P.E.I. Green Party grabs lead in latest poll

For the first time a party that is not Liberal or Progressive Conservative has come out on top of a P.E.I. political poll from Corporate Research Associates.

The Island landscape has changed significantly in CRA polls over the last year

Peter-Bevan Baker's party leads the CRA poll for the first time. (Ken Linton/CBC)

For the first time a party that is not Liberal or Progressive Conservative has come out on top of a P.E.I. political poll from Corporate Research Associates.

The CRA poll, based on phone calls to 300 Islanders from Aug. 2-21, put the Green Party on top with the support of 38 per cent of Islanders, three points ahead of the governing Liberals.

The poll also saw a significant drop in support for the Tories. With just 20 per cent support for the PCs, the poll suggests the Island is moving towards a two-way race between the Liberals and Greens. Support for the NDP was unchanged at seven per cent.

The Greens grabbed their slight lead despite 49 per cent of those being polled saying they were satisfied with the performance of Premier Wade MacLauchlan's government.

CRA issues quarterly polls, and the landscape has changed significantly in the last year.

Last August's poll showed a clear lead for the Liberals, 21 points ahead of the second place Progressive Conservatives. Since then Green support has jumped 20 points. This has come at the expense of all three of the other parties.

Islanders also appear to be cementing their allegiances. In August 2017 34 per cent of Islanders refused to state a preference, were undecided, or said they would not vote. By last month that had fallen to 28 per cent.

While this is the first time the Green Party has led in the CRA poll, Leader Peter Bevan-Baker has been the first choice for premier in the poll since February of 2017.

The poll for party preference is considered accurate within 6.7 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. Overall, the accuracy of the poll is within 5.6 percentage points.

The margin of error suggests a virtual tie between the Liberals and Greens, but a clear lead for both parties over the Progressive Conservatives.

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Kevin Yarr

Kevin Yarr is the early morning web journalist at CBC P.E.I. You can reach him at kevin.yarr@cbc.ca.