A new Maru Public Opinion poll of 1,506 Canadian adults surveyed between Feb. 9-10 found that 29% of Canadians believe Trudeau has "acted like a prime minister should in the face of the protest." Only 17% of Canadians saw Trudeau as "strong in acting to stop the protests," while 53% said the prime minister has "looked weak in the face of threats to the country."
Hours before the start of the Freedom Convoy protest in Ottawa last month, Trudeau was reportedly transported to a "secret location" because of "security reasons."
In who to blame for the escalation of the protests, there were 46% who pointed the finger at the truckers and 31% at Trudeau. The poll said there were 44% who felt that Trudeau has "inflamed" the protests against vaccine mandates.
Based on his leadership or lack thereof during the trucker protests, a mere 16% of Canadians would "want to vote for him because of how he has dealt with the situation."
"The last time I’ve seen numbers even close to this were in the final days of Brian Mulroney. I think this could cost him his job," John Wright – executive vice-president of Maru Public Opinion and a 32-year industry veteran – told the Edmonton Journal.
The survey found that 64% of Canadians believe the country's democracy is "being threatened by a group of protesters and they must be stopped immediately." The same percentage of Canadians support using armed forces to clear out the trucks with heavy tow vehicles. There were 53% who would be in favor of law enforcement "forcefully" removing any truckers and their families, including the use of tear gas and other crowd-control munitions "even if it may cause injury or worse." There are 58% calling for trucker protesters to face jail sentences of up to two years.
Only 20% of Canadians "fully support" the trucker protests, while 24% endorse the truckers' cause but not the method of how they are carrying out their demonstrations. There are 56% of Canadians who don't support the Freedom Convoy protests in "any way, shape, or form and believe that we need to do everything we can to put an end to their activities."
Trudeau was bashed by liberal talk show host Bill Maher on Friday night for the way the prime minister denigrated the truckers.
"They don't believe in science, they're often misogynistic, often racist," Trudeau said of anti-vaccine mandate protesters in September. "They take up space, and with that we have to make a choice – in terms of a leader in a country – do we tolerate these people?"
Maher compared Trudeau's comments to Adolf Hitler.
Maher remarked, "'Tolerate these people?' Now you do sound like Hitler."