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Prime Minister Martin makes 'gutsy' choice for Governor General
  Aug 18, 2005

A random sample of 1,012 Canadians between August 10 and 19, 2005. This survey features a margin of error of 4.35%, 19 times out of 20 with a confidence level of 96%. Compare Liberal (Decima) Poll during approximately the same time period: v 79% of Canadians (Decima) approve of the selection- (ROBBINS 51%) v 86% of those who intend to vote Bloc (Decima) approve of selection (50%)

Question #1
If an election were held two weeks from today for which federal political party would you caste your vote?
Federal Liberals    36 %
Federal New Democrats    15 %
Bloc Quebecois    12 %
Federal Green Party    05 %
Federal Conservative Party    30 %
Question #2
In your opinion is recent Governor General nominee Michaelle Jean a good choice for the position?
Yes    42 %
No    41 %
Undecided    17 %
Question #3
Have you at any time watched a television news show called the Passionate Eye on CBC?
Yes    34 %
No    53 %
Maybe/Unsure    13 %
Commentary
Governor General nominee is supported by (50%) of decided voters of this cross Canada survey of federal voters, while nearly one out of five are as yet undecided. One-third of voters indicate that they have seen the “Passionate Eye” on CBC. Of these, (74%) are of the opinion that Michaelle Jean is a good choice for Governor General.
Alberta (26%) and Saskatchewan (28%) are least supportive of Ms. Jean’s nomination, while Quebec (48%), the Maritime Provinces (43%) and Manitoba and Ontario (44%) are the most supportive. Support for Ms. Jean (after factoring “Undecided’s” in Question’s #1 and #2) virtually mirror federal Liberal support across the country from province to province with the exception of Manitoba and Quebec, where Ms. Jean’s nomination has more support than the Liberal Party of Canada does. However, according to ROBBINS, Liberal support has increased in Quebec over this period to (33%), from earlier ROBBINS polls that reflect support in the low 20 percentile, however it is not known what, if any, correlation there is between Ms. Jean’s nomination and increased Liberal support in that province. The Liberal Party maintains (44%) support in Ontario and the Maritimes, with increased support in BC (32%).
Insight-Although much has been made of Michaelle Jean’s nomination to the position of Governor General in Canada, including some questions about her past relationship to Quebec nationalists, this poll clearly proves that as a political nomination Ms. Jean is an absolutely brilliant ‘political’ stroke by Prime Minister Paul Martin.
Supporters of all federal parties but most particularly the Bloc Quebecois, New Democrats, and Greens are also supporters of Ms. Jean’s nomination. Ms. Jean’s nomination may not make westerners happy, but Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, and the Maritimes are pleased (or at least not displeased) with her selection, and British Columbians are not far behind these provinces in their support of the nomination.
Ms. Jean’s selection has created a storm of controversy that may linger until she becomes Governor General, but this poll reveals that from a political standpoint she is a good choice. What is important to consider is that the Passionate Eye where Ms. Jean was employed by the CBC, may be one of the best-produced shows on television anywhere, she is of French and Haitian descent, is extremely intelligent, attractive, and very interesting. She provides a more youthful and interesting contrast to her predecessor in that role. Although the role of Governor General is considered mostly ceremonial that does not make this nomination any less important from a political perspective as Michaelle Jean is just what the doctor ordered to begin to repair an ever increasingly fractured Canadian Confederate composition, and federal Liberal fortunes particularly in Quebec as well

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