Harper trusted over Ignatieff on economy - Macleans.ca

Harper trusted over Ignatieff on economy

But Canadians are split on just what to do


Less than half of Canadians trust Stephen Harper to run the economy, but the prime minister still far outstrips his main rival, Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff, when it comes to his approval rating as an economic manager. A new poll by Angus Reid finds that 41 per cent trust Harper to help the economy, compared to just just 23 per cent who feel confident about Ignatieff’s ability to handle the file. What dollars-and-cents issues are Canadians most worried about? The poll found 23 per cent said taxes and 22 per cent cited unemployment. Poverty is the biggest worry for 17 per cent, while 12 per cent say the deficit and 10 per cent inflation. On specific government priorities, a mere five per cent said infrastructure spending should be Ottawa’s top priority, and only 1 per cent suggesting defence spending as the top federal concern.

Toronto Star

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Harper trusted over Ignatieff on economy

  1. We know all too well in Canada that putting liberals in charge of money is like putting drunks in charge of liquor stores. America's Affirmative Action President is busy teaching Americans the same lesson.

    The liberals are now paying for their billion dollar boondoggles, their fountains in rivers, their shady golf course deals, and their arrogant corrupt french masters. Looks good on 'em.

    • Gosh, you are blind to the $1 billion spent on security for a 2-day meeting, the billions spent to build skating rinks and beautify Clement's riding …guess, you don't mind billions wasted when it is done by CONs. Just being partisan is your excuse.

      • Er…the people that made that security necessary were pretty much all leftie flakes, chickie. Generally when conservatives demonstrate or protest, they don't burn squad cars or throw rocks and molotovs at the police.

        • I think the anarchists that were burning things would be insulted at being called "lefties".

          Anarchists want anarchy, they don't care about political sides. They have no underlying philosophy aside from that, and are generally just angsty kids who haven't learned how the world works.

          Considering the issue at hand, was $1 billion needed for security? South Korea held the latest G20 summit, and I think they spent a fraction of that without any major issues. Perhaps a better question is, considering what little gets accomplished at these meetings, can they really justify having them twice a year? Probably once every two years would be adequate.

        • no.

      • Yeah we should have let the leaders stay at the Comfort Inn and we should have allowed the crazies to destroy the city and overrun the convention centre. Talk about partisan. You take the cake. You need to grow up. This is Canada and we hosted two back to back summits which required spending. I am not sure all the expenses were justified but the fact that people like you use the costs as a partisan attack requires a rebuttal.

    • Now we will get the usual guff, but the cons are spending money.Remember when Layton and Iggy went on and on about stimulus?? gawd.I dont think iggy stand a chance at being PM, ever! this makes my year!

    • Well said Jim. The conservative bloc (that is small-c) will not budge back to liberalism, now nor ever. Just a matter of time before the liberal Canadians see what's really going on here.

    • I'm sure you gave it a great deal of thought before coming up with your response hm ? . Not for you knee-jerk partisanship eh…lol

    • the Liberals mhave been caught with their pants down I agree even as a Liberal. However;The way Harper and his cronies are spending MY money for fake lakes, and other G20 EVENTS the fact that we know of the overrun on our finance's. for the start. The closure of the prison farms etc. What will we find out about the Reform Party after the election.

    • Do you not pay attention!

      The liberals left a fat surplus while the conservatives always leave huge debts. These are the facts yet you spew the opposite.

      Wake up!

      The Harper goverment is taking down our caring society, and putting all but the wealthy down.

      I am rich and know; I just have a conscience.

  2. are you kidding. The C.R.A.P. and their spending sprees are making the ad scam and all other Lib mistakes look like 5 and dime expenditures. And that is only in 1 year. Just wait.

    • I think using the term "C.R.A.P" pretty much exposes your credibility. Maybe that's why you can't name even one major Conservative scandal.

