Extraordinary Support for Banning Big Money in Vancouver Politics

Almost three-in-five residents believe parties should not raise funds from corporations and unions at all. 

Vancouver, BC [May 10, 2018] – Residents of Vancouver are overwhelmingly in favour of the push to ban big money in municipal politics, a new Research Co. poll has found.

In the online survey of a representative sample of City of Vancouver residents, almost nine-in-ten respondents (87%) agree with the legislation enacted by the Government of British Columbia to ban corporate and union donations in local election campaigns, and establish a limit of $1,200 on an individual’s donations to a party and its candidates.

Sizeable majorities of residents across all demographics and party affiliations are in favour of the new guidelines, which came into effect in September 2017.

When introduced, the legislation that banned corporate and union donations in local election campaigns did not prevent municipal political parties from raising money from corporations and unions if those funds were used exclusively toward operational expenses, and not on an election campaign.

The Government of British Columbia announced a change to the Local Election Campaign Financing Act regulations on April 27, to ensure that union and corporate donations cannot be used to fund any expenses of elector organizations during the year of a general local election.

Almost three-in-five Vancouverites (59%) think the original law should “probably” or “definitely” change, and believe parties should not raise funds from corporations and unions at all.

Conversely, just over a quarter of Vancouverites (27%) believe the law should “probably” or “definitely” remain as originally tabled, and argue that parties should raise funds from corporations and unions for operational expenses.

It is important to note that support for modifying existing legislation is high among Vancouverites who voted for Vision Vancouver’s Gregor Robertson in the 2014 mayoral election (58%) and those who supported Kirk LaPointe of the Non-Partisan Association (NPA) in the same contest (61%).

“Vancouverites are decidedly happy with the ban on big money in municipal politics,” says Mario Canseco, President at Research Co. “And the spirit of the ban, when it comes to operational expenses, is shared by voters who cast ballots for the top two vote-getters in Vancouver’s last mayoral election.”

In a final question, four-in-five respondents (80%) voiced support for the recently approved zoning bylaw amendments that will allow grocery stores in Vancouver to sell alcoholic beverages.

According to the new guidelines, alcoholic beverages will not be in plain view of grocery store customers, who will have to go into a separate section of the store for their purchases.

Results are based on an online study conducted from April 28 to April 30, 2018, among 400 adults in the City of Vancouver. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region in the City of Vancouver. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is +/- 4.9 percentage points, nineteen times out of twenty.

Find our full data set here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:
Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.
[e] mario.canseco@researchco.ca


Photo Credit: Matthew Field.