OTTAWA - A new poll suggests Prime Minister Stephen Harper is paying a price for underestimating opposition to his decision to suspend Parliament.
The Canadian Press Harris-Decima survey shows Harper's personal popularity has taken a big hit and his party's lead over the Liberals has been cut almost in half.
The number of Canadians with a favourable impression of the prime minister has dropped seven points since last November to 44 per cent; the ranks of those with an unfavourable impression have jumped seven points to 48 per cent.
Overall Conservative support is unchanged at 34 per cent, the Liberals are up three points to 30 per cent, while the NDP stand at 16 per cent and the Greens at nine per cent.
The telephone poll of just over 1,000 Canadians was conducted Jan. 7-10 and is considered accurate to within 3.1 percentage points 19 times out of 20.