Stephen Harper will be remembered as an average or better prime minister by most Canadians, significantly more than the 31.9 per cent who voted for the Conservative Party in the last election, according to a new poll released Friday.
During a lengthy and sometimes heated campaign, the New Democrats urged voters to back Tom Mulcair to “stop Harper” once and for all.
The Liberals and Justin Trudeau won a majority government Oct. 19 based on a campaign that promised to deliver “real change” after nine years of Tory rule marked by “negative, divisive politics.”
But for all the heated rhetoric about the Conservative prime minister, Canadians say he will leave office with an average or better legacy, according to the Angus Reid Institute poll.
“Canadians are not of the view that Stephen Harper was necessarily the worst prime minister, or a terrible prime minister,” said Shachi Kurl, senior vice-president at the pollster.
While most Liberal and NDP voters think Harper was “not great,” he still has a strong base of Conservative supporters to help shore up his legacy, she said.
“There remain a significant segment of Canadians who stay right-of-centre and who would profess value for a lot of the policies that we saw during the Harper years,” including tax-cutting measures and the creation of the tax-free savings account, Kurl said.