These polls are coming out fast and furious it seems, with Abacus Data the latest to release new poll results - I suspect they're moving to a monthly schedule. Sadly though, Abacus doesn't do much else in terms of questions asked in their polls, like Trudeau Polling, so we don't get the chance to dream about a Trudeau majority this time.
Abacus Data (Federal - December 7th-8th, 2012)
Conservative: 34% (-2%) - 144 seats (-25 seats)
New Democratic: 32% (+3%) - 126 seats (+44 seats)
Liberal Party: 22% (=) - 62 seats (+12 seats)
Bloc Québécois (QC Only): 25% (-6%) - 5 seats (-31 seats)
Green Party: 6% (=) - 1 seat (=)
Compared to Abacus' last poll out in mid-November, the NDP have gotten a big boost - mostly because of a major increase in Quebec, and a major drop for the Bloc and Liberals in the same province. In November, the Bloc lead with 31% to the NDP's 30% and the Liberal's 21% - now the NDP lead with 39%, to the Bloc's 25% and the Liberal's 16%, with the Conservatives third at 17%. The Dippers also had increases in the Prairies, BC, and a small bump in Ontario.
The Conservative drop seems to come mainly from Ontario (38% now, 43% in Nov.), though they posted losses in the Prairies and BC as well.
The Liberals, despite dropping to fourth again in Quebec, jumped up 4% in Ontario to 27%, and up significantly in Atlantic Canada to 45%. Hence overall, they come out somewhat the same as before - but with more seats.
Abacus also does some approval/disapproval things that I'll glance over quickly:
Harper Gov't Right/Wrong Direction: 42% "Right"/43% "Wrong"
Harper Gov't Approval/Disapproval: 37%/47%
Harper Favourable/Unfavourable: 35%/46%
Mulcair Favourable/Unfavourable: 33%/24%
I found these particular numbers interesting because it speaks volumes about what Thomas Mulcair's problem is. While he may have a net-positive favourable/unfavourable rating, Harper actually has more people giving him favourable responses than Mulcair does, even if his unfavourables are nearing 50%.
Its the difference between being a polarizing figure, like Harper is, and being someone little known (or cared about), like Mulcair is. Sure, a hell of a lot more people may dislike Harper, but more also like him as well.
Same with general approval/disapproval of the Harper Gov't. While 47% disapprove of the government, a significant 37% approve of it. That is above what Harper managed in this poll, and only 2% below the popular vote his party earned in May 2011. The right/wrong direction question is even closer.
Of course, when you get into the details, its a very polarized electorate, especially with the Conservatives vs. NDP. Most Liberals disapprove of the Harper regime as well, but a significant 26% say they actually approve of the government.
That would be a major caveat in any "co-operation" or merger proposal for Liberals, wouldn't it. In my own riding of Burlington, where the Conservatives won with over 50% of the votes, if over 25% of Liberals decided that they didn't like the options being present - either a merged party, or a non-Liberal candidate as the "Opposition candidate" - and decided to either switch their votes, or not vote at all, then that gives Mike Wallace more vote padding to survive on. I think it would make a riding like mine virtually unwinnable, when it most certainly is.