BC Liberals Take Back the Right

BC Liberals (35%, up 3) Pick Up More Support from BC Conservatives (9%, down 3), But NDP Still Well Ahead (48%, down 1)
NDP Leads Despite Strong Fundamentals that Should Favour Incumbent BC Liberals

Tuesday, December 04, 2012

Vancouver, BC – A new Ipsos Reid poll shows a continued decline in support for John Cummins and his BC Conservatives. The BC Conservative downfall has benefited BC Liberal voter support, but the NDP remains well out front with the support of nearly half of the province’s decided voters.


The NDP continues to lead in terms of voter support in BC. Nearly half of decided voters (48%) say they support the NDP, which is basically unchanged from 49% in September.

Meanwhile, the BC Liberals continue to recapture support lost to the BC Conservatives. The BC Liberals now have the support of 35% of decided voters, up 3 points from 32% in September. The Liberal gain matches a 3 point decline for the BC Conservatives who see their support fall from 12% in September to 9% today. Since June, the BC Liberals are up 6 points (from 29% to 35%), all at the expense of BC Conservatives who are down 7 points (from 16% to 9%).

Support for the Green Party stands at 7%, which is up 1 point from 6% in September.

These results exclude the 20% of British Columbians who are undecided or express no preference.

  • Region: The NDP continues to lead in all regions. They have a 13 point lead in Metro Vancouver (49% NDP vs. 36% BC Lib), a 14 point lead on Vancouver Island (48% NDP vs. 34% BC Lib) and a 12 point lead in the Southern Interior/North (46% NDP vs. 34% BC Lib).
  • Gender: The NDP has a 29 point lead among women (56% NDP vs. 27% BC Lib), but trail the BC Liberals by a statistically insignificant 2 points among men (43% BC Lib vs. 41% NDP).

Provincial Mood

The overall provincial mood should favour the incumbent BC Liberals. Nearly six-in-ten (59%) British Columbians think the BC economy is in ‘very good’ or ‘good’ shape, compared to nearly four-in-ten (38%) who think the BC economy is in ‘poor’ or ‘very poor’ shape. To put this number in context, only 25% of British Columbians thought the BC economy was in good shape in the spring of 2001 when the BC Liberals were first elected and the incumbent NDP were reduced to two seats.

And thinking of things more broadly than just the economy, slightly more British Columbians think things are headed more in the right direction (46%) than in the wrong direction (42%) in the province right now.

Leader Approval Ratings

The approval rating of Christy Clark as Premier is basically unchanged since September. Currently 34% (up 1 point) of British Columbians say they approve of her performance (5% ‘strongly’), while nearly six-in-ten (59%, down 1) disapprove of her performance (35% ‘strongly’). Less than one-in-ten (6%, down 1 point) are undecided about her performance as Premier. Adrian Dix’s approval numbers as NDP and Opposition leader are also basically unchanged since September. Currently 53% (up 2 points) of British Columbians say they approve of his performance (16% ‘strongly’), while 34% (unchanged) disapprove (17% ‘strongly’). Thirteen percent (down 2 points) are undecided.

The numbers have shifted much more negative for John Cummins as BC Conservative leader. His approval rating is down 10 points since September (from 23% to 13%), while his disapproval rating is up 11 points (from 40% to 51%). Nearly four-in-ten (36%, down 1 point) say they are undecided about John Cummins.

A slight majority of residents (55%, down 6 points) say they have no impression of the job Jane Sterk is doing as Green Party leader. Currently 24% (up 3 points) say they approve of her performance while 22% (up 4 points) disapprove.

Best Premier

Adrian Dix continues to move out front as the leader who voters think would make the best Premier of British Columbia. Dix is selected by 39% (up 4 points) of British Columbians, placing him 16 points ahead of Christy Clark (23%, up 1 point). John Cummins is a distant third choice at 7% (down 2 points), followed by Jane Sterk at just 3% (unchanged). Nearly three-in-ten (27%, down 4 points) British Columbians are unsure which of the four party leaders would make the best Premier.

These are the findings of an Ipsos Reid poll of 1,000 adult British Columbians conducted online using Ipsos Reid’s national online household panel between November 26 and 30, 2012. A survey with an unweighted probability sample of this size and a 100% response rate would have an estimated margin of error of ±3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. The margin of error would be larger within regions and 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 BC population according to 2011 Census data.

For more information on this news release, please contact:

Kyle Braid
Vice President
Ipsos Reid Public Affairs

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.

About Ipsos

Ipsos is an independent market research company controlled and managed by research professionals. Founded in France in 1975, Ipsos has grown into a worldwide research group with a strong presence in all key markets. In October 2011 Ipsos completed the acquisition of Synovate. The combination forms the world’s third largest market research company.

With offices in 84 countries, Ipsos delivers insightful expertise across six research specializations: advertising, customer loyalty, marketing, media, public affairs research, and survey management.

Ipsos researchers assess market potential and interpret market trends. They develop and build brands. They help clients build long-term relationships with their customers. They test advertising and study audience responses to various media and they measure public opinion around the globe.

Ipsos has been listed on the Paris Stock Exchange since 1999 and generated global revenues of €1,363 billion (1.897 billion USD) in 2011.

Visit www.ipsos-na.com to learn more about Ipsos’ offerings and capabilities.

BC Liberals Take Back the Right


Kyle Braid
Senior Vice President / Vice-Président Senior, Canada
Ipsos Public Affairs
+1 778 373 5130