    • Keep dreaming buddy. Nobody stole money from the Canadian taxpayers. Nothing compares to adscam and you know it. They have tried desperately to attach scandal to the government and Harper and his government appear to be made of teflon because Canadians, other than lefties, aren't listening.

  3. As a former Lib supporter and one that would never support the C.R.A.P. I have to agree that the Harp would do a better job than Iggy. The Libs are quite happy in letting the C.R.A.P. continue on its road to destruction just like the former Con party. Judging by their past and short performance, that destruction is inevitable.

    • John, i was all so young and dumb and voted liberal, but we all grow up at some point and realize how stupid the ideas we had when we're young and know no better.The liberals are liers and thieves,they sever no one but the liberal party.The Conservatives may not be everything they've promised but i think most Canadians can admit they aren't stealing from us which puts them in a place all there own,( Jack,his wife and the Dips show they can spend our money quite freely,just think of what they'd do if they ever got their hands on the purse.Point being John, Conservatives are all we have right now and unless the liberals were to clean house and start over with 100% new blood, the Conservatives are all we'll have for a long time to come.

  4. Can you name even one country that hasn't amounted a deficit in the wake of the most significant financial meltdown in recent history? Heck, I'm wondering what kind of a deficit we would have had if the coalition somehow managed to get power. Given that context, isn't Canada's deficit very small indeed?

    • You are right but don't try to talk sense to a Liberal or a Dipper.

    • With one giant tax cut for the countries riches people Harper made the budget surplus vanish before the melt down. As in the USA Neo-Cons talk restraint for everyone but the top 10%!

  5. The government doesn't run the economy. They can shape and manipulate it, but it is the CCCE that runs most of the economy as well as the majority of government decisions relating to the economy.

    Conservative or Liberal doesn't matter that much.

    • You got that right. Governments don't run anything anymore. Corporations do. Why do you think the lines are blurred between ideologies and that there's no real difference anymore between the left, the right and every other "ideological" agenda? Because they don't matter anymore. There's only one ideology left: profit, and the corporations are pulling the strings.

      “There's class warfare, all right, but it's my class, the rich class, that's making war, and we're winning.”
      Warren Buffet
      New York Times, 2006 Nov. 26, Ben Stein, "In Class Warfare, Guess Which Class Is Winning" http://www.nytimes.com/2006/11/26/business/yourmo

  6. If Canadians think so, then they deserve Harper. I do hope Harper gets his opportunity to mess up the country, not that he has done enough in making a mockery of our democracy. Canadians don't seem to mind. So, maybe a lot more of Harper's Conservatism is necessary to wake them up.

    • Harper has used the powers that are given to ANY PM. Because the opposition are inept and ineffective is not his fault. Mockery of Democracy? It is that faux Canadian who was appointed leader and came back soley to be PM who is mocking democracy by pretending he is one of us. Many Canadians are not buying it. Once again you are exaggerating simply because the public is not buying what the opposition is offering.
      Just so you know. The opposition could put forward a vote of non confidence at any time and force an election. Even you would know the results of that vote.

    • where is your common sense. where have you been when liberals were messing up the country. we have adecent law abiding quiet man who does not go around hollering yelling and shaking his fists. he just goes about running the country in a quiet effective manner. wake up people. appreciate what you have Pat


  7. Polls like this only reveal 1 fact: the sheer stupidity of the electorate. How the hell is anyone REALLY making a legitimate evaluation of Ignatieff's economic management skills?

    • He has no economic resume to speak of, Canadians aren't impressed with what they hear from him, and they're not unhappy with how things are right now. But good to know that you're so much smarter than the rest of us.

    • The Thinker's Conference warned the Liberals of the unhealthy economic future facing this country. What does he do at the end of the conference? He stands up and tells everyone that continued stifling taxation of the private sector that hires people and creates wealth is obviously the way to go.

      I mocked the idea of the Thinker's Conference. I was surprisingly impressed that they had the guts to get people to tell it like it is. Too bad they didn't listen to their own invited speakers.

