The quarterly report cards for Canada’s provincial premiers are in and the results do not look good for the two premiers who will face voters as soon as next year.
The survey, conducted by Angus-Reid between August 21-27, found that Nova Scotia Premier Darrell Dexter and British Columbia Premier Christy Clark have the lowest approval ratings in the country. The two also happen to be the two premiers whose provinces are next scheduled to go to the polls.
STORY CONTINUES BELOW SLIDESHOW
<a href="http://www.angus-reid.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/2012.09.10_Premiers_CAN.pdf" target="_hplink">Angus Reid Public Opinion surveyed 6,657 Canadian adults</a> from August 21 to August 27, 2012. The margin of error is +/- 1.2 per cent, 19 times out of 20.
Brad Wall - Net Approval +38
Approve: 66 per cent Disapprove: 28 per cent Not Sure: 6 per cent
Alison Redford - Net Approval +18
Approve: 55 per cent Disapprove: 37 per cent Not Sure: 8 per cent
Greg Selinger - Net Approval +7
Approve: 48 per cent Disapprove: 41 per cent Not Sure: 10 per cent
David Alward - Net Approval +3
Approve: 47 per cent Disapprove: 44 per cent Not Sure: 10 per cent
Kathy Dunderdale - Net Approval -15
Approve: 39 per cent Disapprove: 54 per cent Not Sure: 8 per cent
Dalton McGuinty - Net Approval -28
Approve: 32 per cent Disapprove: 60 per cent Not Sure: 9 per cent
Jean Charest (Outgoing) - Net Approval -32
Approve: 32 per cent Disapprove: 64 per cent Not Sure: 3 per cent
Christy Clark - Net Approval -36
Approve: 28 per cent Disapprove: 64 per cent Not Sure: 8 per cent
Darrell Dexter - Net Approval -41
Approve: 26 per cent Disapprove: 67 per cent Not Sure: 8 per cent
Dexter has the lowest approval and highest disapproval ratings in Canada at 26 and 67 per cent, respectively. The NDP leader’s fortunes have been sinking, as his approval rating has dropped by nine points since March 2012. Considering that Stephen McNeil, leader of the opposition Liberals in Nova Scotia, has an approval rating of 50 per cent – one that has held relatively steady for months – the New Democrats should be in dire straits when the next election is called.
The news continues to get worse for Christy Clark, the beleaguered premier of British Columbia. The province has fixed election dates, and Clark’s rendezvous with the electorate is fixed for May 14, 2013. Her approval rating stands at only 28 per cent in the poll, down two points from May and five since March, while her disapproval rating is up one point to 64 per cent.
As in Nova Scotia, the unpopular premier will be facing off against a popular opposition leader. Adrian Dix of the B.C. New Democrats tied with Lorraine Michael, NDP leader in Newfoundland and Labrador, for the highest approval rating among opposition leaders in Canada. His approval rating is 53 per cent, up six points since March. Angus-Reid did not include data for Robert Ghiz, premier of PEI or the territorial leaders.
That the New Democrats can boast the two most popular opposition leaders in the country is notable. In fact, the NDP’s party leader is also the preferred opposition figure in Saskatchewan (John Nilson), Ontario (Andrea Horwath) and New Brunswick (Dominic Cardy). Only in Quebec, where there is no NDP, and Alberta, where Danielle Smith of the Wildrose Party is more popular, do the New Democrats not have the most popular alternative to a provincial government.
But while those leaders whose time is running out find themselves on the bottom of the heap, the three most popular premiers can bask in their good fortunes for some time as their re-election bids will not take place before 2015. They are Manitoba Premier Greg Selinger (approval rating of 48 per cent), Alberta Premier Alison Redford (approval rating of 55 per cent) and Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall.
Wall tops the list for the seventh consecutive time dating back to March 2011 with an approval rating of 66 per cent. Only 28 per cent of Saskatchewanians disapprove of the 46-year-old premier. His net score of +38 not only makes him the most popular premier in the country; it makes him the most popular party leader in Canada. Time for Brad Wall to start his French lessons?
Éric Grenier taps The Pulse of federal and regional politics for Huffington Post Canada readers on most Tuesdays and Fridays. Grenier is the author of ThreeHundredEight.com, covering Canadian politics, polls and electoral projections.
Also on HuffPost:
A <a href="http://abacusdata.ca/2012/08/17/federal-politics-job-approval-leader-favourability-and-party-growth-potential/" target="_hplink">new poll from Abacus Data</a> reveals how Canadians feel about the three main party leaders in Ottawa.
