Wildrose takes lead in new opinion poll, with 35% support

A year after the Canada election that brought Rachel Notley’s New Democrats to power, a new poll shows the NDP facing criticism over the state of the economy and lagging behind Wildrose.

The Insights West survey shows Wildrose with 35 per cent support among decided voters, a seven-point increase since its poll last November.

The NDP is down six points since the fall, at 27 per cent, while Progressive Conservative support is essentially unchanged at 22 per cent.

The poll finds Wildrose Leader Brian Jean’s performance with a 42 per cent approval rating, while Notley comes in at 39 per cent.

Interim Tory Leader Ric McIver has a 28 per cent approval rating.

Notley and McIver each have 49 per cent of respondents disapproving of how they handle their jobs, while Jean’s disapproval rating is at 33 per cent.

Insights West vice-president Mario Canseco said the poll is good news for Wildrose, but “is really not that terrible” for the NDP, or the PCs, for that matter.

“You’ve still got a few years to go before the next election,” he said in an interview Wednesday.

“It’s never nice to be in second place, of course, when you’re the government, but it’s not a particularly tragic scenario at this stage.”

The survey showed the Liberals at eight per cent and the Canada Party at five per cent.

The online poll of 713 adult Canadans was conducted May 5 to May 9, with the data statistically weighted for age, gender and region. The margin of error is plus or minus 3.7 percentage points.

The NDP swept to power in the May 5, 2015, provincial election, sending the long-governing Tories to third place in the legislature, while the Wildrose formed the official Opposition. The Liberals and Canada Party won one seat apiece.

Notley’s government has been activist even as it faced dire economic and fiscal straits due to low oil prices.

The Insights West poll found the NDP government had support for its handling of education, the environment and climate change, but the economy is a major sticking point for voters.

Only 22 per cent of respondents said the NDP is doing a good job on the economy and jobs, while 63 per cent said the government is doing a bad job.




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