Support for Alberta parties unchanged since Jason Kenney elected PC leader: poll

Support for the Progressive Conservatives in Alberta hasn't budged since Jason Kenney was elected leader of the party, according to a recent poll.

Among decided and leaning voters, 29 per cent would cast their ballots for the PCs if an election were held immediately, according to the telephone survey, which was commissioned by Postmedia and conducted April 11 and 12 by Mainstreet Research.

That's the same level of support in a similar poll from February, when Ric McIver was the interim PC leader.

Support for the Wildrose was down one percentage point to 37 per cent in the April survey, while NDP support rose one point to 24 per cent.

"All numbers are essentially within the margin of error from our last check-up on the Alberta horse race," said Mainstreet president Quito Maggi.

Mainstreet's polling method includes both a party's name and its leader in the questions asked of survey respondents and this is the first poll it has done with Jason Kenney named as the PC leader.

Changes in Calgary

While the Alberta-wide numbers were basically unchanged, there we some differences among Calgary voters since Kenney handily won the PC leadership in March.

"The movement that we've seen is mainly beneficial for the NDP," Maggi said.

The PCs fell to 33 per cent support in Calgary in April, down from 38 per cent in February.

NDP support in the city was up one percentage point to 27 per cent while Wildrose support rose two points to 24 per cent. Both increases are within the survey's margin of error.

In Edmonton, any variation in party support was also within the margin of error, with the NDP up two points to 45 per cent, the Wildrose unchanged at 26 per cent and the PCs up one point to 21 per cent.

Outside of the province's two largest cities, the Wildrose was down one point to 47 per cent, the PCs were up three points to 30 per cent and the NDP was unchanged at 16 per cent between February and April.

The Liberals and the Alberta Party continue polling in single digits.

Polling method details

The poll was commissioned by Postmedia, the company that owns the Calgary Herald, Calgary Sun, Edmonton Journal and Edmonton Sun.

Mainstreet surveyed a random sample of 2,421 Albertans using interactive voice response (IVR) technology.

The automated survey was conducted over both cellphones and landlines and Mainstreet then weighted the responses based on demographic information from the 2011 census.

For comparison purposes only, a random sample of this size would yield a margin of error of plus or minus two percentage points, 19 times out of 20, for the province-wide results.

For the results specific to Calgary and Edmonton, the error margin would be higher: 3.5 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

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