3. Liberal Leader Bob Rae
24 Per Cent Favourable 36 Per Cent Unfavourable 12 Per Cent Net Unfavourable
2. Conservative Leader Stephen Harper
36 Per Cent Favourable 47 Per Cent Unfavourable 11 Per Cent Net Unfavourable
1. NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair
31 Per Cent Favourable 27 Per Cent Unfavourable 4 Per Cent Net Favourable
Alison Redford on insisting Alberta wont's see a PST
“Gosh, my goodness. Today is Thursday. Did I say it yesterday? Did I say it on Tuesday? Did I say it on Friday?” “We are not introducing a provincial sales tax, period. I’ll say it again tomorrow if you like." February 2013.
Alison Redford's Christmas Greeting
In a tongue-in-cheek greeting on This Hour Has 22 Minutes 2012 holiday special, <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/12/07/alison-redford-funny-christmas-greeting_n_2258800.html?1354906380">Redford shared the following message to Canada</a> - "Christmas is my favourite time of year in Alberta. Most people spend their time with family and friends. I choose to spend the bulk of my time the way I do the rest of the year - having a scotch with my friends from the oil and gas industry; talking about how to relax environmental regulations." Looks like another mild winter. You're welcome, Canada."
Ed Stelmach On U.S.
"A good neighbour lends you a cup of sugar. A great neighbour supplies you with 1.4 million barrels of oil per day." -- <a href="http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/article/831381--don-t-tread-on-ed-premier-stelmach-defends-alberta-oilsands-in-washington-post" target="_hplink">In an ad in <em>The Washington Post.</em></a> (CP)
Redford On B.C. Premier Clark
"We have every other premier across the country understanding the importance of the energy economy and understanding that it's important for all Canadians that we do work together." -- <a href="http://www.calgaryherald.com/news/alberta/Debate+over+Northern+Gateway+pipeline+entirely+appropriate/7088360/story.html" target="_hplink">Taking a jab at B.C. Premier Christy Clark.</a> (CP)
Ralph Klein on Evolution
"Dinosaur farts." -- On what may have brought about the <a href="http://www.edmontonsun.com/news/alberta/2010/12/14/16554851.html" target="_hplink">Ice Age.</a> (CP)
Ralph Klein On Belinda Stronach
"I wasn't surprised that she crossed over to the Liberals. I don't think she ever did have a Conservative bone in her body. Well, maybe one." -- Speaking at a charity roast in 2006, <a href="http://www.edmontonsun.com/news/alberta/2010/12/14/16554851.html" target="_hplink">Klein comments on MP Belinda Stronach</a>, who used to date fellow Tory MP Peter McKay, crossing the floor to join the Liberal Party. (CP)
Ralph Klein takes on Dalton McGuinty
"I'm no doctor, but I think that Mr. McGuinty's got a case of premature speculation," said Klein, reacting to comments made in March 2006 by Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty opposing any two-tiered health care system in Ontario that Klein has proposed in Alberta, which was believed would allow quicker access to surgery for those who pay.
Peter Lougheed On Oilsands Development
"Would somebody please outline to me the advantages of our doing it this way? For me, an Albertan? What are they? Can you give me a couple of them? What do I as an Albertan gain by this mad rush up there?" -- <a href="http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/rob-magazine/the-second-coming-of-peter-lougheed/article659021/?page=all" target="_hplink">He asks in <em>The Globe And Mail</em></a>. (CP)
Ralph Klein On Mad Cow Disease
"I guess any self-respecting rancher would have shot, shovelled and shut up, but he didn't do that. Instead he took it to an abattoir." -- At the discovery of mad cow disease <a href="http://ca.m.yahoo.com/w/legobpengine/news/blogs/former-alberta-premier-ralph-klein-finally-getting-order-223011036.html?.b=entertainment&.ts=1340325348&.intl=ca&.lang=en-ca&.ysid=yXfXSNumJYMPRMtsjsr3kcZ6" target="_hplink">on an Alberta ranch.</a> (CP)
Ralph Klein On Edmonton
A fine city with too many socialists and mosquitoes. At least you can spray the mosquitoes." -- In 1990 as a <a href="http://www.edmontonsun.com/news/alberta/2010/12/14/16554851.html" target="_hplink">Tory MLA from Calgary.</a> (CP)
Peter Lougheed On NEP
"Let them freeze in the dark." -- Lougheed takes on Trudeau regarding the NEP in the 70s. The quote is also cited as the more contentious bumper sticker fodder, 'Let the eastern bastards freeze in the dark.'