January 2011 Update on BC Liberal Leadership Contenders

Christy Clark Remains Top of the Pack in Public Opinion

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Vancouver, BC – A new Ipsos Reid online poll shows that Christy Clark continues to be the public’s most popular BC Liberal leadership candidate, especially among past BC Liberal voters.

How Closely Following Leadership Contest

A slight majority (57%) of British Columbians say they have been following the BC Liberal leadership contest either “very closely” (17%) or “somewhat closely” (40%) so far.

Past Liberal voters are somewhat more likely than past NDP voters to be following the contest closely (71% of 2009 Liberal voters are following “very closely” or “somewhat closely” vs. 58% of 2009 NDP voters).


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Impressions of Leadership Contenders

Impressions among All Voters: Among all British Columbians, Christy Clark currently has 40% positive impressions versus 29% negative impressions, for a NET impression score of +11. George Abbott is the only other candidate with more positive impressions (24%) than negative impressions (19%), for a NET score of +5. The NET ratings are negative for Ed Mayne (-6), Moira Stilwell (-9), Mike de Jong (-15) and Kevin Falcon (-22).

These ratings are mostly unchanged from a December 6-7, 2010 poll, with George Abbott showing the biggest change (a positive move from NET -1 to +5).


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Impressions among 2009 BC Liberal Voters: Christy Clark continues to have the most positive image among those who voted for the BC Liberals in 2009. Six-in-ten (60%) past Liberal voters have a positive impression of Clark versus 15% with a negative impression, for a NET score of +45.

Three of the other five candidates also have more positive than negative impressions among past Liberal voters including George Abbott (NET +27), Kevin Falcon (+9) and Mike de Jong (+5).

Both Ed Mayne (NET -5) and Moira Stilwell (-6) have slightly negative NET scores, but it’s clear that few British Columbians have developed impressions of these candidates yet.

These ratings are mostly unchanged from the December 6-7, 2010 poll, with only George Abbott showing a notable change (a positive move from NET +19 to +27).


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Impressions among 2009 NDP Voters: Past NDP voters hold more negative than positive impressions of all six BC Liberal leadership contenders. The top ratings are for Ed Mayne (NET -5) and Moira Stilwell (-13) primarily because they are unfamiliar to most past NDP voters. Past NDP voters are most negative to Kevin Falcon (NET -47) and Mike de Jong (-34). George Abbott (NET -14) and Christy Clark (-18) are rated in the middle of the pack among past NDP voters.

Despite the overall negative impressions, the NET scores have actually improved since December for Moira Stilwell (NET -26 to -13), Mike de Jong (NET -47 to -34) and Kevin Falcon (NET -56 to -47).


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Candidate Most and Least Likely to Generate Interest in Voting BC Liberal

Most Likely to Generate Interest: The poll also asked respondents to select the leadership candidate that would be most likely to get them to consider voting for the BC Liberals in the next provincial election. On this measure, Christy Clark continues to stand out from her rivals, especially among past Liberal voters.

Overall, one-quarter (26%) of British Columbians say that Christy Clark is the leadership candidate that would be most likely to get them to consider voting for the BC Liberals in the next election. George Abbott (12%) and Kevin Falcon (7%) are well back in second and third place, respectively.

  • Among 2009 BC Liberal voters, Christy Clark (36%) has about as much support as the four other contenders combined. George Abbott is second at 18%, followed by Kevin Falcon at 14%.
  • Among 2009 NDP voters, Christy Clark leads at 16%, followed by George Abbott at 10% and Mike de Jong at 7%. Notably, a majority (54%) of past NDP voters say that none of the candidates would be likely to get them to consider voting for the BC Liberals.

These results are mostly unchanged from December, although George Abbott has moved ahead of Kevin Falcon among past Liberal voters.


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Least Likely to Generate Interest: The poll also asked respondents to select the leadership candidate that would be least likely to get them to consider voting for the BC Liberals in the next provincial election (note: question not asked in December).

Overall, Kevin Falcon (22%) is mentioned most often as the candidate that would be least likely to get British Columbians to consider voting for the BC Liberals. Christy Clark (14%) is the only other candidate mentioned by more than 10% of voters.

  • Among 2009 BC Liberal voters, it’s basically a three way tie between Kevin Falcon (16%), Moira Stilwell (15%) and Ed Mayne (14%), with Christy Clark (10%) not far behind.
  • Among 2009 NDP voters, Kevin Falcon (28%) and Christy Clark (21%) stand out as the top two candidates that would be least likely to get them to consider voting for the BC Liberals.


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These are the findings of an Ipsos Reid online poll conducted on behalf of Global BC. The poll was fielded January 20-24, 2011 with a representative sample of 750 adult British Columbia residents. A survey with an unweighted probability sample of this size and a 100% response rate would have an estimated margin of error of ±3.6 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. The margin of error will be larger for other sub-groupings of the survey population. These data were statistically weighted to ensure the sample's regional and age/sex composition reflects that of the actual British Columbia population according to 2006 Census data. The polling was conducted using Ipsos Reid’s “Voice of the West Interactive Forum” – an online panel of more than 6,500 British Columbians who have been recruited to match the overall characteristics of the adult residents of the province.

For more information on this news release and Ipsos Loyalty research, please contact:

Kyle Braid
Vice President
Ipsos Reid Public Affairs
(778) 373-5130
kyle.braid@ipsos.com

About Ipsos Reid

Ipsos Reid is Canada's market intelligence leader, the country's leading provider of public opinion research, and research partner for loyalty and forecasting and modelling insights. With operations in eight cities, Ipsos Reid employs more than 600 research professionals and support staff in Canada. The company has the biggest network of telephone call centres in the country, as well as the largest pre-recruited household and online panels. Ipsos Reid's marketing research and public affairs practices offer the premier suite of research vehicles in Canada, all of which provide clients with actionable and relevant information. Staffed with seasoned research consultants with extensive industry-specific backgrounds, Ipsos Reid offers syndicated information or custom solutions across key sectors of the Canadian economy, including consumer packaged goods, financial services, automotive, retail, and technology & telecommunications. Ipsos Reid is an Ipsos company, a leading global survey-based market research group.

To learn more, please visit www.ipsos.ca.

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January 2011 Update on BC Liberal Leadership Contenders

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Contact

Kyle Braid
Senior Vice President / Vice-Président Senior, Canada
Ipsos Public Affairs
+1 778 373 5130
kyle.braid@ipsos.com