One in Five (17%) Voters Say Protests at Liberal Campaign Events Will Affect Their Vote. Protests Most Galvanizing for Those Already Intending to Vote Liberal

Opposition to Pandemic Election Continues to Grow (68% +12 pts)

The author(s)

  • Darrell Bricker Global CEO, Public Affairs
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Toronto, ON, September 9, 2021 —While campaign protests against Liberal Party Leader Justin Trudeau have received widespread media coverage, a recent Ipsos poll for Global News has found only 17% of Canadians say the protests will impact how they vote. This view is strongest among those already voting Liberal (22%).

Whether Canadians should be going to the polls is increasingly controversial with 68% now agreeing we should not be having an election during the pandemic. This is a 12-point increase since the start of the campaign. Even a majority (62%, +9 pts) of Liberal voters believe we shouldn’t be holding an election during the pandemic.

Canadians Divided on Whether Protests are a Threat to Democracy

Canadians are divided on whether the recent protests against Justin Trudeau echo those witnessed on January 6th in Washington, DC: half of Canadians agree (50%) the people protesting at Justin Trudeau’s campaign events share the ideas of the people who stormed the capital building in Washington and their protests represent a serious threat to Canada’s democracy. The other half disagrees. Opinions tend to divide along party support lines with Liberal voters being most likely to agree. (70% Lib, 55% NDP, 52% Green, 51% BQ, 35% Cons, 9% PPC).

Protests Par for the Course for Half of Canadians

When asked about their attitudes toward the recent protests, just over half (55%) of Canadians agree protestors at campaign events are just a regular part of politics in Canada.  However, this leaves approximately half of Canadians who feel that protests are not a regular part of politics and who are uncomfortable with the recent displays at campaign stops.

While the protests may have left Canadians divided, only four and ten (40%) agree that re-electing the Trudeau Government is the best way for Canadians to stand up to dangerous and intolerant political forces in Canada. This sentiment again divides along party lines with 87% of Liberal voters agreeing that re-electing the Trudeau Government is the best way to stand up to dangerous and intolerant political forces, while only 12% of Conservative voters share this same view (40% Green, 37% BQ, 26% NDP, 0% PPC).

Generational Divide Evident

While Canadians are divided on whether the recent protests reflect an “Americanization” of Canadian politics or are business as usual, some divisions emerge when looking at opinions by generations. When it comes to the idea of heading to the polls, Boomers are significantly more likely to state we should not be having an election during a pandemic (82% vs. 71% Gen X, 56% Mill, 44% Gen Z).

When it comes to the recent protests, however, Gen Z is the most comfortable:

  • Three quarters of Gen Z agrees protestors at campaign events are just a regular part of politics in Canada (73% vs. 59% Mill, 55% Gen X, 47% Boomer)
  • A third say the protests against Justin Trudeau will impact how they vote (34% vs. 20% Mill, 15% Gen X, 10% Boomer)


About the Study

These are some of the findings of an Ipsos poll conducted between September 3rd and 6th , on behalf of Global News. For this survey, a sample of n = 1,500 Canadians aged 18+ was interviewed online, via the Ipsos I-Say panel and non-panel sources. Respondents earn a nominal incentive for their participation.  Quotas and weighting were 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 polls which include non-probability sampling is measured using a credibility interval. In this case, the poll is accurate to within ± 2.9 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, had all Canadians 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. Ipsos abides by the disclosure standards established by the CRIC, found here:

© 2021, Ipsos Limited Partnership

This polling release and the data contained in it are the sole and exclusive property of Ipsos. They are NOT designed to support any election outcome or prediction model and no license to use the polling release or the data is either granted or implied by their publication. Ipsos does not endorse, and has no responsibility for the accuracy of, the result of any predictive model that incorporates this polling data. Furthermore, any use of this information to produce polling aggregations or election models without Ipsos’ written permission will be considered a violation of our intellectual property, and Ipsos reserves the right to take appropriate legal action. Detailed tabular data tables can be found here:

 For more information on this news release, please contact:

Darrell Bricker
CEO, Ipsos Global Public Affairs
+1 416 324 2001
[email protected]


About Ipsos

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The author(s)

  • Darrell Bricker Global CEO, Public Affairs