Poll shows Liberals' lead grows while PQ support fades
Philippe Couillard’s Liberal Party has grown its lead over Pauline Marois’ Parti Quebecois with just days to go before the April 7 provincial election, an CTV News Ipsos Reid poll reports.
The poll gives the Liberals 37 percent of decided voters, with 28 percent going to the PQ, 19 percent to Francois Legault’s CAQ and 13 percent to the Quebec Solidaire party, led by Francoise David.
Support for the Liberals is unchanged, but the PQ has lost four points since the last CTV-Ipsos Reid poll on March 19. The CAQ has risen three points, as has the QS.
Seven percent of voters remain undecided.
While the poll is good news for the Couillard Liberals, who have maintained their support and bad news for the PQ, it's a particularly welcome result for the Coalition Avenir Quebec, whose leader was praised for his performance in the leaders debate last Thursday.
"It looks what Francois Legault is doing is, being very visible and being on all of the tribunes seems to be working well for him because there are significant increases in his support," said Luc Durand of Ipsos Reid.
PQ loses lead among francophones
The PQ, which until recently held a large lead among francophones, has seen that advantage disappear, as the Liberals and PQ are now tied at 31 percent support among French-speaking Quebecers, while the CAQ has 21 percent and the Quebec Solidaire clocks in at 14 percent. Other parties have just two percent support among those who opted to complete the online survey in French.
The Liberals have a massive lead people who chose to complete the survey in English, as 83 percent of that demographic supports the Liberals, while only three percent say that they will cast votes for the PQ, four percent support the CAQ. Six percent of anglophones support the QS, one percent the Option Nationale and three percent chose other parties.
The Liberals have a 12 percent lead among voters considered most likely to cast their ballots. Those who replied that “nothing short of an unforeseen emergency could stop me from getting to the voting booth and casting my vote,” support the Liberals more than other parties, as 40 percent chose Couillard’s party, while 28 percent support the PQ, 18 percent the CAQ and 12 percent the QS.
Shifts could still be possible, however, as almost three in 10 Quebecers replied that their vote could change, or more precisely, 28 percent replied that their vote “is moveable depending on what happens in the rest of the campaign.”
PQ and Liberal voters don’t appear likely to flee their parties, as 81 percent of Liberal supporters replied that they would stay with their party regardless of what happens, while 78 percent of PQ voters said the same for their party.
Only 57 percent of CAQ supporters said that they would not switch under any circumstance while same percentage of QS supporters replied in that vein.
CAQ a popular second choice
When it comes to voters’ second choice, 33 percent chose the CAQ, 21 percent the QS, 11 percent chose the PQ and 10 percent chose the Liberals. The Option Nationale was listed as the second choice by six percent of voters, while 19 percent listed another party.
There’s little risk of Liberal voters defecting to support the PQ, as just four percent said that they might make such a switch, but an impressive 56 percent of Liberal supporters listed the CAQ as their second choice and 11 percent chose the QS as their second option.
Conversely, only five percent of PQ voters listed the Liberals as their second choice, while 43 percent listed the QS as their second choice, while 31 percent of PQ voters had CAQ down as their second option.
So while the CAQ could benefit from any slips by the Liberals or PQ, so too could those parties gain if Legault stumbles. Any decline by the CAQ would help the Liberals more than the other parties, as 36 percent of CAQ voters chose the Liberals as their second option, while 26 percent listed the PQ as their second choice.
The CTV poll results might also get the PQ thinking of ways of poaching votes from the QS, as 33 percent of QS voters had the PQ as their second choice, while a mere nine percent listed the Liberals.
When asked which of the candidates would make the best premier, 33 percent chose Couillard, 25 percent chose Marois, 25 percent chose Legault, while 13 percent said the QS leader Francoise David would make the best premier. Green Party leader Alex Tyrrell picked up three percent of the votes in that category.
The Ipsos Reid poll sampled 1,012 Quebecers online between March 28 and April 1. The poll is considered accurate to within 3.5 percentage points.