A new INNOVATIVE poll shows that while the controversy surrounding China’s alleged interference in Canada’s 2019 and 2021 elections has not yet captured the attention of most Canadians, early signs suggest that it is damaging the Liberals’ reputation and could potentially become more significant.
A March poll by INNOVATIVE surveyed 2,933 Canadians, covering their level of awareness of the controversy, initial reaction, and potential impact on their future voting behavior. The results are weighted to 2,000 by age, gender, region, and party identification to ensure that the overall sample’s composition reflects that of the actual population according to Census data. For more information on the survey’s methodology, please refer to the report.
Over half of the respondents have low engagement with the issue, with only 10% following very closely. The level of interest in the controversy has remained constant over the two-week survey period.
The allegation sparks anger among most people. Despite the current low engagement with the issue, 64% say that the allegation leaves them feeling angry. These results suggest that attention could grow, as people feel the need to pay attention before they engage with an issue.
The survey also shows that Canadians assume the worst, with 58% believing that the interference may have had at least some impact on the election outcome.
There are early signs that the issue is damaging the Liberals. 43% disapprove of the way Justin Trudeau has handled the issue since it emerged. While Conservatives are more likely to be angry and concerned, 1-in-3 Liberal identifiers agree that the Prime Minister has been aware of China’s election interference for some time but chose not to take action because his party benefited from that interference.