Canadians divided on preferred election result

Nearly half expect voters will return a Liberal minority

VANCOUVER –  Canadians are bearing witness to the roller coaster ride that has been the first weeks of the 44th federal election. A comfortable advantage for the incumbent Liberals has vanished, while the Conservative party picked up support driven by its leader’s surging momentum.

Regardless of how they vote, however, Canadians – at least at this stage in the campaign – say they largely expect an election outcome that mirrors the way government looked when the writs were dropped Aug. 15.

New data from the non-profit Angus Reid Institute finds half of Canadians (49%) saying they anticipate another Liberal minority government. Another one-in-nine (12%) say that they expect the Liberals to turn it around and win a majority. Just one-in-three (34%) expect a Conservative government in any form.

That’s not necessarily what Canadians want, however. Asked what form of government they would prefer if they could choose, the largest group – 42 per cent – would like to see the CPC take over from the Liberals, whether in majority (32%) or minority (10%) composition. Three-in-ten (31%) would like the Liberal Party to govern again, divided evenly between hoping for a majority or minority, while slightly fewer (27%) want Jagmeet Singh as prime minister, and the NDP as the government.

Just 52 per cent of current Liberal voters say they would like to see an LPC majority. Far more Conservative (81%) and NDP (63%) voters would like to see this from the party they plan to support.

A majority of residents in Alberta and Saskatchewan would like to see a Conservative majority. Nowhere else do a majority of voters agree on which party they would like to see govern.

More than four-in-five Liberal voters (84%) expect their party to win. Two-thirds of CPC voters (64%) say they believe their party will win, while just 14 per cent of NDP voters say this of the NDP.