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%) -
Prog. Conservative: 32% (-1%) - 34 seats (-20 seats)
Ontario Liberal: 27% (=) -
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.
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%,
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%;
Pupatello as Leader: 34% - 31% - 26%;
Kennedy as Leader: 32% - 31% - 30%;
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.