Canada Conservatives see poll lead slip slightly

* Conservatives more than six points ahead of rivals

* Poll suggests party could not create stable government

* Election widely expected in first half of next year

OTTAWA, Oct 28 (BestGrowthStock) – Canada’s governing Conservatives
are more than six points ahead of their closest rivals but
would have trouble creating a stable government if an election
were held now, according to a poll released on Thursday.

The regular Ekos survey for the Canadian Broadcasting Corp
put public support for the Conservatives at 33.9 percent, down
from 34.4 percent in a poll done by the same firm two weeks
ago. The main opposition Liberal Party remained steady at 27.8
percent.

Many political observers — not to mention some officials
in the office of Prime Minister Stephen Harper — expect the
government to be brought down over its next budget, in February
or March 2011.

The Conservatives, in power since early 2006, only have a
minority of seats in the House of Commons and need the support
of opposition legislators to pass budgets and survive
confidence motions.

Under Canada’s first-past-the-post electoral system, a
party needs around 36 percent of the vote to create a stable
minority government.

Although the Ekos poll indicates the Conservatives have
weathered a series of political stumbles over the last few
months, a full 53.1 percent of those surveyed felt the
government was heading in the wrong direction.

A string of polls by different firms over the last 18
months shows voters have little enthusiasm for either Harper or
Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff.

The Ekos automated telephone survey of 1,140 adults was
conducted between Oct. 20 and 26 and is considered accurate to
within 2.9 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.
(Reporting by David Ljunggren; editing by Peter Galloway)

Canada Conservatives see poll lead slip slightly