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RSR ROBBINS Research - British Columbia Politics January 26, 2013
  Jan 26, 2013

Question #1
Which BC political party do you currently support? (Statistically adjusted)
BC New Democrats    44.53 %
BC Liberals    31.55 %
BC Conservatives    9.61 %
BC Greens    9.57 %
Independent candidate - other party    4.76 %
Undecided    6 %
Question #2
From the following two response choices which group would you assign more credibility on aboriginal issues (to)?
Aboriginals    35 %
Stephen Harper    31 %
Neither    32 %
Undecided    2 %
Question #3
Are Global Warming – Climate Change and environmental issues of serious importance to you?
Yes    53 %
No    23 %
Question #4
Which political leader do you trust more?
Adrian Dix    38 %
Christy Clark    25 %
I am not fully aware of Adrian Dix or Christy Clark    23.5 %
I don’t trust either Adrian Dix or Christy Clark at all    14.5 %
Question #1- The BC New Democrats retain a wide lead over the BC Liberals as we head to the final turn --and the provincial election race finish line scheduled the first week of May 2013. After factoring all information including Undecided – the BC New Democrats have increased statistical support (0.22%) while the BC Liberals have lost (2.71%) support from the beginning of this new year. The BC Conservatives are down (1%), while the BC Greens are up (.45%). This study included an additional 2 response choices (from the January ROBBINS study – “Independent candidate and Other Party” which attracted just less than (5%) of all voter support in this ROBBINS early ballot tally.
The marginal drop in support in this survey for the BC Liberals and BC Conservatives is diffuse throughout all regions of the province but most noteworthy in Vancouver and Suburban Vancouver based on the January survey (baseline).
The undecided in this survey dropped to (6%) from (8%) in our ‘TRUMPIAN’ ROBBINS survey (it was huge) of one month ago. Support for the BC Liberals and BC Conservatives combined is down (3%) from the January ROBBINS survey of 4,687 {2009} voters. This decline may be explained by the introduction of an additional response choice (Independent/Other Party). If this is true, then the inference is that Independent and fringe parties are more likely to take votes away from both the BC Liberals and BC Conservatives than from the BC New Democrats and BC Greens.
Another explanation could simply be the sample size differential. The January survey has a margin of error of (1.5%) while the margin of error in this survey is (3.5%). However the margin of error difference doesn’t explain why the BC New Democrats and BC Greens have held their support even with the introduction of an additional response choice.
Our current theory is that BC Liberals and BC Conservatives are seen as associated with Stephen Harper and his federal Conservative party or alternatively the “C”onservative brand, the three of them a hodge podge of growing unpopularity in the Province of British Columbia. Many BC Conservatives cannot stay with BC Liberals as they are not comfortable with the conduct of the government over the last few years and are not the least bit enamored with Christy Clark (as a serious leader), who they see as “a liberal pretending to be a conservative” in her role as leader of the BC Liberal party.
Many centre right voters aren’t sure who Christy Clark is (as a leader) or alternatively, aren’t sure if SHE knows who she is. The (fair) commentary from media when John Cummins and BC Conservatives were at (20%) was that the party could not maintain this level support as election time neared and there is now evidence from ROBBINS and others over the past weeks that this is a fact.
I would speculate based on how entrenched the current support for BC Conservatives is, that Christy Clark’s BC Liberals won’t be able to budge it, and worse for them, that John Cummins believes he can do better than these numbers – a recipe for absolute disaster for the BC Liberals already facing a 27 seat deficit against the BC New Democrats based on these survey numbers. With Rich Coleman flailing around over sale of gambling in Surrey and Langley, and looking like a politician with a fixated agenda – his safe looking seat might not be so solid anymore. If Coleman loses, and Christy loses who is new power broker on the centre right in British Columbia after the BC NDP win in May?
Stephen Harper’s Conservatives are losing support in BC owing to their perceived proximity to the Enbridge deal and big oil generally (Calgary, Alberta) and other matters including closing the Kitsilano coast guard station, complicity with HST dishonesty, and many other ‘deaths by numerous cuts’, a general sense that they present a ‘negative image’ of government including ‘the reduction of amortization of periods for home mortgages’, the net effect being that British Columbians believe that Harper et al ‘need to take their meds’ because they are ‘depressing’ the country.
No people like living under a state of fear no matter the degree of it.
Anecdotally from discussions as the federal Liberal leadership debate in Vancouver BC and meet and greet afterward, it is clear that many undecided voters who support Liberals federally; cannot bring themselves to support Christy Clark’s BC Liberals, and are looking at the door to the BC New Democrat ‘tent’. This anecdotal message was particularly alert among women. If there is any merit to this speculation, then where would remaining federal Liberals who haven’t already left to the BC NDP go at voting time? Would (women) federal Liberal supporters simply stay home or might they push the BC Green vote higher?
