Justin Trudeau's Liberals take a big drop in new poll

Liberal leader Justin Trudeau speaks during Question Period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa October 8, 2014. REUTERS/Chris Wattie (CANADA - Tags: POLITICS)

A new opinion poll is causing a bit of a stir.

The Abacus Data poll, released on Monday afternoon, suggests that the federal Liberals have taken a six point dip since last month.

The respected pollsters still have Justin Trudeau’s party in the lead with 32 per cent support, but now have the Tories on their heels with 30 per cent and the NDP not far behind at 25 per cent support.

Abacus’ David Coletto says the ”road for the Liberals may not be as smooth as appeared last month.”

"For the first time in our tracking this year," Coletto wrote, “we have seen some movement. Liberal support is down, NDP and Green support has ticked up, while Conservative support is holding at 30 per cent.”

[ Related: One year until the next election: what to expect ]

A lot of people dismiss mid-term opinion polls arguing that they don’t provide much value months or even years before an election.

But this latest poll is interesting for a couple of reasons.

It’s one of the first major polls conducted after the parliamentary debate about Canada’s mission in Iraq. It’s also the first poll after Trudeau’s latest gaffe when, during a Q&A, he inappropriately said that Canada can do better than “trying to whip out our CF-18’s” and show the international community “how big they are.”

This poll might just give us a glimpse of how much voter support a Justin Trudeau-gaffe can cost his Liberal party — at least in the short term.

[ Related: Latest Moody’s economic report should give Harper government a much-needed boost ]

The gaffe, and Trudeau’s subsequent inability to articulate his party’s position to not send CF-18s to join the American led coalition against ISIS generated a lot of negative media.

In fact, it was probably the first time since becoming leader that he’s faced widespread criticism from Canada’s mainstream political commentators.

"Justin Trudeau’s opponents constantly try to brand him as unready for office, and the Liberal Leader keeps proving them wrong. Until lately, that is. Suddenly we’ve been hit with the temptation to say, Quiet, Justin. The adults are talking,” the Globe and Mail editorial board wrote.

Between [the whip out] comment, his reference in the Commons to the CF-18s as “a few aging warplanes” and his party’s weakly reasoned argument against a combat role for Canada in Iraq and Syria, Mr. Trudeau has performed poorly on the biggest file to cross his desk since becoming party leader.”

And, predictably, the Tories have jumped into the fray pushing graphics of these quotes on social media and have even produced a new attack using them.

"The prime minister of Canada it’s a serious job that requires a serious leader. And there’s nothing more serious than protecting Canada and Canadians. But for Justin Trudeau, it’s a joke,” notes a female voice over in the ad to be released later this week.

"He isn’t ready for the big stage.

"Justin Trudeau. He’s just not up to the job."

For his part, Trudeau seems. to recognize that he needs to choose his words a little more wisely.

"I do have to improve in my capacity to not give ammunition to those people who disagree with me," Trudeau told the Ottawa Citizen last week.

"To distract from the message that I’m putting out and to learn to find that right balance between being myself and getting the right message across."

Now he knows or at least he should that an inappropriate joke and wishy washy policy directives can seriously hurt his chances of being Canada’s next prime minister.

Justin Trudeau may not be the Teflon man of Canadian politics anymore.

Are you a politics junkie?
Follow @PoliticalPoints on Twitter!