Harper's Tories leaking voter support

Prime Minister Stephen Harper pauses after speaking during Question Period in the House of Commons...

Prime Minister Stephen Harper pauses after speaking during Question Period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa October 22, 2013. REUTERS/Chris Wattie

David Akin, Parliamentary Bureau Chief

, Last Updated: 7:01 PM ET

OTTAWA - More than one in four Canadians surveyed who voted Conservative in 2011 now believe the Harper government is on the wrong track, according to a new poll released exclusively to QMI Agency.

The poll by Abacus Data, taken before this week's developments over the Senate expense scandal, also shows that an increasing number of 2011 Conservative respondents are now looking approvingly at Justin Trudeau and the Liberals.

For example, Abacus found that when asked who they thought would make best prime minister, just 62% of respondents who voted for Harper in 2011 now believe he's the best choice for prime minister. Meanwhile, 15% of that same group now say Trudeau would be the best PM.

The Harper Conservatives are still seen by more respondents as the best party when it comes to managing the economy -- 28% -- though the Liberals are not far back at 23%.

On a range of yardsticks used by Abacus to measure how Canada's federal parties are doing, the Conservative at mid-term look significantly weaker than they did upon election.

Just 69% of respondents who voted for Harper in 2011 would do so again today, Abacus found. And of those 2011 Conservative respondents, 11% would now vote for Trudeau's Liberals while 15% now say they are undecided.

And as troubling as the new numbers may be for the Conservatives, they're even worse for Thomas Mulcair's New Democrats. The Official Opposition is seen as credible on management of the economy by just 13% of those surveyed while Mulcair is seen as best PM by just 12%.

Moreover, just two of every three people who voted for Jack Layton in 2011 are prepared to vote NDP now. And 17% of those former NDP respondents are now ready to vote Trudeau.

Abacus completed the online survey of 1,459 people, in French or English, between Oct 18-22. And while a margin of error cannot be calculated, Abacus weighted the survey sample by age, gender, region and education level according to the most recent census data. The pollster's method is widely used and, according to the industry association of which the pollster is a member, is capable of producing accurate results. More information is at abacusdata.ca.


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