"So why this abrupt shift in Conservative fortunes? In the absence of Parliament, we could speculate that it is merely a random survey error. But the pattern is far too pronounced and we can dismiss this hypothesis.
Perhaps the absence of the critical lens that Parliament provides to the public explains buoyed Conservative fortunes. Another factor is the continuing recovery of the economy and the juxtaposition of Canadian strength compared to the economic and fiscal woes of recent visitors from the G8.
A final interesting hypothesis is that Stephen Harper may now be assuming a symbolic as well as political role. It is interesting to note that in the absence of the representative head of state (Michaëlle Jean), it was Harper who greeted the Queen, rubbed shoulders with Obama and European Leaders, and basked in the positive glow surrounding Canada Day.
So just as the Olympic hockey victory lifted Harper’s fortunes, the cumulative effect of these events seems to have exerted a similarly positive effect. If indeed Harper is now becoming a proxy for national pride, this may make the challenge for Ignatieff even more formidable (as confidence in national direction continues to be strong)."