(Ottawa) On the first day of the Republican Party's nomination race, a poll shows a majority of Canadians fear the economic, political and military consequences of a Donald Trump victory in November's presidential election.
Published at 1:25 am. Updated at 5:00 am.
According to a survey conducted by the Angus Reid Institute among 1,510 respondents from January 9th to 11th, fear of the billionaire businessman's return is even more pronounced in Quebec than in the rest of the country.
Such is the concern that about two-thirds of Canadians (64%) believe American democracy may not survive four more years of Donald Trump in power. Only 28% of respondents disagree with this statement, while 8% say they have no opinion.
At the same time, almost half of Canadians (49%) believe the United States is on its way to sinking into an authoritarian regime. Only 26% have the opposite opinion and a quarter of respondents say they don't know.
No wonder, then, that a significant portion of Canadians (64%) believe that the re-election of Democratic President Joe Biden would be the best scenario for the overall health of Canada-U.S. relations.
In Quebec, the proportion of people who believe a Biden victory would be beneficial to Canada-U.S. relations in all respects rises to 72%.
Canceled Keystone XL project impacts Western Canada
However, this feeling is less pronounced in Alberta (47%) and Saskatchewan (47%). In these two western provinces, people seem to resent President Joe Biden, who, in the first days of his term in office, canceled the construction project of the Keystone XL oil pipeline, which would stretch almost 1,900 km and connect the town of Hardisty, in near Edmonton, to Steele City, Nebraska.
INFOGRAPHICS THE PRESS
The fact is that a majority of Canadians believe a Biden victory would be better for global peace and security (60%), the maintenance of military agreements between Canada and the United States (57%) and the health of the Canadian economy ( 53%). Beliefs are less pronounced when it comes to security along the Canada-US border (48%) or even Canada's reputation on the international stage (48%) if Joe Biden is re-elected. But in the eyes of Canadians, his rating is better than Donald Trump's on all fronts.
PHOTO EVAN VUCCI, ASSOCIATED PRESS
US President Joe Biden in Philadelphia on Monday
Contacted by La Presse, Angus Reid Institute President Sachi Kurl confirmed that these results show beyond a shadow of a doubt that Canadians fear a return of Donald Trump to power. If in 2016 several of them believed that the Republican candidate would never do half of what he said, this is not the case in 2024.
At the time, it was believed that he didn't really believe what he was saying. But today, after watching Trump's first term, Canadians are fully aware of what he is capable of.
Sachi Kurl, President of the Angus Reid Institute
“Canadians are deeply concerned about the future of democracy in the United States if Donald Trump wins. They do not believe that American institutions are strong enough to withstand another Donald Trump presidency. It's not nothing. And that also extends to the electoral system,” she emphasized.
Trump appeals to part of the conservative electorate
Ms. Kurl also noted that by conducting this poll, Donald Trump was able to mobilize part of the conservative electorate in Canada. “Right-wing voters tend to be comfortable with the possibility of another Trump administration,” she noted.
Many Canadians also fear for the future of Canada's most important trading partner if Trump wins. In their opinion, the United States will suffer even more. In fact, three in five people (62%) think America will be “much worse off” if Trump wins the 2024 presidential election. But only one in five (22%) disagree, arguing that the situation in the United States will improve if the former president returns to power.
This research also shows that Joe Biden, who made an official visit to Ottawa in March 2023, is not a particularly inspiring candidate for Canadians. In fact, 34% of Canadians believe it would be better for the United States if he wins, and 28% believe the opposite, while 33% support the idea that it will have no impact.