Forty per cent of Canadians expect Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to land on Santa’s “naughty” list this holiday season — and they think he’s more likely to wake up to a lump of coal than Chinese President Xi Jinping, according to a new Ipsos poll.
Ipsos asked Canadians about whether a list of high-profile individuals — from political leaders, to CEOs, to celebrities — belong on Santa’s “nice” list or his “naughty” list.
Canadians who responded to the survey said Trudeau was more likely to end up on the naughty list than the Chinese president, who heads the government that detained two Canadians, Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig, for more than 1,000 days.
The Chinese government has also been accused of committing genocide against the Uyghur population in the Xinjiang region.
“It’s probably just a lack of awareness of who (Xi) is,” Darrell Bricker, CEO of Ipsos, said in an interview with Global News.
The poll found 26 per cent of Canadians would put Xi on the naughty list, while 40 per cent would do the same to Trudeau. Just three per cent said Xi belongs on Santa’s “nice’ list.
“(Of) the people who do have an opinion of him, the percentage that put him on the nice list is way lower than the percentage that puts him on the naughty list.”
Just 18 per cent of Canadians expect Trudeau to be on Santa’s “nice” list, Ipsos found. Vladimir Putin narrowly bested Trudeau with his likelihood to land on the naughty list, with 44 per cent expecting the Russian president to get coal this holiday season.
“The leader of Russia is not seen as a particularly positive person by Canadians,” Bricker said.
But, he added, “Justin Trudeau is right up there, in terms of the notoriety and difficulty that he has with Canadians right now.”
While Trudeau and Putin clinched the top two spots for the folks Canadians expect to see on the naughty list, they weren’t alone. Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg came in third, with 32 per cent putting him on the naughty list, followed by Ontario Premier Doug Ford at 29 per cent and Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos at 26 per cent.
When it comes to major tech companies like Meta and Amazon, they used to be well-regarded, Bricker said. But now, “their motivations and the effect that they have on the world” are things “people feel that they haven’t been as accountable for as they should be,” he said.
“The public really does like their services to a large degree. But the motivations of the organizations and how they behave, that’s another question,” Bricker added.
As for provincial leaders like Alberta Premier Jason Kenney, whom 19 per cent of Canadians expect to see on the naughty list, and Ford, Omicron could be to blame for their slipping approval.
“Even a couple of months ago, people thought that we were kind of improving — and when you take away a sense of improvement and momentum, particularly after the couple of years that we’ve been through, it’s a real downer for the public,” he said.
“I think it’s seeping through into how they’re feeling about the performance of their provincial political leaders.”
Who makes Santa's nice list?
Canada’s health-care workers are the most widely expected to find themselves on Santa’s nice list, the poll found, with 54 per cent of Canadians saying that they deserve to wake up to a pile of presents under the tree.
“Canadians really do see them as the champions leading us through this crisis that we’re going through, much more so than they see politicians being the leaders,” Bricker said.
Health-care workers topping the nice list “shouldn’t be a surprise,” he added — but there was one major upset on this year’s nice rankings.
Every year, the Queen “does really well” in these rankings. But this year, she was bested by Canadian superstar Ryan Reynolds. The actor came in a distant second, after health-care workers, with 29 per cent of Canadians expecting to see his name on Santa’s nice list this year.
The Queen, on the other hand, came in third. Just 25 per cent of Canadians think she belongs on the nice list, according to Ipsos.
“(Reynolds) should be very proud of being able to break through with Canadians, not just in terms of being, you know, a leader in the entertainment world, but people really seeing him as a personal leader,” Bricker said.
“Maybe he should be thinking about running for office.”
Chief public health officer Dr. Theresa Tam, meanwhile, was the fourth most likely to land on the nice list at 23 per cent. She was followed by environmental activist Greta Thunberg, who came in fifth after 22 per cent of Canadians said they expect her to wake up to a stocking stuffed with gifts.
Exclusive Global News Ipsos polls are protected by copyright. The information and/or data may only be rebroadcast or republished with full and proper credit and attribution to “Global News Ipsos.” This poll was conducted between Dec. 10 and 15, 2021, with a sample of 1,001 Canadians aged 18-plus interviewed online. The precision of Ipsos online polls is measured using a credibility interval. This poll is accurate to within ± 3.5 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, had all Canadians aged 18-plus been polled.