Key Points in Harper Agenda Opposed by Majority of Canadians, Even
OTTAWA, April 20 /CNW/ - Results from a poll commissioned by Avaaz,
Canada's largest online civic activism community, point to strong
policy differences between Harper Conservatives and Canadians of all
Results of the poll, conducted by Environics Research, call into
question major policy hallmarks of both the Harper Government and the
current Conservative election campaign.
Poll numbers show that 56% of all Canadians (and 42% of Conservative
party supporters) oppose reducing corporate taxes - a key part of
Harper's former budget proposal. 74% of Canadians - including 64% of
Conservatives - support Canada's gun regulations (including the current
long gun registry), which Harper has vowed to scrap. And a majority of
Canadians who expressed an opinion on the question,say we should keep
the current system of public financing for political parties, including
42% Conservative supporters.
"These poll results point to a major democratic deficit in Canada,"
noted Ricken Patel, Avaaz Executive Director. "Stephen Harper isn't
attempting to deliver on the will of Canadians -- even Conservative
Canadians -- he's marching to the beat of a different drum. This
explains why Harper's campaign ads focus so heavily on personal attacks
- his "issues" simply aren't winners in the eyes of most Canadians."
The gap between Harper's platform and Canadian public opinion is
especially evident on international issues. Those polled listed
environmental issues as a key concern and the Harper Government has a
much-disparaged record on this front, in particular receiving
widespread international condemnation for helping to scupper UN efforts
to address climate change. The poll shows that 82% of Canadians - and
71% of conservatives -support a UN treaty on climate change.
"With such an unpopular agenda, it's no surprise that Harper looks set
to lose his bid for a majority government once again," added Patel.
Responding to this democratic deficit, the pro-democracy Avaaz community
has voted in an online poll to oppose Harper's reelection. Avaaz will
be promoting a strategic voting tool to its 450,000 members across the
country - one that helps citizens to identify and vote for opposition
candidates most likely to defeat the Conservative candidate in their
The research is based on telephone interviews conducted with a
representative sample of 2,000 Canadians (aged 18 plus), between March
30 and April 10, 2011. A sample of this size drawn from the population
will provide results accurate to within plus or minus 2.2 percentage
points, in 19 out of 20 samples.
For more information, visit www.avaaz.ca.
Poll Results Quick Summary
Decreasing Corporate Taxes
I'd like to ask you about the taxes currently paid by businesses and
corporations in Canada today.
Some people/Other people say that it's a good idea to reduce tax rates
for Canadian businesses because they will use this extra money to hire
more workers and boost the economy in a way that will benefit everyone.
Some people/other people say that it's a bad idea to reduce taxes for
Canadian businesses because they already pay relatively low taxes, and
cutting them more will increase the deficit and make it harder to pay
for public services everyone relies on.
34% Good idea to reduce corporate taxes
56% Bad idea to cut corporate taxes
49% Good idea to reduce corporate taxes
42% Bad idea to cut corporate taxes
Opposing UN Climate Treaty
Turning now to the issue of climate change, do you believe that Canada
should, or should not, support the United Nation's efforts to secure an
international global treaty to stop the future catastrophic impacts of
82% Canada should support a UN treaty
13% Canada should not support a UN treaty
71% Canada should support a UN treaty
23% Canada should not support a UN treaty
Deregulating Gun Ownership
As you may know, there are federal laws in Canada concerning the
ownership of firearms. This law requires that Canadians register each
firearm that they own, prohibits the ownership of certain kinds of
firearms, requires that owners pass a safety test AND a safety check,
and requires that firearms are stored unloaded in a secure place.
In general, do you strongly support, somewhat support, somewhat oppose
or strongly oppose this law?
54% Strongly support
20% Somewhat support
9% Somewhat oppose
13% Strongly oppose
1% Neither support or oppose
40% Strongly support
24% Somewhat support
13% Somewhat oppose
17% Strongly oppose
29% Neither support or oppose
Ending Public Financing
Federal political parties are currently funded by a combination of
private donations and public funds. Do you support this current system
of private and public funding for political parties, or do you think
that political parties should only be supported through private
48% Support current mix of private and public funding
43% Support private funding only
42% Support current mix of private and public funding
52% Support private funding only
I would now like to ask you about Canada's health care system.
Which of the following do you think is better?
Having a public system of health care in which all Canadians are
entitled to the same level of access to medically necessary health care
services without direct charges
Having a two-tier system in which there is both a private system where
patients pay directly out of their pockets for faster access to
services and a public system
69% Support a one-tier system
27% Support a two-tier system
60% Support a one tier system
37% Support a two tier system
For further information:
Emma Ruby-Sachs, Avaaz, 416-964-8377