We've had 8 polls since the campaign begun on May 1st.
Of those, 4 have indicated a PC lead of between 5 and 11 points.
And 4 have indicated a Liberal lead of between 3 and 6 points.
Both Ipsos polls show a PC lead, while both Innovative polls show a Liberal lead. Forum has one of each.
Within each group of 4 there is at least one IVR, Online, and Telephone poll. Each has large (1.5K) and smaller (under 900) sample sizes. It's thus very strange that we would see two groups that seem to disagree in such a manner.
Within the polls showing a Liberal lead, the average is 38% for the Liberals, 33% for the Tories, 22% for the NDP, and 6% for the Greens.
Within the polls showing a PC lead, the average is 31% for the Liberals, 39% for the Tories, 25% for the NDP, and 5% for the Greens.
So, what is going on. Why such the different numbers? I decided to dig in to this to try to figure it out.
I compared regions; there was nothing useful that came out of that. I compared past polling from the same company, but that usefulness of that was debatable. I compared education, immigration status, age, but none of it seemed to fit.
Then I compared Men and Women.
All 8 polls - or rather, those within the 8 that detail the breakdown - agree that Men favour the PC Party by some margin, usually narrowly.
Polls showing a PC lead all indicated that Women distributed their votes in a similar pattern, while all the polls showing a Liberal lead had Women voting Liberal by wide margins. Compare for example the two Forum polls, showing differing results:
You can see the split among male voters is at 41-33 in one poll and 41-34 in the other. However, among Women the split changes from 35-33 to 30-42
Why this is, I do not know. I simply noticed this very odd pattern; something I've never seen before. I will start to dig in to past polls for past elections and see if I can figure out what this means.