Tories drop, NDP surge in new poll
Newfoundland and Labrador Premier Kathy Dunderdale and the governing Progressive Conservatives lost a considerable amount of support this spring, although they still hold a commanding lead over other parties.
The latest quarterly tracking poll by Halifax-based Corporate Research Associates shows the PCs have 57 per cent of support among decided votes. That is down from 73 per cent just three months ago.
The poll shows that support for the Liberals is up from 18 per cent to 22 per cent, with the most dramatic gains going to the NDP, who leaped from eight per cent three months ago to 20 per cent in the latest survey.
The poll was conducted from May 11 to May 28, shortly after the federal election saw two New Democrats win election to Parliament.
The poll suggests the NDP could pose a considerable challenge to the Liberals in the Opposition benches, as the Oct. 11 general election draws closer.
The results also suggest Dunderdale, who replaced Danny Williams as premier last December, has slipped in terms of personal popularity.
Dunderdale came in for criticism during the federal election campaign, particularly after she endorsed Conservative Leader Stephen Harper over his pledge to back the Lower Churchill hydroelectric deal. An apparent rift between Williams and the PCs under Dunderdale has also provided fodder to the political rumour mill.
The poll, which involved a sample of 400 adults, pegged Dunderdale's personal popularity at 51 per cent, down from 64 per cent in a poll released in March.
Voters remain comparatively cool to Liberal Leader Yvonne Jones, who had an approval rating of 16 per cent, down from 18 per cent in March.
NDP Leader Lorraine Michael, by contrast, saw her approval jump from five per cent to 14 per cent.
CRA said the poll results are considered accurate to within 4.9 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.
About 17 per cent of those surveyed said they were undecided, CRA said.