Majority of Canadians (60%) Say It’s Time for Another Federal Party to Take Over as Trudeau Liberals Continue Slide

Federal Tories (38%) Increase Lead to 7-Points over Liberals (31%, -2); Singh Controversy Doesn’t Hurt NDP (23%, +2)

The author(s)
  • Darrell Bricker Global CEO, Public Affairs
Get in touch

Toronto, Ontario, March 26, 2018 — Discontent with the federal Liberals is on the rise as a majority say it’s time to replace the Trudeau government: a new Ipsos survey for Global News reveals that six in ten Canadians (60%) think it’s time for another federal party to take over. Conversely, only four in ten (40%) feel that the Trudeau government has done a good job and deserves re-election. The appetite for change extends to a majority in most regions of the country: 73% of Albertans, 73% of those in Saskatchewan and Manitoba, 61% of Ontarians, 58% of Quebecers, and 56% of British Columbians say it’s time for another party to take the reins. Only in Atlantic Canada is a majority (58%) still willing to give the Trudeau government a second chance, with only 42% saying the government should be replaced.

This desire for change at the Federal level is apparent in the national popular vote: if an election were held tomorrow, the Liberals would receive 31% of the national popular decided vote (down 2 points since early March), while the Conservatives would receive 38% of the vote (unchanged) and would win the election. The NDP would receive 23% support (up 2 points), suggesting that the controversy around leader Jagmeet Singh and his loyalties have not had an adverse impact on his party’s support. In fact, the NDP has benefited from the Liberal decline. The Bloc Québécois would receive 3% nationally, unchanged (15% support within Quebec, up 2 points). Other parties, including the Green Party, would receive 6% of the vote (up 1 point). Two in ten are either unsure (17%) of who they would vote for or wouldn’t vote (5%).

While voter intent varies significantly from one region to the next, the Conservatives have a very large lead in Canada’s most populous province:
• In Ontario, the Conservatives are firmly in the lead with 42% of the decided vote. The Liberals (26%) are a point behind the NDP (27%), while 5% say they would vote for some other party. It’s clear that the Liberal brand in Ontario is tarnished, both at the federal and provincial levels.
• In Quebec, the Liberals continue to have a firm grip, with 40% of the decided vote. The Tories are at 22%, while the NDP (18%) are just ahead of the Bloc Québécois (15%), and 5% would vote for another party;
• In British Columbia, the Conservative Party (35%) is 5 points ahead of the Liberals (30%), with one in four (26%) saying they’d vote for the NDP and 9% for another party;
• In Alberta, more than half (56%) would vote Tory, leaving 21% who would cast their vote for the Grits, 19% for the NDP, and 4% for some other party;
• In Saskatchewan and Manitoba, just over half (52%) would vote Conservative. The Liberals (28%) are in second place, and the NDP is in third (13%), leaving 6% who would vote for another party;
• In Atlantic Canada, nearly half (47%) say they’d vote Liberal, while one in four would opt for the Tories (26%) and two in ten (22%) for the NDP, leaving 6% who would choose some other party.

The Trudeau Liberals have made a point of attempting to court voters of certain demographics, including women, millennials, and those in the middle class. A closer look at the vote split among these key demographic groups suggests that some of the Liberals' core constituencies are beginning to look another way:
• Among women, the Conservatives (35%) have a five-point lead over the Liberals (30%), while the NDP (26%) are not far behind.
• Among men, the Conservatives (41%) have a ten-point lead over the Liberals (31%), while the NDP (19%) trails considerably.
• Among Millennials aged 18-34, the Liberals (33%) have only a slight lead over the NDP (31%), both of which are ahead of the Conservatives (24%).
• Among Gen Xers aged 35-54, the Conservatives (38%) have a sizeable lead over the Liberals (29%) and the NDP (24%).
• Among Boomers aged 55+, the Conservatives (47%) by far are the preferred party, ahead of the Liberals (30%) and NDP (16%).
Regardless of household income level, the Conservatives lead within each income group, and their lead increases with income:
o Less than $40K income: Conservatives 35% vs. Liberals 32% vs. NDP 23%
o $40K to <$60K income: Conservatives 33% vs. Liberals 27% vs. NDP 26%
o $60K to <$100K income: Conservatives 41% vs. Liberals 26% vs. NDP 26%
o $100K+ income: Conservatives 48% vs. Liberals 34% vs. NDP 14%

Roughly one month on from the federal budget and Trudeau’s highly-publicized state visit to India, the Liberal government has made several attempts to recapture positive headlines, including the announcement that Canada will be joining a UN peacekeeping mission in Mali, but they have had little luck in reversing the downward trend. In line with the fall in Liberal vote support, the federal government’s approval rating has also taken a hit. Four in ten (44%) now approve (7% strongly/37% somewhat) of the Trudeau government’s performance, down 2 points from early March and down 7 points since December. This leaves more than half (56%) who disapprove (27% strongly/29% somewhat), up 2 points since earlier this month.

Since the start of January, the proportion of Canadians who believe that things in Canada are on the right track has dropped by 8 points to 49%. Conversely, the proportion of Canadians who say that things are going in the wrong direction is up by 8 points since January, and now rests at 51%. Economic sentiment has also deteriorated: only 61% of Canadians say that the economy is in good shape, down 5 points since last month.

The current public mood is perhaps best described as one of growing disappointment: a majority of Canadians (56%) say the Trudeau government has fallen short of their expectations (up 2 points since December), peaking at 70% in Alberta, followed by Saskatchewan and Manitoba (66%), Ontario (58%), British Columbia (58%), Quebec (46%) and Atlantic Canada (46%). About four in ten (39%) say it has met their expectations (down 3 points), while just 5% (up 2 points) say the Trudeau government has exceeded their expectations.


About the Study

These are some of the findings of an Ipsos poll conducted between March 21 and 23, 2018, on behalf of Global News. For this survey, a sample of 1,003 Canadians aged 18+ was interviewed online via the Ipsos I-Say panel and non-panel sources. Quota sampling 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 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
+1 416 324 2001
[email protected]


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 fourth 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 €1,782.7 million in 2016.

The author(s)
  • Darrell Bricker Global CEO, Public Affairs