The poll results showed that the ruling Tories and the NDP are in a statistical tie for the top spot with those asked and the leaders of the two parties are running neck and neck when it comes to popularity. The result for the government is nothing that shouldn’t have been expected.
Since Kathy Dunderdale took over from Danny Williams, support for the party has spiraled steadily downward.
Dunderdale did lead her troops to a solid victory in the last provincial general election but she seems to have steadily fallen out of favour with voters since.
The battle against the expected deficit is adding to that poor image for the premier and her government.
And that battle is just getting going.
This province has gone from million dollar surpluses to a projected billion dollar deficit in a couple of years.
The government knew this day would come but still they hired more and more civil servants and added programs instead of preparing for the downturn.
That isn’t sitting well with the people of this province who thought better days were upon us after decades of high taxes and poor services.
The Tories have one thing on their side ... and that’s time.
The next general election is set for 2015 and the political and fiscal landscape could be much different — maybe improved — by then. The provincial government may have some spare oil money to spend and make voters forget the ongoing cost cutting.
They wouldn’t be the first government to improve their image with the electorate by using their own money.
It’s a time-honoured tradition in Newfoundland and Labrador.