People Are Just Plain Stupid
I wish I had a better head for polls. Even after two cups of coffee this Globe and Mail story, with the totally fair and balanced headline Voters fear Tory Agenda, has me doubting my own grasp of political issues.
When respondents were asked whether they were "afraid" of Mr. Harper's positions on "abortion, the death penalty and same-sex marriage," 39 per cent said yes and 43 per cent said no. The remaining 18 per cent said they did not know or declined to answer.
Given the question itself would lead some to believe there was reason to be "afraid". These number don't look that bad to me. Particularly that 18%.
The only positive point to be made is that it doesn't look like it's all Harpers' fault. But then again they didn't ask: Are you more afraid of Stephen Harper than Peter MacKay or Bernard Lord.?
A change in leadership would do little to aid the Conservatives, the poll suggests. Asked whether they would vote for the Tories if Mr. MacKay were leader, 26 per cent of decided voters said yes. Exactly the same number said they would support the party if Mr. Lord were leader.
The poll was conducted in Ontario and Quebec. I'm betting a dollar to a doughnut that the Quebec findings aren't reflected in the question on who would be better able to preserve national unity.
"Just as important, half of those surveyed said Prime Minister Paul Martin was better able to preserve national unity; only 26 per cent said Mr. Harper would do a better job."
I do so wish I had a better head for polling. Others will have opinions on this I'm sure and I'll link them below as the day goes on. But even after a third cup of coffee the results look the same me. The pollsters were cagey. The respondents were uninformed. The media is biased.