Saturday, January 26, 2013

UPDATED: Forum Ontario Poll: 35% NDP, 32% PC, 27% OLP

**UPDATED VERSION** - I originally had the projections wrong for this post, giving the NDP 51 seats, PCs 34, and Liberals 22. This was due to regionals in the GTA which I originally had the change, but my changes messed it up, thus had to change again. The NDP end up with a minority legislature in this projection still and there isn't too much change overall.

And thus, we see the first provincial Ontario poll to put the New Democrats first since... well, for a very long time.

Forum Research's newest monthly poll is out and gives a good boost to our provincial Dippers, putting a smile for sure on Andrea Horwath's face, and a frown on Tim Hudak's. The Ontario Liberals, once again in third, are too busy to care right now. Well, everyone except this Ontario Liberal....

Forum Research (Ontario Provincial - January 23-24, 2013)
New Democratic: 35% (+4%) - 51 seats 44 seats (+14 seats)
Prog. Conservative: 32% (-1%) - 34 seats (-20 seats)
Ontario Liberal: 27% (=) - 22 seats 29 seats (+6 seats)
Green Party: 5% (-3%)

At 35% support the NDP do pretty well for themselves, definitely up from the last Forum poll out in December, though not quite enough for a majority. The key to this is in the GTA; though on the face of it the race is close overall at 34% NDP to 32% Liberal, the NDP take a 6-point lead in the 905 region, 36% to the PC's 30% and the Lib's 28%. In Toronto proper, the Liberals lead 37% to 33%.

Colour me skeptical of an NDP breakthrough in the 905, but that's the data,  and such as it is, we get an interesting peek at what such a breakthrough could end up looking like.

Map stolen from Wikipedia due to not having my own available right now

It'd be an interesting, if spotty map. Brampton and northern Mississauga - frankly, the areas where there are a lot more immigrants and a lot less WASPs - go NDP fairly easily, though the Liberals hold their vote up here and there surprisingly well. The NDP also dominate York region, except for Thornhill The NDP do well in Peel Region, especially in the ridings in Brampton and northern Mississauga where there is a larger immigrant population, but it isn't enough - depsite being in third place in the region overall, the Liberals edge out both the PCs and the NDP in extremely close three-way races. The reason for this is that the PCs, who would normally benefit from a Liberal drop in the 905, also drop, and the NDP start from such a low position that even a large increase like seen in this poll isn't enough to quite put them over the top.

The Liberals and Conservatives maintain their advantage in York, but only barely with a tight three-way race in practically every riding except Thornhill. The NDP can only scrape by with Oshawa in Durham. Toronto itself remains Liberal friendly.

In other parts of the province, the NDP dominate in the North and the PCs dominate in the East. Both would tie in Southwestern Ontario, 39% NDP to the PC's 35%, 14 16 NDP seats to the PC's 13 13. And the Liberals that once dominated this region? Nowhere to be seen.

If Hell were orange, this is would it would look like folks.

Anyways, this poll has actually prompted me to refine my projection model to take into account the variations between the 905 and 416 regions, instead of treating it as one big area. Under the old model, the NDP would have only 40 seats, and the Liberals significantly higher. While I want to see our seat count go up, I prefer doing it legitimately.

Then, I found I messed up a second time, and had to redo the projection model again - thus giving the Liberals back a few seats and dropping the NDP seats as well, though this time I got the regionals correct. This mainly affected York and Peel, but also some other seats. Sorry about the confusion, but I'm not always perfect until my mistakes come back and smack me in the head.

Forum also asked the preference question under other possible Liberal contenders, and without too much detail, it looks like this:

Wynne as Leader: 34% - 32% - 26%; 47 - 39 - 21 40 - 39 - 28
Pupatello as Leader: 34% - 31% - 26%; 46 - 38 - 23 39 - 38 - 30
Kennedy as Leader: 32% - 31% - 30%; 38 - 36 - 33 38 - 36 - 33

Essentially, neither Wynne nor Pupatello makes much of a difference; Kennedy makes it a three-way race. The main thing to remember of course is that Kennedy has name recognition, the other two don't. Still, its hilarious the bickering going on between some camps yesterday and today - deck chairs on the Titanic, indeed.

If you're wondering where the boost for the NDP comes from, I would bet that the fact that Andrea Horwath has a 51-28 approval/disapproval rating has something slightly to do with it; McGuinty's 21/71 and Hudak's 27/53 are not good, in any sense of the word.

As always, there are always other cool things in Forum's poll including the approval of a coalition government and other fun hypotheticals. Give it a read.


  1. The difference between Pupatello and Wynne won't be apparent until the election is called.

    Wynne will try to run part on the record and part on herself.
    Pupatello will try to run part on not being in the government, and part on herself.

    One of them may prove to be very likable, or, disagreeable. More importantly however is what strategy is best? Ask Ernie Eves if running away from the record is a good idea. Then ask Alison Redford. Ask Bernard Laundry if running on a damaged record is a good idea, then ask Glen Clark.

    Both strategies have proven successful and unsuccessful.