On Saturday the Canadian Press released a poll showing that 40% of Liberal voters and 25% of NDP and Bloc voters were content with the performance thus far of the Conservatives. For some Conservatives this may seem like a big thing because with that kind of support coming in, there's a chance they could win the next election. However, I think it needs to be pointed out that the Conservatives haven't really done anything yet. This poll is essentially based on Harper flying to Afghanistan and keeping a death grip on the members of his party. I can't seem to find any real meaning behind this poll. Even the pollster, Bruce Anderson cautions that,
"the numbers don't mean that those Liberal, NDP and Bloc voters would automatically check off Conservative on their ballot if an election was held tomorrow."
It should also be mentioned that these numbers are mainly based on the Conservatives performance in the economic and international relations areas. The performance ratings drop significantly in the areas of the environment, child care and health care. And this poll was done prior to the Conservatives axing the Kyoto research programs and initiatives. Though that brings me right back to my point: What the hell are these performance scores based on?
The only guess I can really conjure up is that they are based on what the Conservatives will or might do with consideration given to what is perceived to be their traditional and strong areas are supposed to be. Couple this with the fact that, under the iron-fist of Harper, most MPs haven't been allowed to breath without permission and therefore no massive controversies have arisen. Between these two points I am not surprised that polls would show some growing approval for the Conservatives. Especially after all the turmoil the Liberals had in their last few years.
So what these polls really indicate is nothing at all, kind of. With no performance for people to really judge the Conservatives on, it is hard to give real consideration to performance rating. However, there are a couple things that should be noted. With the perception that the Conservatives are going to do well in certain areas, that means there are expectations to meet on the part of the Conservatives. Getting into a disagreement with the US may disappoint a lot of people fairly easily. On the other hand, having poor perception in areas such as the environment, child-care and health care could also be as tedious. It's already an indication that people aren't really trusting Harper to do the right thing in these areas and could be taken as an indication that what Harper has planned isn't meeting approval. So while this poll has no real meaning in terms of an election or a true rating of approval, there may be some meaning found for the Conservatives in regards to their plans.