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Pre-Election Poll published in Victoria Street Newz (Dec/Jan 04) PDF Print E-mail
Justice News
Sunday, 24 April 2005 01:08
Pre-Election Poll published in Victoria Street Newz (Dec/Jan 04)


Comparing this poll to others, published in the corporate mainstream media, it would appear that people have changed their minds rather significantly, or different people are being polled, or someone's lying.


                                                  Good         Fair        Poor

Victoria-Beacon Hill               32.5%     10.0%     57.5%
Victoria - Hillside                    35.5%      12.5%     52.0%



New Democrat ???. 51.5%       New Democrat ??? 48.0%
Liberal ??????.. 30.0%         Liberal ??????.. 34.5%
Green ??????? 14.5%         Green ??????... 11.5%
Other ???????.. 4.0%          Other ???????. 6.0%

By Gordon Pollard

With the next provincial election less than six months away, the B.C. Liberals are in danger of losing the Victoria - Beacon Hill and Victoria - Hillside seats to the NDP, according to the results of an exclusive public opinion survey conducted for the Victoria Street Newz.

A random sample of 200 decided voters in each constituency were polled by telephone from November 15th to 23rd and asked:

?If a provincial election were being held today, which party?s candidate would you vote for:

the B.C. Liberal Party led by Gordon Campbell,
the New Democratic Party led by Carole James,
or the Green Party led by Adriane Carr??

In Victoria - Beacon Hill, 51.5 per cent of respondents chose the NDP, 30 per cent the Liberals, and 14.5 per cent the Green Party. Four per cent supported other parties (Marijuana, Reform, Unity, and Democratic Alliance).

In Victoria - Hillside, the NDP obtained 48 per cent of the vote compared to 34.5 per cent for the Liberals and 11.5 per cent for the Green Party. Six per cent preferred other parties (Marijuana, Reform, Unity, Canadian Action, and Communist).

In Beacon Hill, 8.3 per cent of respondents said they were still undecided, while in Hillside the undecided rate was 10.3 per cent.

Voters questioned in the survey were also asked:

?Taking all factors into consideration, how do you rate the performance of the B.C. Liberal government so far:    good, fair, or poor??

In Victoria - Beacon Hill, 57.5 per cent of voters gave the government a ?poor? rating while 32.5 per cent felt its performance has been ?good? and 10 per cent considered it ?fair.?

In Victoria - Hillside, the ratings were 52 per cent ?poor?, 35.5 per cent ?good,? and 12.5 per cent ?fair?.

In the 2001 election, the results in the two Victoria ridings were the closest in the province. In Beacon Hill, Jeff Bray edged the NDP?s Carole James with 37.04 per cent of the vote to 36.90 per cent. Green candidate Walter Meyer zu Erpen placed third with 21.72 per cent.

In the Hillside riding, Liberal Sheila Orr also won by a whisker, with 37.71 per cent of the vote to 37.31 per cent for incumbent NDP MLA Steve Orcherton. Stuart Hertzog of the Green Party was third with 19.82 per cent.

Prior to the 2001 election, however, both Victoria seats were regarded as NDP strongholds. In the 1996 election, for example, Orcherton won Hillside with 53.32 per cent of the vote to 31.58 per cent for the Liberals? Orr. Gary Beyer of the now-defunct Progressive Democratic Alliance placed third with 5.65 per cent while Dan Willson of the Reform Party was fourth with 4.51 per cent and David Scott White of the Green Party fifth with 3.64 per cent.

In the Beacon Hill riding in 1996, New Democrat Gretchen Brewin won easily, obtaining 52.51 per cent of the vote to 33.52 per cent for Howard Markson of the B.C. Liberals, 4.80 per cent for Richard Fahl of the Progressive Democratic Alliance, and 4.43 per cent for Stephen DeMeulenaere of the Green Party.

The general trend indicated in the Victoria Street Newz survey in both Victoria ridings is similar to the trend shown in the provincial by-election held on October 28th, 2004, in Surrey - Panorama Ridge.

In that by-election, New Democrat Jagrup Brar won what had previously been a Liberal bastion. Brar obtained 53.59 per cent of the vote, compared to 19.91 per cent for the NDP in that riding in 2001.

The Liberals? by-election candidate Mary Polak received 33.35 per cent of the vote, compared to 58.94 per cent for the Liberals in the riding in 2001.

Green Party leader Adriane Carr, who ran personally in the by-election, got 8.37 per cent of the vote, compared to 8.83 per cent for the green Party in that riding in 2001.

All of the political parties are now busy gearing up for the next provincial election, which will be held on May 17th, 2005.

In Victoria - Beacon Hill, there will be a rematch between incumbent B.C. Liberal Jeff Bray and Carole James, who was chosen provincial leader of the NDP in November, 2003.

It is expected that Walter Meyer zu Erpen will again be the Green Party?s standard bearer in the riding.

Incumbent Liberal MLA Sheila Orr will be seeking re-election in Victoria - Hillside, but it is not yet known who her NDP opponent will be.

Ex-MLA Steve Orcherton is facing a stiff challenge for the NDP nomination from Rob Fleming, a two-term member of Victoria city council. The nomination meeting will be held early in the new year.

The Green Party will be contesting the seat again, but its candidate last time, Stuart Hertzog, has not yet announced whether he will be running.

Several smaller parties are also expected to field candidates in the two Victoria ridings. These may include the Marijuana Party, the Canadian Action Party, the B.C. Conservative Party and the Communist Party.

In addition, there will likely be a candidate in each riding representing a new ?middle-of-the-road? party, which Langford lawyer Tom Morino is trying to form by merging his B.C. Democratic Alliance with the Reform Party of B.C. and a few other smaller groups.

Although the B.C. Unity Party ran candidates in both Victoria ridings in 2001 and received a handful of votes in the Victoria Street Newz poll, its future remains unclear following the recent resignation of its leader, Chris Delaney.

A bit about Gordon Pollard:

Gordon Pollard, who conducted this poll for Victoria Street Newz, worked for 10 years as a journalist in B.C., Alberta, and Ontario before going overseas where he spent 20 years teaching in Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Zimbabwe, and Sri Lanka.

As a journalist, Gordon carried out many opinion surveys, including one of the most controversial ever conducted in B.C., during a 1976 provincial by-election in Vancouver East. That poll, predicting then NDP leader Dave Barrett would win with 71 percent of the vote, was published in BC Today, and was greeted with howls of derision.

Barrett won with 70.2 per cent of the vote.



Last Updated on Sunday, 24 April 2005 01:08

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