National Newswatch

MONTREAL — The Coalition Avenir Quebec, which is currently third in terms of seats in the national assembly, had a healthy lead over its main political opponents four months before the provincial election, suggests a new opinion poll.

The Leger/LCN survey indicated the Coalition had the support of 37 per cent of respondents, compared with 28 per cent for the governing Liberals and 19 per cent for the Parti Quebecois.

Quebec solidaire stood at nine per cent, while seven per cent of respondents were undecided.

Despite the numbers, Coalition Leader Francois Legault told reporters Wednesday he is taking nothing for granted.

"I don't comment on polls," he said. "The confidence of Quebecers has to be earned and I'll be working up until the Oct. 1 election date to gain that confidence."

Conducted May 31-June 10, the poll surveyed 3,234 Quebecers, a number significantly higher than Leger's usual political poll sample.

Respondents completed the poll online and the sample is non-probabilistic, but Leger says a similar, probabilistic poll of 3,234 people would have a margin of error of 1.7 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

PQ Leader Jean-Francois Lisee said the Coalition is being seen currently as the party of change, but that it has peaked too early.

Lisee said once Quebecers take a good look at Legault's party during the election campaign, they'll switch to his.

"On education, health care, energy and language rights ... we are certain that with each of those subjects, their position is not credible and ours is," the PQ leader said.

Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois, a member of the legislature for Quebec solidaire, said the difference between the Liberals the Coalition is minimal.

"We can't just change the label of the political party, the brand," he said. "Between the Liberals and Coalition, when it comes to significant differences, there are none."

In the 2014 general election, the Liberals garnered 41.5 per cent support, the PQ 25.4 per cent and the Coalition 23 per cent.



The Canadian Press

Click here for more political news headlines