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Most Canadians think gov’t is doing poorly

31 December 2013 11:41

342921_Stephen-Harper

A newly-released poll shows that a majority of Canadians rate the performance of Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s government as poor.

The survey released on Monday showed that 56 percent of Canadians rate the Conservative government’s performance for 2013 as “somewhat poor” or “very poor.”

The figures come from the annual “Mood of Canada” poll, which was conducted by Nanos Research and the Institute for Research on Public Policy (IRPP).

The poll also showed that a record number of Canadians, 55 percent, believe the government is headed in the wrong direction. In its seven-year history, the survey has never shown the figure to be higher than 38 percent.

Furthermore, figures showed that 45 percent of those surveyed believe Canada’s reputation was “not improved” internationally this year, compared to eight percent saying the same in 2012.

This comes as the Canadian government has been rocked by a Senate spending scandal that triggered a police investigation and raised questions about the conduct of those working in Harper’s own office.

Pollster Nik Nanos said the scandal differs from previous ones as it directly involves Harper, who has been forced to personally defend his handling of the issue.

The Senate scandal “has had a significant spillover effect in how people are viewing the government writ-large,” said Nanos.

The scandal broke out earlier this year after an audit showed that three senators had filed ineligible claims, as well as a secret payment of 90,000 Canadian dollars from Harper’s then chief of staff to lawmaker Mike Duffy to cover his expense repayments.

Duffy and two other lawmakers Pamela Wallin and Patrick Brazeau, involved in the scandal, have since then been suspended from the senate with no pay for two years.

Another recent poll, published also by Nanos in November, showed that only 11 percent of Canadians found Harper to be credible following the scandal and a majority 53 percent described him as not credible.

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