DIEPPE, N.B. - On a day when Justin Trudeau's Liberal leadership bid won the support of Dominic LeBlanc — a scion of Canada's Liberal establishment — a new poll came out that suggests he could reshape the country's political landscape.

The latest Canadian Press Harris-Decima survey released Friday says 36 per cent of those who took part in the poll across the country last week said they would be certain or likely to vote Liberal in the next election if Trudeau is at the party's helm.

The poll says he would get "significant support" east of Manitoba, with 40 per cent of those surveyed in Ontario, 43 per cent in Quebec and 48 per cent in Atlantic Canada indicating they would be certain or likely to vote for the Liberals if Trudeau is leading the party.

"Justin Trudeau — more than any other prospective candidate we tested — holds the best prospect for a revival of the Liberal party," said Allan Gregg, chairman of Harris-Decima. "In fact he is the only candidate we tested that has the potential to broaden the Liberal vote beyond its current base."

Gregg said the results in Quebec "debunk the myth that the Trudeau name is a liability in the province of Quebec or among francophones."

The poll also suggests that while Trudeau is a threat to the Conservatives, the NDP has the most to lose from his leadership of the Liberals.

The poll suggests that if Quebec MP Marc Garneau were leading the Liberals, 18 per cent of respondents would be certain or likely to vote for the party, while the Bank of Canada's Mark Carney stood at 16 per cent.

The telephone poll taken between Sept. 27 and 30 of just over 1,000 Canadians is considered accurate within plus or minus 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

It also looked at LeBlanc's chances in the leadership race, but the New Brunswick MP set his own ambitions aside on Friday to back his lifelong friend.

LeBlanc's move, coming only three days after Trudeau announced his candidacy, effectively leaves the Montreal MP without any serious challengers waiting in the wings, prompting more speculation about a boring coronation rather than a exciting race leading to the final voting in April.

In a brief speech that was mostly in French, LeBlanc told about 250 people in Dieppe, N.B., that he and Trudeau have not only been friends since childhood, but they also share deep Liberal roots — LeBlanc's late father, former governor general Romeo LeBlanc, was a longtime Liberal MP and cabinet minister who served under Trudeau's famous father, former prime minister Pierre Trudeau.

LeBlanc said their families vacationed together in New Brunswick in August, and the two politicians share not only a close friendship, but the same political values.

"We spoke, Justin and I, about our shared love of Canada," he told a campaign event where the announcement was made. "We spoke about the challenges facing our country and we spoke about how we can participate, fully, in the future of Canada and in giving Canadians a progressive, inclusive government of which they can be proud."

In the past, LeBlanc has had aspirations to lead his party and briefly ran for the top job in 2008 before stepping aside for Michael Ignatieff.

Although he'd mused publicly about running again this time, he made no effort to put together a campaign team and few Liberals actually expected him to take the plunge. An insider close to Trudeau said no pressure was put on LeBlanc to stand aside.

For his part, LeBlanc made it clear he would be part of Trudeau's team.

"We have been friends our entire lives," he said. "I have seen up close Justin's toughness, his work ethic. Justin is one of the most energetic, hard-working people I have ever met. I've seen how his hard work, how his energy, how his enthusiasm can inspire others."

LeBlanc then pointed out there was another 200 people waiting outside the auditorium to see the two men.

In his speech, Trudeau spoke in broad terms about his desire to lead the party and the country. There were no policy announcements, no clues as to what he would do if handed the mantle of power.

But he pumped up the crowd with little effort. He also punctuated most of his sentences by looking directly as the assembled cameras like a seasoned campaigner.

"It's not about me. It's not even about our party," he said. "It's about the fact that Canadians are listening because they're not satisfied with the government they have. They want better. They know they deserve better."

Like LeBlanc, he spoke mostly in French, appealing to residents of the Moncton area, known for its large contingent of francophones and dedication to bilingualism. The area is part of LeBlanc's Beausejour riding in eastern New Brunswick, an area where the LeBlanc name is synonymous with Liberal royalty.

After the speech, Rick Sear said he liked what he heard from Trudeau.

"He expresses a vision of a new generation for Canada," said Sear, a retired accountant from Sussex. "It's really what we need in this country — new leadership. Let the younger people take over."

Sear also said he was impressed with Trudeau's vision.

"He expressed values, Canadian values," he said. "I know (Prime Minister Stephen) Harper has values that don't resonate with Canadians. His is a divisive type of leadership just to gain power. We need a vision that all Canadians can get behind."

Despite Trudeau's youthful appearance — he's 40 — Bertin LeBlanc said he reminds him of another era.

"It reminded me of the years when we felt that national unity was a priority, not only on the questions of language and culture but also in terms of economic development and respect for all provinces," said LeBlanc, who lives in Sainte-Marie-de-Kent, N.B.

Victor Boudreau, leader of New Brunswick's Opposition Liberal party, said Dominic LeBlanc has been a friend of his for 25 years, but he said it was clear why one friend was stepping aside for another.

"The buzz that has been created around Justin Trudeau's candidacy ... it's a buzz that we've not felt within the Liberal Party of Canada for quite some time now," he said. "That's certainly encouraging to see the attention that it's bringing to the party."

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  • Justin Trudeau speaks with Jordan Banks, managing director of Facebook Canada, at the Art Gallery of Ontario on October 11, 2012.

  • The audience for Justin Trudeau's event with Facebook at the Art Gallery of Ontario on October 11, 2012.