BC Green Leader Jane Sterk has much going for her heading into the next provincial election she must convert opportunity to double digits to keep the party viable, and to help increase capacity for Elizabeth May (federal Green leader) who although close friends with federal Liberal candidate Justin Trudeau could be vulnerable to Greens moving to the federal Liberals as a (a) a viable response to Stephen Harper; (b) in the best interests of the environmental movement (c) as a natural solution to the vote split issue and proponent of overhauling the current archaic (dissatisfying) method of electing candidates. Ms. May might strongly consider moving to the federal Liberal party after the provincial election to help the country in return for her being in charge of the environment – ‘get on with it’). The federal Liberal party’s 9 leadership hopefuls are very good and in my estimation superior to the Conservative or NDP top nine by noteworthy degree. Ms. May knows just who to consult on this matter – See- what happens and take it from there. The system needs to change – but the people who make a good living advocating for this – need to practice what they preach.
Life is full of sacrifices big and small - . Canadian politics is rather boring – given the federal Liberal leadership vote is wide open to Canadians, wouldn’t it be interesting to see Elizabeth May as the Green leader run for the leader of the federal Liberal Party? Red, Black and Green – the colours of the new modern era?
Centre left parties continue to dominate the political spectrum in British Columbia with the combined total for the BC New Democrats and BC Greens at (54%), and the BC Liberals and BC Conservatives at (41%).
Question #2-Of the two featured ‘sides’ in the recent well publicized and on going political relationship between aboriginal parties and Stephen Harper Prime Minister of Canada, aboriginals have more credibility ‘on the subject of aboriginals’ by a ratio of (58.5%) to (41.5%). One third of BC voters do not see either as having credibility. This outcome is well short of excellent for both aboriginal people in Canada and Stephen Harper on behalf of the government of Canada.
However, there is a silver lining to the results for each. Aboriginals may not have credibility about with a majority of non aboriginals as the survey suggests, but they certainly have a constituency of support equal to the support of each of the main federal political parties, and only less than the BC New Democrats, likely to be more supportive of aboriginal positions than either the current BC government or federal Conservatives.
Stephen Harper probably doesn’t expect higher numbers on the aboriginal file so these numbers in BC where his party popularity has been slipping in support are quite satisfactory. Many conservative supporters are not sympathetic to high incomes and salaries paid to aboriginal Chiefs and leaders while some of their people continue to starve. This well publicized high income for a few aboriginals, and (often) inordinately defensive spokespeople representing aboriginals in media – combined with a growing number of middle class Canadians who are sick of high earning government officials at all levels who appear to voters to jump from one distraction to another and solve little, and who are not having an easy time of it themselves are clearly reflected in the high number of voters who support neither Aboriginals nor Stephen Harper.
Question #3-Global Warming, Climate Change and the environment have ‘arrived’ for certain in British Columbia as ‘serious and important issues’ among BC voters. The Enbridge and Kinder Morgan pipeline issues are acting as anchors to the foundation of majority support for dealing with perceived problems with the environment. Many British Columbians who might otherwise be more conciliatory about the proposed pipelines and pipeline expansion are sticking to the guns and the defense against these big oil efforts based on the premise that “It’s a shitty deal for BC”.
Global Warming and Climate Change issues have attracted support above 50 per cent in the past in ROBBINS polls and surveys as well as other noteworthy polls from advertising dependent media corporations, but this may be the first time that the “No” (‘No they aren’t serious issues’) response has been this low with less than one in four British Columbians selecting this response. The issue(s) of Climate Change, Global Warming and the environment are of serious importance to many British Columbians –
This serious attitude among British Columbians regarding global warming, climate change and the environment appears (over the past five years), to have moved from the minds of many British Columbians (debate) to something more visceral. At the end of the day science will not defeat something that flows through a persons ‘belief’. The more entrenched the proponents of Enbridge and Kinder Morgan become with ‘science’ and ‘economics’ the more resistant voters in BC seem to become in their belief they should resist the expansion.
Most British Columbians acknowledge an enormous stake in their environment and cannot see how the pipeline will benefit them or more importantly benefit the maintenance of a sustainable environment. A number of the candidates for the federal Liberal leadership contest particularly those from back east do not seem to understand this. They should teach themselves sooner than later that BC is of paramount importance to any resurgence they want to make nationally after scoring under 20 per cent in this province in the last federal general election.
Question #4-Adrian Dix is more trustworthy than Christy Clark among BC voters by a score of 3/2, however nearly one in four British Columbians are (apparently) not ‘fully aware’ of either. I say (apparently) because question #1 on party brands suggests only (6%) undecided among 2009 voters. The mainstream media is advertising that Christy Clark is a great campaigner (during elections).
Following our ‘huge’ January sample survey of BC politics we guaranteed a BC NDP government in May 2013. The evidence in this ROBBINS survey reinforces that January 2013 prediction, and further suggests that based on these numbers the BC NDP would win government in May 2013 by 27 seats. The BC NDP have the advantage in terms of leader as well. Based on party to party and leader to leader comparisons Adrian Dix is a 60%-40% ‘winner’ over Christy Clark, while the BC New Democrats are 58-42% ‘winners’ over the BC Liberals. Christy Clark would need to attract (80%) of the (23.5%) of voters who are ‘not fully aware’ of either leader to match Adrian Dix and that isn’t likely to happen.
Oddly, there were a number of respondents who believe that Adrian Dix is the current premier (by anecdote).
Methodology: A ROBBINS survey of 1,023 respondents who voted in the 2009 general provincial election in the Province of British Columbia. This survey was conducted from January 19-24, 2013. This survey features a Margin of Error (M.O.E) of (3.06%) plus or minus 19 times out of 20 @ 95% confidence.

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