      And no, that is not enough for a complete and thorough evaluation of Ignatieff's economic management skills. But it was a bad start.

    • When was the last time Igantieff made a major speech on the economy where he put forward his ideas and showed Canadians he understands economics. He hasn't. Yelling about cancelling the corporate tax cuts is not an economic platform. I suspect like most academics he doesn't understand economics. Thats why he leaves economic questions to Brison and McCallum during Question Period..

      • "I suspect like most academics he doesn't understand economics"

        You mean most academics like … economists?

    • what skills?

  8. I'd like to see a comparable poll around the time Chretien was Leader of the opposition, or better yet when Harper was second banana and Martin top dog. In other words Harper is a relatively known entity [ good and bad] and Ignatieff hasn't had a chance to screw up or shine. It's a pointless poll really…just what were folks expected to say? The good news for Harper seems to be he hasn't lost the public's trust despite some major screw ups…but the leash is getting shorter and his own track record is mixed at best.

      • Thanks.

      • 'Now Liberal Leader Michael Ignatieff is written off by the punditocracy, subject to quiet despair within his own ranks, already dismissed as a failure before leading the party in one election campaign. All we can say is, this movie has been shown before.'

        Indeed. This could all be viewed as a test of Ignatieff''s character, as it has been for opposition leaders before – elections are the real testing grounds,it's when Canadians do pay attention.

    • While you may be right. That it is tough for the Opposition leader to shine but he needs to come across as credible on the subjects he talks about. I will give you an example. He says he will not support the corporate tax cuts if they are in the next budget. Someone should tell him the corporate tax cuts were included in the 2007 budget which the Libs supported. Canadians are not stupid but he makes these kind of statements which destroy any credibility he may have.
      There are many other statements he has made and anybody who wants to can blow holes in what he is saying or he allows enough wiggle worm so that nobody can pin him down later. He is a terrible politician and would make a terrible PM.

      • All those things could have been said about Chretien in 93…admitttedly Ignatieff has a much steeper learning curve than Jean did.

      • 'Someone should tell him the corporate tax cuts were included in the 2007 budget which the Libs supported'

        Circumstances can change, right? Of course it is opportunistic on his part – should we be surprised, he is a politician after all.

    • Ig was away for 30 years ans hasn't a clue what's going on and just runs off at the mouth. He's an idiot.

  9. They are all idiots!

    • Thanks for taking the time out of your busy holiday schedule, do come again.:)

  10. A one out of ten for the Lieberal and a two out of ten for the Conservative ain't sayin' much. So long as the maggots that live on the private sector get to vote the largesse will go on and on and on. Aren't government workers enjoying a holiday today in lieu of Boxing Day while the huge majority of the private sector is at work toiling to pay their inflated pay packages. Seig Heil…

    • Sounds like you need to move Russia, your foolish.

  11. PROPAGANDA works … old Harper out there always claiming he is an ECONOMIST.

    Problem is Harper may claim to be an ECONOMIST but he is not … the TRUTH is Harper has NEVER worked as an ECONOMIST ever (or even had a REAL job) unless you count when he worked as a Professor's assistant (is that what he calls Mr Ignatieff except Mr Ignatieff was a REAL professor) when he did 1 one year grad program 20 odd years ago before he took his 1st REAL job as Reform Leader Mr Manning's assistant.

    Claiming to be an economist is a CON … and I guess it works (unfortunately … for us all).

    PS It was the Liberals who cleaned up the deficit in the 90s (even though the CON tried to claim credit for that) and its because the Liberals put our books in such good shape that Harper is still riding their coattails … but Harper has a better PROPAGANDA MACHINE, its impressive for sure … but its going cost us all a lot when the (CON) party is over.

    • your right paul martin did clean things up in spite of his boss jean chetien

    • Very well said,its costing us right now, on the world stage.Harper`s(CON) party is saying nothing new or nothing they could steal.We can no longer afford Harper and his gang of puppets,lets be rid of the monkey on Canada`s back and try to earn some respect back from Canadians not working.Putting Canadians back to work, would be a step in the right direction and you would`t have to claim your something your not (Economist),that would help .