  • Justin Trudeau speaks with Jordan Banks, managing director of Facebook Canada, at the Art Gallery of Ontario on October 11, 2012.

  • Justin Trudeau answers questions after an event with Facebook at the Art Gallery of Ontario on October 11, 2012.

  • Justin Trudeau speaks with Jordan Banks, managing director of Facebook Canada, at the Art Gallery of Ontario on October 11, 2012.

  • Liberal MP's Justin Trudeau, right, is shown with Dominique Leblanc in Ottawa on in this May 11, 2011 photo. Trudeau is capping his first week as a candidate for the federal Liberal leadership with an endorsement from a one-time contender for the party's top job.

  • Liberal leadership candidate Justin Trudeau, right, greets supporters at a rally for his bid for the Liberal leadership race in Mississauga, Ont., on Thursday, Oct. 4, 2012.

  • Liberal leadership candidate Justin Trudeau speaks to supporters at a rally for his bid for the Liberal leadership race in Mississauga, Ont., on Thursday, Oct. 4, 2012.

  • Justin Trudeau signs boxing photos for the North Burnaby Boxing Club.

  • Linda Ching, 16, started the night by proudly saying -- in English, Mandarin and French -- her first vote will be for Justin Trudeau.

  • A supporter picks up Liberal leadership candidate Justin Trudeau following a event in Richmond, B.C.

  • Two year-old Shann Thind looks up to Liberal leadership candidate Justin Trudeau as he gives his speech during a event in Richmond, B.C.

  • Liberal leadership candidate Justin Trudeau signs photos of him boxing following a event in Richmond, B.C., Wednesday, Oct. 3, 2012. Trudeau announced Tuesday in Montreal that he will run for the leadership of the Liberal party of Canada.

  • Justin Trudeau returns two-year old Shann Thind to his parents as he gives a speech during a event in Richmond, B.C.

  • The crowd gets to their feet after Justin Trudeau's speech.

  • Margaret Kemper Trudeau, Justin's mother and ex-wife of former prime minister Pierre Trudeau, called the campaign and media attention over her son "deja vu."

  • Justin Trudeau hugs his mother, Margaret Kemper Trudeau, at his Richmond, B.C. event.

  • Justin Trudeau signs boxing gloves for a B.C. fan and promises to return for some sparring.

  • Justin Trudeau held a brief media availability after his Richmond, B.C. speech.

  • Federal Liberal leadership candidate Justin Trudeau speaks to an Edmonton Oilers fan at a seniors centre in Calgary, Alta., Wednesday, Oct. 3, 2012.


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  • "What's up!?" <em>Credit: CP</em>

  • He looks sexy in that uniform, but <em>what is with that moustache</em>!? <em>Credit: CBC</em>

  • Nice sweater. However, we'd like to call attention to Trudeau's blue shirt. <em>Credit: Althia Raj, The Huffington Post Canada</em>

  • "I like to box!" <em>Credit: CBC</em>

  • One of the weirdest publicity stunts ever to be performed on Parliament Hill. Even Trudeau finds it funny. <em>Credit: CP</em>

  • Seriously!? <em>Credit: CP</em>

  • Blue shirt appearance number two. <em>Credit: CP</em>

  • We're not going to knock a guy on his wedding day. <em>Credit: CP</em>

  • Keeping it classy by performing a striptease. See the full video <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2011/11/18/justin-trudeau-striptease_n_1101153.html" target="_hplink">here</a>. <em>Credit: Althia Raj, The Huffington Post Canada</em>

  • Trudeau was not having a good hair day in this picture. <em>Credit: CP</em>

  • *Dreamy!* <em>Credit: CP</em>

  • Pairing fall's two "it" colours (black and white) together. Smart sartorial decision one. <em>Credit: CP</em>

  • Okay... <em>Credit: CP</em>

  • No! Just. No. <em>Credit: Althia Raj, The Huffington Post Canada</em>

  • Blue shirt appearance number three. <em>Credit: CP</em>

  • Seriously. This moustache is killing us to look at. (Also, blue shirt appearance number four.) <em>Credit: CP</em>

  • Cheese. <em>Credit: Media Ball</em>

  • It is <em>not</em> okay for an MP or a Senator to wear this. Ever. <em>Credit: CP</em>

  • The weigh-in. <em>Credit: CP</em>

  • A possible future Prime Minister, folks. <em>Credit: CP</em>

  • Trudeau celebrates! <em>Credit: CP</em>

  • Again with the bad hair day! <em>Credit: CP</em>

  • There are no words. The hair. The moustache. The poorly tied tie. Why, Justin? Why!? <em>Credit: CP</em>

  • Blue shirt appearance number five. You bored yet? <em>Credit: CP</em>

  • Adorbs! <em>Credit: CP</em>

  • Blue shirt appearance number six. We're starting to wonder if this is the only shade he has in his wardrobe. <em>Credit: CP</em>

  • Holy flying fur! <em>Credit: CP</em>

  • Really? And you may run to be Canada's next Prime Minister? <em>Credit: Media Handout</em>

  • This is the Justin Trudeau hair we like. <em>Credit: CP</em>

  • Yay! Blue shirt appearance number seven. (That cowboy hat is appropriate, and a sartorially smart decision for the Stampede. Well done.) <em>Credit: CP</em>

  • Keeping it casual. Though, Justin, we suggest you get someone to tailor your jeans (they're far too big). <em>Credit: CP</em>

  • And, for the grand finale: blue shirt appearance number eight. You're welcome. <em>Credit: CP</em>