Fredericton — Researchers at the University of New Brunswick have released information regarding a research project that included polling New Brunswickers on their political views.
Researchers Steven Moore, a doctor of sociology, and graduate student Kate Lowe worked tirelessly to better understand how New Brunswickers think, politically; for them, this data is like hitting the jackpot.
Polling took place from August 2013 until August 2014, leading up to the fall election. Data was gathered over the phone from around 5,000 residents during that time. Follow-up interviews were conducted with 25 select participants from all regions of the province.
“When we were calling these people and asking them about their values and who they normally vote for in elections, at certain points the participants seemed to be confused — especially following questions about the Conservative Party,” said Moore. What the follow-up interviews show is that many longtime Consevative Party supporters have been under the impression that this has less to do with politics, and more to do with competing brands of New Brunswick-made beer.
“When one interviewee said that he thought the ‘red Liberal crap’ was too hoppy, and that was why he always went with the ‘blue Conservative brand,’ we realized we had stumbled onto something fascinating,” said Lowe.
The Manatee wanted to explore this further, so our staff hit the streets to see whether people in Fredericton could back up this research.
Kyle Renouf, 24, told The Manatee that he’s been a longtime NDP supporter and believes he knows his fair share about New Brunswick politics. “Whenever I talk to people who supported the last government, they never seem to talk about policies or how MLAs acted in the legislature — all they seem to be concerned with is the Conservatives’ relationship with NB Liquor, who the next president of the company is going to be, and whether or not it will affect the overall flavour of the brand.”
“After hearing this nonsense about beer, everything’s starting to make sense,” said Renouf.
Craig Olmstead,62, had this to say: “Them folks at the Liberals keep tryin’ ta push their Irish Red on us folks who just like to keep things the [expletive] way she goes. My father told me to always trust the blue and [expletive] that’s what I plan to do.”