    • You obviously don't know your politics, the Liberals are the ruination of our country.
      HARPER HAS HIS MASTERS IN FINANCES, what do you have that's so great.

  12. I always get a kick out of these sort of polls. Of course the Conservatives will poll better than the Liberals (or any opposition party) on matters of rule. If the Liberals were in power right now, I bet the numbers would favour them as well. The Liberals do not have to be trusted on the economy, because the only thing they have the power to do right now is to vote against any budgetary manner (and if the opposition agrees, call an election). People won't trust an opposition party over a governing party, in general, as you cannot be entirely sure what the opposition would do given equal circumstances.

    Really, the only thing these polls are useful for is to stir up partisan rhetoric. At this point, you can be sure the Conservatives are enjoying these figures (even if 41% support is quite tepid).

    • 21 % is worse than tepid.I wil take tepid

  13. I didn't imagine the numbers would be that high………in either case.

    Ignatieff is NOT a leader, Liberal supporters understand that now. his numbers too high.

    Harper though has an interesting aspect……41% means there a few who respect his economic policy but not enough to vote for him. Who are those people….Quebecers? Alberta liberals?

  14. Is there any information about the rational provided by the respondents? Was it a wave of support for incumbency, secure in the knowledge that if there was going to be a recession, we would have had it by now?

    • Hee, meant to write "rationale", not that it kind of doesn't work…

  15. That's not necessarily a bad breakdown, from my perspective. The CPC has shown they can screw around with our present and future prosperity like nobody's business. All other choices scare me even more.

  16. You are deluding yourself or being plain dishonest. Who managed the country most of the last century? Who managed the country in the 60's when the deficit began and accumulated over the next 20 years. Your friendly neighbourhood Liberal by the name of Pierre Elliot Trudeau with Jean Chretien as his esteemed Finance Minister. So quit with the b.s. Mulroney came into power with a $40 billion deficit and a recession with interest rates at 20%. So quit lying. There is a reason the Liberals are known as tax and spend and if Ignatieff ever wins we will see it again. Its in the Liberal DNA.
    The present deficit was absolutely necessary or unemployment would have gone thru the roof.
    You recall the Libs were crying no economic stimulus. Hence the attempted coalition. They got it in spades and then they argued it wasn't getting out the door fast enough. Then there was a call for more stimulus spending. No wonder Canadians don't give Ignatieff any credit for his knowledge of economics. He has made no major speech on it because he like most academics does not understand economics.

  17. Harvard Liberals have screwed the American economy, and Ignatieff wants to do the same thing to ours. It's not that people don't trust him, it's that they know he'll be a disaster.

    • 'Harvard Liberals have screwed the American economy,..'

      You mean like the Bushes?…wait no, weren't they Yale…not libs either…crap, you might be right.

      • Ivy League worthies in general regardless of party affiliation.

    • Here, here………truly said. I've always been of the opinion (right or wrong) that university/college professors live in a different world from the mainstream of society. Granted they are intelligent creatures but they don't seem to realize that being intelligent academically, does not a ruler of a country/party make. Their world of academics is a fairly protected environment with the hero worship of young, experience lacking students. You can't go from that world to the real world and rule at the snap of a finger

  18. Harper & Iggy are the best we can come up with . How do you choose the lessor of two evils. The only one that makes sense is Jack Layton. He would stand up for Canada , and stop pandering to all party faithful. If the liberals could draft Layton we would see a landslide majority government and a new and improved cleaned up Liberal party. The conservatives would never draft Layton because he is a pinko leftist commie who would feed the poor and try to return Canada as a fair and balanced player on the world stage. Remember when he said we should talk to the Taliban and was ridiculed by Harper , Hillier and MaKay and now we are practically begging to speak with them but they are less interested now as the Western forces are being badly beaten, We are led by idiots.

