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Satisfaction with N.S. Liberals continues to increase: survey

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan

Among Nova Scotians, satisfaction with the overall performance of the Liberal government led by Premier Stephen McNeil continues to increase, according to the latest survey by Narrative Research.

The Halifax-based market research company conducted interviews from Oct. 31 to Nov. 22 and included a number of questions on the performance of the provincial government. The survey is part of Narrative Research’s Atlantic Quarterly, an independent, quarterly telephone survey of Atlantic Canadians.

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“One of the things that we always ask about, we track over time and have for over 20 years is satisfaction with the government and voting intentions,” said Margaret Brigley, CEO of Narrative Research, adding that the research in Atlantic Quarterly is not commissioned by anyone.

The company released its findings, which are based on a sample of 800 adult Nova Scotians, in a press release on Tuesday.

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The findings show that overall satisfaction with the provincial government has climbed to 45 per cent, up from 42 per cent in August and 35 per cent in May, marking its highest level in 2019. However, 46 per cent expressed dissatisfaction, with an additional nine per cent saying they do not know or feel neither satisfied nor dissatisfied.

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According to the research, when considering which party to vote for, decided support for the provincial Liberals has also reached its highest point this year, while support for the PC Party has reached its lowest.

Liberal support now stands at 42 per cent, up from 39 per cent in August and 31 per cent in May. The PCs received support from 26 per cent of decided voters, down from 28 per cent in August and 33 per cent in May.

I think just an understanding of public opinion at any point in time and really making sure that the general public understands how the general perception perceives the government’s actions [is useful],” said Brigley.
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“In all of our tracking, we have not seen a provincial government get re-elected unless that satisfaction number hit 50 per cent or up, so we will track it over time to see where is the public right now in terms of their perception of performance.”

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The research also shows that the New Democrats achieved a bump in support at 21 per cent of decided voters, up five percentage points from August.

Support for the Green Party dipped to nine per cent of the intended vote, as compared to 15 per cent in August.

Three questions were asked in the telephone survey, which include “How satisfied are you with the overall performance of the provincial government led by Premier Stephen McNeil?” and “If a provincial election were held today in Nova Scotia, for which party would you vote?”

The percentage of Nova Scotians who are undecided about which party to vote for has dropped to 26 per cent from 34 per cent in the summer. Additionally, five per cent do not plan to vote or do not have a preference and seven per cent refused to state their intentions.