Voter satisfaction with McNeil government at lowest level since Liberals came to power

  • Six in ten Nova Scotians dissatisfied with the performance of the Liberal government.
  • PCs remain statistically tied with Liberals in decided voter support.
  • NS Greens reach double digits in voter support for first time.

HALIFAX, June 13, 2019: Satisfaction with the performance of Nova Scotia’s Liberal government has dropped 6 points over the past three months, reaching its lowest level since the Liberals first came to power under Premier Stephen McNeil in 2013, according to the latest survey by Narrative Research.

Voter satisfaction with the McNeil government now sits at 35% (down from 41% in February 2019 and 46% in November 2018), while nearly six in ten Nova Scotians, 56%, are dissatisfied (up from 53% in February and 48% in November). The current satisfaction rating is two points lower than the low point recorded under the previous government of NDP Premier Darrell Dexter, which received a 37% satisfaction rating in August, 2012.

Meanwhile, the provincial Liberals remain in a statistical tie with the Nova Scotia Progressive Conservatives in terms of voter support. The PCs have the support of 33% of decided voters (compared with 34% in February and 31% in November), while the Liberals are backed by 31% of decided voters (down from 37% and 38%). The New Democrats are supported by 21% (compared with 24% in each of the previous two quarters), and the Green Party has the backing of 13% (up from 5% and 6%) – the first time provincial Green support has reached double digits in Nova Scotia.

Thirty-one percent of voters are undecided, 4% refuse to state their preference and 6% say they do not plan to vote.

On the question of leadership, Liberal leader Stephen McNeil remains the preferred choice of Nova Scotians, with 24% naming him as their choice for premier (compared to 26% in February and 28% in November). PC leader Tim Houston is preferred by 20% (compared to 24% and 22%), NDP leader Gary Burrill is the choice of 16% (compared to 15% and 18%), Green leader Thomas Trappenberg is supported by 10% (up from 4% and 5%) and Atlantic Party leader Ryan Smyth is preferred by 2% (compared to 1% in each of the past two quarters).

Two in ten Nova Scotians, 22%, cannot identify who they would prefer to see as premier, while 5% support none of the party leaders.

These results are part of Narrative Research’sAtlantic Quarterly®, an independent, quarterly telephone survey of Atlantic Canadians, and are based on a sample of 800 adult Nova Scotians, conducted from May 1 to 23, 2019,with overall results accurate to within ± 3.5 percentage points, 95 out of 100 times. 

Narrative Research,, is one of Canada’s leading public opinion and market research companies. Founded in 1978 as Corporate Research Associates, Narrative Research is dedicated to providing clients with state-of-the-art research and strategic consulting services. Follow us on Twitter at @EveryNarrative.


For more information, please contact:
Margaret Chapman, COO and Partner, Narrative Research,
at (902) 493-3834,

Narrative Research Atlantic Quarterly®– May 2019
Nova Scotia Political Results

Sample: 800 Nova Scotians (18 years plus)
Interview Dates: May 1-23, 2019
Overall Margin of Sampling Error: ± 3.5 percentage points (95% confidence level);
Percentages may not equal 100 percent due to rounding