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What Canadians Think of Justin Trudeau for 8 Years: Poll

Canadians are divided in their opinions of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, according to a new national poll, with two in five Canadians saying they approve of the prime minister, while just over half said they disagree.

A study led by Angus Reid sought to create a picture of long-term trends in approval ratings to see how Trudeau compares to his predecessors in their eighth year in office – and the results are largely favourable, despite a percentage high of disapproval.

At 40% approval, Trudeau has a higher approval rating than three former prime ministers at similar stages in their careers, with only Jean Chrétien surpassing him.

The current approval rating comes from a poll of approximately 1,600 Canadian adults in early May.

Trudeau’s approval rating after eight years is four points higher than former prime minister Stephen Harper, as well as eight points higher than his father Pierre Elliot Trudeau.

Brian Mulroney won the approval of only 12% of those polled eight years into his term as prime minister. Mulroney resigned as prime minister the following year, before his party was decimated in the 1993 federal election.

However, with 55% of respondents saying they disapprove of Justin Trudeau, and 40% selecting “strongly disapprove”, it is clear that Canadians are far from united in their opinions of Trudeau.

Since the 1970s, nearly every prime minister had a higher percentage of Canadians saying they disapproved of them than those who said they approved of them, according to this data.

The exception is Chretien, who had an approval rating of 54 percent in December 2001, with 42 percent of Canadians saying they disapproved of him.


Angus Reid noted that several events this spring may have impacted Trudeau’s approval rating, such as “the opening of a foreign election interference investigation, the $160,000 vacation review in Jamaica, a divisive new budget forecast and the leak of an admission that Canada will likely never meet its NATO obligations.

Nevertheless, opinions on the current prime minister have remained within a few points of 40% since last spring, with the smallest drop over the past year being 37% in March.

In February 2020 – a month that saw massive nationwide protests sparked by Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs challenging the construction of a pipeline on their lands and the novel coronavirus beginning to gather pace in Canada – the rate Trudeau’s approval rating was 33%, according to the study, with a disapproval rating of 64%.

However, by May 2020, he had achieved a 55% approval rating, the highest he had received, according to Angus Reid data, between February 2020 and May 2023.


Broken down by political party, nearly 90% of former Conservative Party voters said they disapproved of Trudeau, with 81% saying they “strongly” disapproved.

The majority of Liberal Party voters – 80% – approve of Trudeau, with 25% saying they “strongly approve of him”. New Democrat voters have the second highest number of those who approve of Trudeau, at 53%, although half of the 43% who disapprove do so strongly. One in four Bloc Québécois voters approve of Trudeau, while 68% disapprove.

Trudeau’s approval rating among women has been one of the most consistent aspects of his approval over the years, according to Angus Reid. Women over 55 have consistently had the highest percentage of Trudeau’s approval compared to other age groups, with Trudeau’s approval rating reaching 48% when only women over 55 are counted .

Since September 2022, Trudeau has seen a decline in approval among women aged 35 to 54, earning an approval rating of 37% from that group in May 2023, down from 45% in September.

Trudeau’s approval ratings have long been lower among men in general, with the approval rating of men aged 18-34 in particular showing many ups and downs since the start of 2021. Currently, this group of age gives Trudeau an approval rating of 38%. while 36% of men aged 55 and over approve of Trudeau and 34% of men aged 35-54.


The Angus Reid Institute conducted an online survey May 8-10, 2023 with a representative random sample of 1,603 adult Canadian Angus Reid Forum members. For comparison purposes only, a probability sample of this size would have a margin of error of +/- 2 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding. The survey was self-commissioned and paid for by ARI.

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