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David Alward continues to hold a wide lead in preference for premier. (Jacques Poitras/CBC)

Premier David Alward is continuing to hold a wide lead in party support, according to the latest political poll.

Corporate Research Associates released its quarterly political poll on Thursday showing 44 per cent support Alward’s Progressive Conservatives.

The Liberals are in second place with 32 per cent support and the NDP remain in third spot with 19 per cent.

The Greens have five per cent and the People’s Alliance of New Brunswick registered zero per cent support for the second consecutive month.

The strong poll numbers come as voters in Rothesay are preparing for the June 25 byelection.

The vacancy opened up when Margaret-Ann Blaney, the former energy minister, resigned last month to become the president and chief executive officer of Efficiency New Brunswick. Blaney’s appointment has been criticized as patronage.

NDP Leader Dominic Cardy has announced he will run in the riding.

The PCs have nominated Hugh John (Ted) Flemming III and the Liberals have picked John Wilcox as their candidate.

The People’s Alliance of New Brunswick is endorsing Cardy.

Sharon Murphy is expected to run for the Green Party in the byelection. Murphy ran in the 2010 provincial election.

The Alward government saw a slight drop in support for its government between February and May.

The CRA poll shows the number of people who are completely or mostly satisfied with the Alward government is tied with the number of people who completely or mostly dissatisfied at 45 per cent.

In the February poll, 47 per cent of respondents were satisfied with the Alward government compared to 41 per cent who were dissatisfied.

CRA conducted the poll between May 14 and 30 and polled 419 New Brunswickers. The margin of error is plus-minus 4.8 per cent, 19 times out of 20.

Alward’s personal popularity jumped six percentage points between February and May. Alward is now picked by 37 per cent as the person they would prefer as premier.

The next leader of the Liberals was selected by 17 per cent as the best premier, followed by 12 per cent who picked NDP Leader Dominic Cardy.