Conservatives gain further ground: poll

Mon Apr 11, 2011 5:50pm EDT
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TORONTO (Reuters) - The ruling Conservative Party extended its lead over the Liberals to 11 points in an opinion poll released on Monday, driving deeper into territory that could win them a majority in the May 2 federal election.

The Nanos Research tracking poll of results over three days of surveys put support for the Conservatives at 41.2 percent, up from 39.5 percent in a Sunday poll.

Support for the main opposition Liberals was at 30.4 percent, down from 31.6 percent, while the left-leaning New Democratic Party rose to 15.2 percent from 14.7 percent.

Under Canada's first-past-the-post electoral system, a party needs around 40 percent of the vote to win a majority of the 308 seats in the House of Commons.

The past two governments have been Conservative minorities, requiring the Tories to get support from at least one other party to maintain power. The government was defeated in a non-confidence motion on March 25.

The daily tracking figures are based on a three-day rolling telephone sample of 982 decided voters and is considered accurate within a range of 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

Results from the last three days of polling are as follows:

Poll Release Date April 11 April 10 April 9 Conservatives 41.2 39.5 40.5 Liberals 30.4 31.6 31.7

NDP 15.2 14.7 13.2 Bloc Quebecois 7.8 8.1 9.2 Greens 4.6 4.8 4.0

(Reporting by Pav Jordan and Euan Rocha)

<p>Conservative leader and Prime Minister Stephen Harper speaks during a campaign rally in Chicoutimi, Quebec April 10, 2011. REUTERS/Chris Wattie</p>