Major crisis situations usually give a boost to the approval ratings of politicians. Most notable is Ontario’s, Doug Ford. He has jumped a positive 40 points in approval ratings. Past polls show this is true for almost every political leader in Canada, except for Jason Kenney. According to Think HQ, Kenney got a “quite modest” 7 point COVID bump but “rather short-lived.”
A very recent survey from Calgary based Think HQ used the typical unscientific internet panel sources of 1,204 Albertans for data collection. Edmonton and the north appear to be under-represented compared to Calgary, Central, and South. If that is the case the data is also likely skewed to be more “UCP-friendly” based on the last Provincial election results. That said, the findings are still pretty interesting.
A PROVINCE DEEPLY DIVIDED
When it comes to the leadership of Kenney and Notley, there is no doubt, the province is divided. 50% disapprove and 48% Kenney’s approval performance and 46% approve and 49% disapprove Notley. Both have a small minus net approval rating and their support bases are “mirror opposites.” Kenney’s support comes from older, less educated, lower-income, males. Notley is more popular with women, under 35 and better-educated Albertans.
Kenney has an impressive 71% rural support but Edmonton remains “hostile ground for the Premier where only 36% are positive about him. When it comes to Kenney’s other stronghold of Calgary, they are nor amused, only 48% give him a positive approval rating. and very conservative Southern Alberta isn’t much more supportive at 50%.
Notley “owns Edmonton” with 61% positive approval but Rural Alberta is decidedly hostile at 23% approval. Calgary is 46% approval for Notley, only 2 points behind Kenney. This has to be disconcerting for the UCP.
The “also-ran” party leaders are an unknown and untold story. David Khan of the Liberals is 19% approve, 41% disapprove and 40% Unsure. The really dark-horse Alberta party leader Jacquie Fenske is 63% Unsure, 25% disapprove, and 12% Approve.
We are currently a two-party state, deeply divided geographically between urban and rural and demographics. We have no clear preference between the Tribal options being offered by the NDP or UCP. That takes us to the question of trust in government as a core issue for Albertans.
Between April and June 2020 the hot-button issues for Albertans have all been declining. “Having a government-citizen can trust” is different, it is now a growing concern. Very Concerned Albertans about trust in their government are up 5 points to 58%. It comes in third place with a total of 82%. when you add in Somewhat Concerned citizens.
ECONOMY AND UNEMPLOYMENT TOP OF MIND
The economy is still the number 1 issue but 7% fewer Albertans are in the Very Concerned category. Add in the Somewhat Concerned and 94% of us are anxious about the economy. When it comes to unemployment 11% fewer of us are Very Concerned, down to 60% but add in the 31% who are Somewhat Concerned and 91% of us say unemployment is the #2 priority issue for Albertans.
A worrisome outcome is around concern about the Coronavirus. Very Concerned is down 23% to 35% overall. Somewhat Concerned is 38% making a total of 73% overall concerned and putting it at 4th priority, behind Trust in Government.
DO YOU TRUST *PREMIER KENNEY?
So where do you rank *Premier Kenney on your Trust Barometer?
1= Cataclysmic Distrust where he is Aggressive, Threatening, Attacking and Betraying
2= Intense Distrust where he is Deceptive, Manipulative and Lying
3= Strong Distrust where you question his Judgment, Negativity, and Distractions
4= Fuzzy Distrust where you are Confused, Doubtful, Anxious and Uncertain because of him
5= Neutral Trust where you see him as Transactional and trying to be Fair
6= Understood Trust where you believe he is Listening, Empathetic and Fair to you
7= Safe Trust where you see him as Honourable, to be Respected and you feel Secure under him
8= Confident Trust where you feel Loyalty, and Unity of Purpose in a Win-Win Relationship
9=Aligned Trust where you see him as an aligned Partner who is Sharing Risk-Rewards with you
10= Energized Trust where you are co-creating, innovating and creating synergies with him,
Where do you place Jason Kenney in your level of Trust?