Two public opinion polls released on Thursday show that Canadians are not happy about the Prime Minister’s decision to prorogue Parliament until March 3rd.
According to the poll conducted by EKOS Research Associates, 67% of Canadians are aware of the decision to prorogue Parliament (including 52% “clearly aware”), and those who are aware of it disapprove of the decision by a margin of nearly two to one. Similarly, nearly two-thirds of Canadians agree that “The elected House of Parliament is the proper place to conduct the business of the nation and suspending Parliament is antidemocratic.”
The second poll, conducted by Angus Reid, showed similar results, with 53% of Canadians disagreeing with the decision to prorogue and only 19% supporting it (28% not sure).
The Angus Reid poll also shows that 38% think prorogation was invoked to curtail inquiry into the treatment of Afghan detainees, while 23% accept the government claim that prorogation is necessary to “recalibrate, consult and deliver the next stage of its economic plan” (a further 39% responded “neither” or “not sure”).
The EKOS poll also collected some opinions on the matter of consultation. According to that poll, 37% of Canadians—or at least 37% of participants who responded with an answer—are of the opinion that “by shutting down Parliament, Stephen Harper can consult directly with Canadians in preparation for the next federal budget,” while 63% consider the decision antidemocratic.