Kenney Leadership Bid Splits Views in Alberta

With former federal minister as leader, the Progressive Conservatives would move to first place in voting intention.

Calgary, AB – Albertans are divided on the prospect of Jason Kenney becoming the next head of government, but his entry into the provincial political scene would boost the fortunes of the Progressive Conservatives, a new Insights West poll has found.

In the online survey of a representative provincial sample, one third of Albertans (34%) say they would like to see Jason Kenney as premier, while 37% would not.

Kenney is more popular among Albertans who voted for the Progressive Conservatives (58%) and the Wildrose Party (51%) in last year’s provincial election.

The Wildrose Party is ahead of all rivals in current voting intention, with 35% of decided voters saying they would cast a ballot for Wildrose if an election took place tomorrow. The governing New Democratic Party (NDP) is second with 26%, followed by the Progressive Conservatives with 22%, the Liberal Party with 11% and the Alberta Party with 1%.

However, in a separate question that included Kenney as PC leader, the political scene shifts into a three-way race, with the Progressive Conservatives holding a six-point edge over the NDP (32% to 26%), and the Wildrose Party a close third (24%).

 

“In the early stages of Jason Kenney’s leadership bid, he manages to push the Wildrose Party into third place,” says Mario Canseco, Vice President, Public Affairs, at Insights West. “The numbers suggest that a Kenney-led PC Party would emerge as the main rival for the incumbent NDP in the next provincial election.”

Wildrose Party leader Brian Jean boasts the best approval rating this month, with 51% of Albertans (up nine points since the Insights West “Alberta Government Report Card” released in May) saying they are satisfied with his performance as opposition leader.

The numbers are lower for Premier and NDP leader Rachel Notley (38%), acting PC leader Ric McIver (26%), acting Liberal leader David Swann (23%) and Alberta Party leader Greg Clark (17%).

Seven-in-ten Albertans (69%) consider the economy and jobs as the most important issue facing the province, with Energy and Pipelines (7%) and Government Accountability (7%) in single digits.

About Insights West:

Insights West is a progressive, Western-based, full-service marketing research company. It exists to serve the market with insights-driven research solutions and interpretive analysis through leading-edge tools, normative databases, and senior-level expertise across a broad range of public and private sector organizations. Insights West is based in Vancouver and Calgary.

About this Release:

Results are based on an online study conducted from July 9 to July 12, 2016, among a representative sample of 601 Albertan adults. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is +/- 4.0 percentage points. Click here to view the detailed data tabulations.

For further information, please contact:

Mario Canseco
Vice President, Public Affairs, Insights West
778-929-0490
mariocanseco@insightswest.com

 

Photograph: Bill Burris