OTTAWA – In the minds of Canadians, their country’s reputation on the world stage has improved under the Trudeau Liberals, according to a new poll from Nanos Research and the Institute for Research on Public Policy.
The same survey showed an increased number of respondents see federal-provincial relations improving under the Liberals compared with the previous Conservative government.
But the finding also indicate the Liberals are no better off than the Conservatives were at similar times during their mandates when it comes to whether Canada is headed in the right direction, or how well the government is performing.
According to the findings, there was a more than 20 point jump in positive sentiment toward Canada’s international reputation after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau won power in Ottawa. And pollster Nik Nanos says the trend has continued to climb.
As well, Canadians’ views on federal-provincial relations is viewed by respondents as more positive under the Liberals, according to the 10th annual Mood of Canada survey.
But the post-election enthusiasm toward the Trudeau government’s overall performance has declined in the last year, said Nanos.
“Perhaps most striking are the responses this year to the question of whether the country is going in the right or wrong direction,” he said.
“(The results) are not very different from those garnered by the Harper government in the periods following the 2008 and 2011 elections.”
After both election victories, Stephen Harper’s Conservatives were seen by 64 per cent of respondents as taking the country in the right direction.
A year later, those numbers dropped, with about half of those polled having the same opinion.
Similarly, the Liberals saw 63 per cent support for their direction of the country after being elected. That support dipped in this year’s survey to 54 per cent.
The Nanos–IRPP tracking study asked the opinions of 1,000 Canadians as part of a random, hybrid telephone and online survey of 1,000 Canadians, conducted between December 16 and 19, where participants were asked by telephone live agents to answer a survey online. The results are considered accurate within plus or minus 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.
In its 2015 findings, the survey indicated that 59 per cent of Canadians saw their country’s standing on the world stage improved or somewhat improved. That number climbed to 63 per cent this year.
Comparably, only 18 per cent of respondents felt the same way under the Conservatives in 2013, rising to 35 per cent in 2014.
When asked whether federal-provincial relations had improved or somewhat improved, the Conservatives saw support numbers in the 10-20 per cent range from 2007 when the tracking polls began until the time they left office. Those numbers spiked to within the 50 per cent range under the Liberals.
“Overall the long-term trend suggests that it’s a stretch to view the Liberals as being the one party that is able to harness voters’ excitement,” said Nanos.
“However, when it comes to how Canadians feel about our reputation globally and how our federation is functioning, there is some sunshine associated with the Trudeau government.”