    • My guess is we may have a coalition between the Liberals and NDP after the next election if they combine together to have a majority of MPs, it may be the best scenario to take Canada on the path back to sanity instead of further down the rabbit hole with Harper … its a very big hole and we have only started.

    • Layton is a whiner, communism is his ploy, kill off big business and then no jobs, hello, the NDP are a communist party, you need to get your fact straight. No jobs you live off the government, do you not know what Russia is like.

  19. Polls show Canadians want mandatory minimum sentences for drug offenses which all experts say will FAIL and only increase the chaos, violence and gang activity in Canada … can a poll next time ask those in favour if those who want mandatory minimum sentences actually believe they will work (contrary to experts). I believe Canadians just want a solution that works and believe mandatory minimum sentences will work because they are being proposed (yet the CON are actually following the polls).

    Likewise for the ECONOMIC question, do Canadians believe that Mr Harper is better on the economy because they believe Mr Harper is an ECONOMIST ? He is NOT an economist … can a poll next time ask those who believe Mr Harper is better on the economy if they think he is an economist.

    Simple polls give simple answers.

  20. A vote for Harper is a wasted vote. A vote for Ignatieff is a slip of the pen.


    • A vote for Layton is a vote for Harper; a vote for Ignatieff is a giant leap into the unknown; a vote for Harper is voluntary masochism.

  21. I truly think that we as Canadians should be able to call a vote if the voted in person in this case Harper does not fulfil their campaign promise's . The government should also be held responsible for their crimes. like when back door or hidden deals are made. It seems that all they get is investigated by people that don't seem to give a damn and it all gets brushed under the table. When will we start standing up for our selves we sit back they raise the tax's ad more charges on every thing like gas and hydro GST ,ECHO tax. ETC. When are we going to stop bending over and do something about this crooked government.

    • You talk about crooked. I bet if you live in Ontario that you voted for McGuinty (Mr. liar and crooked) himself.

      Hopefully your idea of calling a vote to oust the current government, if they don't fulfill their campaign promises, will work against McGuinty. Now that guy seriously messed up his promises.

  22. The federal liberals are much better at handleing money over the conservatives who are hell bebt on bankrupting Canada. Throw the bums out!

    • Hmm another one who doesn't know his politics. the Liberals are all thief's. In the States they kill off the Presidents they don't like we allow our Prime Minster's to steal us blind.

  23. There is an urban myth that Harper is an economist. Nothing could be further from the truth. He never practiced or worked as an economist ever. He is a career politician of the reform variety with a hunger for power and reshaping the Canadian landscape to resemble a neo con heaven with gun toting rednecks, teaching creationism to poor unsuspecting children , and of course supporting Israel blindly because the Bible is his authority. He spends like a drunken sailor and runs his government like a propaganda department.

    • If that is so, how come our County was safe from the down fall of finances. I can't believe some of the crap that has come out of the mouths of some of you people, you are fools and don't know what your talking about, you run off at the mouth like the NDP.

  24. It's the liberal policies from the not-so distant past that helped ensure Canada didn't suffer from this financial crises.
    The conservatives just take the credit.

  25. Just in case you hadn't noticed there has been a world wide recession. I know most conservatives would not approve the bailouts however these are different circumstances. Also remember since the 60's when Trudeau commanded as Emporer of Canada taxes have risen 1600%

  26. Neither one of them is formed to run the economy of ten provinces, It should take one economist of each province. and how well could run the economy when there is more and more workers out of job?

  27. I do hope our election gives Harper the majority. We can get on with making this a great country and financially safe, Hooray for Harper, for once we have an honest Prime Minister, who's aim is NOT to fill his pockets with OUR money, but to run an honest county and our safety in the world economy.

    • Harper is too proud of himself and too arrogant to be a proper prime minister. He doesn't let his members speak for their constituents. We don't want a prime minister like that.