by 11 points among women (50% James vs. 39% Campbell).
- James leads by 15 points among union households (52% James vs. 37% Campbell), while Campbell leads by 14 points among non-union households (53% Campbell vs. 39% James).
- Campbell leads by 19 points among older residents (55% Campbell vs. 36% James), but trails by 6 points among younger residents (43% Campbell vs. 49% James). The two leaders are effectively tied among the 35 to 54 year old age group (45% Campbell vs. 47% James).
- Campbell leads by 28 points among higher income households (60% Campbell vs. 32% James), but trails by 6 points among middle income households (43% Campbell vs. 49% James) and 17 points among lower income households (37% Campbell vs. 54% James).
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