Aboriginal voters favour NDP: poll

Most surveys done before Doer quit


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OTTAWA -- Aboriginal voters in Manitoba appear to be smitten with the NDP.

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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 31/03/2010 (4743 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

OTTAWA — Aboriginal voters in Manitoba appear to be smitten with the NDP.

According to a Probe Research poll released to the Free Press on Tuesday, more than half of aboriginal voters in Manitoba would vote for the NDP provincially, and more than one-third would vote for the NDP federally.

The provincial Liberals are the choice of a slightly more than one in five aboriginal voters, and the provincial Tories the choice of less than one in six. Federally, one in three aboriginal voters back the Liberals, compared to one in four who back the Conservatives.

The poll results are based on telephone surveys of aboriginal people in Manitoba between June 2008 and September 2009. The provincial results are accurate within 4.3 percentage points. The federal results, based on a slightly smaller sample size, are accurate within 5.5 percentage points.

Probe President Scott MacKay notes the overall results are virtually the same as the results of a similar poll released by Probe in 2008.

"These are not fleeting opinions," he said.

The NDP is the most popular party provincially for aboriginal voters among men and woman, and across all ages and education and income levels. Federally, the Liberals nabbed first place among men, voters over age 55, voters with less than a high-school education and those earning more than $60,000 a year.

Last week, Probe released its quarterly survey of political voting intentions province-wide which showed the NDP at 42 per cent, the Conservatives at 39 per cent and the Liberals at 11 per cent.

MacKay noted the distinct difference in aboriginal voting intentions is a much stronger like for the NDP and much stronger dislike for the Conservatives than Manitobans as a whole.

These polls however were mostly taken before Gary Doer stepped down as premier. The latest provincial voting results were taken with new premier Greg Selinger at the helm.

The poll also shows a divide between First Nations and Metis voters. The former are more likely to back the NDP provincially (61 per cent) and Liberals and NDP federally (39 and 36 per cent respectively) and shun the Conservatives (eight per cent provincially, 18 per cent federally). Métis voters are still most likely to back the NDP but prefer the Conservatives to the Liberals at both levels.

Although more than 15 per cent of Manitobans are now aboriginal and the population is growing, because First Nations have very low turnout in provincial and federal elections, the impact on results is not as high as it could be.

MacKay said however, if the NDP were able to find a way to improve aboriginal voter turnout, it could have a significant impact on their results, particularly in certain ridings.

"If every aboriginal voter in Manitoba voted, it would increase the support for the NDP," he said.


Provincial voting intentions


All aboriginal voters

NDP 57

Liberal 21

Conservative 17

First Nations voters

NDP 61

Liberal 26

Conservative 8

Métis voters

NDP 52

Liberal 14

Conservative 29


Federal voting intentions


All aboriginal voters

NDP 36

Liberal 33

Conservative 24

Green 6

First Nations voters

NDP 36

Liberal 39

Conservative 18

Green 4

Métis voters

NDP 37

Liberal 25

Conservative 30

Green 7

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