NDP, Liberals in statistical dead heat as prospect of snap B.C. election looms: poll

Click to play video: 'Exclusive Ipsos poll reveals B.C. election fallout'
Exclusive Ipsos poll reveals B.C. election fallout
Kyle Braid from Ipsos is speaking about an exclusive Global News poll about fallout from B.C.'s provincial election in May – Jun 13, 2017

A new poll shows that the result of a snap election in B.C. would be just as close as the outcome of May’s provincial election if it were to happen in the next few weeks or months.

The new poll by Ipsos Reid found that support for New Democrats and Liberals has not changed much since last month’s historically close election. Forty-two per cent of decided voters supported the NDP while 40 per cent backed the Liberals. The Green Party had the support of 15 per cent while two per cent backed other parties.

Most respondents said they would continue to support the party they voted for in May’s election if a snap election were to occur in the coming days. Ninety-four per cent of those who supported the NDP and 93 per cent of Liberal backers said they would vote the same way in an upcoming election.

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More Green Party supporters seemed to have had a change of heart. Seventy-five per cent of respondents who backed the Greens in last month’s election said they would do the same in the next election. Thirteen per cent of Green supporters said they would switch their vote to the NDP while 11 per cent would support the Liberals, though those numbers had a small sample size.

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The May 9 election ended with the Liberals winning 43 seats, while the NDP took 41 and the Green party secured three. The NDP is proposing a minority New Democrat government propped up by the Greens with 44 seats, compared with 43 for the Liberals, before the Speaker is taken into account.

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The narrow results of last month’s provincial election mean none of the three parties is eager to give up one of their voting members to take on the role of impartial arbiter of the house, and experts say an impasse could send voters back to the polls.

The survey asked respondents their thoughts on what should occur if the BC Liberals do not provide a Speaker, forcing a member of the NDP or Greens to fill the position.

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If that were to occur, 41 per cent of those polled said they would prefer to “have an NDP minority government supported by the Greens, even if the Speaker needs to vote in a partisan manner to break tie votes” while 39 per cent would rather “have another election that might produce a more decisive outcome.”

— With files from The Canadian Press

These are the findings of an Ipsos poll of 802 British Columbians conducted June 8 to 11, 2017. The poll was conducted online via the Ipsos I-Say Panel. These data were statistically weighted by region, age, gender and education to ensure the sample composition reflects that of the actual BC population according to Census data. The precision of Ipsos polls containing online data is measured using a credibility interval. In this case, the overall poll is accurate to within +/- 3.9 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, had all eligible voters been polled. The credibility interval will be wider among subsets of the population. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to coverage error, and measurement error.

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