Horgan Connecting With British Columbians, But Clark Ahead on Economy

Most residents support banning political donations from corporations and unions, and just one-in-five think the LNG industry will benefit the entire province.

Vancouver, BC – Research conducted by Insights West for CTV Vancouver reviewed the sentiments of British Columbians on the three main party leaders, as well as accountability, energy and the environment.

Leaders

The survey asked British Columbians whether the three main party leaders possess specific characteristics that people may find in politicians. BC New Democratic Party (NDP) leader John Horgan was ahead of his rivals in seven categories:

  • “Is in touch with the problems ordinary British Columbians face in their daily lives” – Horgan 51%, BC Green Party leader Andrew Weaver 30%, Premier and BC Liberals leader Christy Clark 24%.
  • “Generally agrees with you on issues you care about” – Horgan 42%, Weaver 33%, Clark 30%.
  • “Can deal with labor unions effectively in the event of a dispute” – Horgan 42%, Clark 26%, Weaver 10%.
  • “Shares your values” – Horgan 37%, Weaver 32%, Clark 26%.
  • “Can bring the kind of change BC needs” – Horgan 36%, Clark 23%, Weaver 21%.
  • “Is honest and trustworthy” – Horgan 34%, Weaver 31%, Clark 19%.
  • “Can unite BC and not divide it” – Horgan 26%, Clark 20%, Weaver 17%.

Premier Clark was ahead of the other two party leaders in three categories:

  • “Is a good speaker and communicator” – Clark 67%, Horgan 53%, Weaver 34%.
  • “Has the right temperament to serve as Premier” – Clark 53%, Horgan 40%, Weaver 27%.
  • “Is a good economic manager” – Clark 36%, Horgan 19%, Weaver 10%.

Across the province, 86% of residents believe it should be mandatory for candidates to attend at least one public debate in their riding with the candidates from other parties. Large proportions of British Columbians who voted for the BC NDP (91%), the BC Greens (88%) and the BC Liberals (83%) in the 2013 election support this idea.

In addition, 69% of British Columbians believe politicians who show up at festivals and celebrations (such as Vaisakhi) are just pandering for votes and are not truly interested in engaging with people from different cultures and backgrounds. This includes 76% of residents of South Asian descent, 70% of Europeans and 62% of East Asians.

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Accountability

The survey replicated some of the questions that were asked in an Insights West poll conducted for the Dogwood Initiative in April 2016. An overwhelming majority of British Columbians (91%) agree with having a truly transparent procurement process for work conducted on behalf of the provincial government.

More than three-in-four residents would ban out-of-province donations to British Columbia-based political parties (79%), ban all anonymous donations to British Columbia-based candidates and political parties (also 79%) and ban political parties from issuing payments or stipends to party leaders who already receive a salary as Members of the Legislative Assembly (78%, including 67% of BC Liberal voters in 2013)

Support across British Columbia increased for banning donations from corporations (77%, +7 since April 2016) and unions (73%, +6) to political parties or candidates. Three-in-four residents (75%, +9) are in favour of banning private political fundraisers where people pay thousands of dollars to spend time with elected politicians. Finally, seven-in-ten British Columbians (70%, +3) would ban former political operatives from lobbying governments and politicians they previously served.

“Following more than a year of discussions about provincial political fundraising, the proportion of residents who feel unease over existing regulations has surged,” says Mario Canseco, Vice President, Public Affairs, at Insights West. “Supporters of all three major parties are in agreement on banning big money in politics.”

Energy and the Environment

The provincial government gets tepid reviews on these files, with about two-in-five residents saying it did a good job in approving the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain Pipeline (39%) and taking action to reduce BC’s greenhouse gas emissions (38%).

Just over a third of British Columbians are satisfied with the provincial government’s push for the development of liquefied natural gas (LNG) (35%), but fewer think it has done a good job managing BC Hydro (33%) and dealing with the proposed Site C dam in Peace River (30%).

Across the province, 20% of residents (+5 since an Insights West poll conducted in March 2016) believe LNG will bring significant benefits to all BC residents, while 40% think it will benefit only some communities and 29% foresee no benefits for most residents.

The provincial government estimated in 2013 that at least 75,000 British Columbians were going to have jobs in LNG construction projects in 2017. Only 23% of residents are “very” or “somewhat” confident that at least 75,000 LNG jobs will be created four years from now, while two thirds (68%) are “not too confident” or “not confident at all” that this goal will be met.

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:

The information included in this release is based on three separate online studies:

Leaders: Results are based on an online study conducted by Insights West from April 26 to April 28, 2017, among 809 adult British Columbians. 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 +/- 3.5 percentage points. View the detailed data tabulations.

Accountability: Results are based on an online study conducted by Insights West from April 19 to April 22, 2017, among 802 adult British Columbians. 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 +/- 3.5 percentage points. View the detailed data tabulations.

Energy and the Environment: Results are based on an online study conducted by Insights West from April 21 to April 25, 2017, among 801 adult British Columbians. 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 +/- 3.5 percentage points. 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: tuchodi