Sunday, May 1, 2011

Forum: Tories by 2

Forum Research's last poll of the campaign is the tightest yet: 35-33. The NDP is up to 31% in Ontario, just 5% behind the Tories, and 43% in Québec (the writeup says 33, but there are clearly 10 points missing in Québec, and the NDP number would not reach 33% nationally if the Québec number were that "low"). In BC, the Tories are just 2% ahead of the NDP, so maybe Abacus was onto something. This poll has a large sample of 3,789.

It is becoming clearer and clearer that Ontario is turning its back to the Grits. This is great news for Stephen Harper's majority prospects (but see update 2 below). The Tories pick up two more GTA seats from the Liberals in the projection. If the Forum poll is right that the Conservatives lead the Liberals by 10% in the GTA, the Tories could win over 25 seats there, up from their current 8.

[Update: A word of caution: this poll says that the Tories lead the Liberals by 10% in the GTA, a huge change from 2008 when the Grits won the area by 8%. However, the poll defines the GTA as "the two-dozen ridings in the City of Toronto itself, and more than 30 ridings in the surrounding metropolitan area." That's at least 53 ridings, while usually the GTA only includes 42 ridings. Adding those 11 ridings means that, in fact, the GTA did not swing by 18% as might appear at first glance. Fortunately, I did not use Forum's GTA numbers for the projection.]

[Update 2: The GTA/non-GTA divide is very important. The Tories' main competitors in the GTA are still the Liberals, but elsewhere in Ontario, it's now the NDP. So if the Liberals are bleeding in the GTA, it's good news for Harper. But if they're bleeding elsewhere, that could hurt the Conservatives.]

The other changes in the projection are an NDP gain from the Liberals in Toronto and another NDP gain from the Bloc.

CON - 154 153
NDP - 95 96
LIB - 46
BQ - 13

The Tory national lead shrinks to 7.1%.

20 comments:

Anonymous said...

This new poll seems to decrease the chances of a Harper majority. The Conservatives are not high enough in Ontario and the Lib vote is concentrated in some ridings. So the Lib vote won't be strong enough to divide the NDP vote and let the PC slip through. Just my opinion.

Skoblin said...

EW,

Is it possible to deduce what the probable polling numbers are in Ontario outside of the GTA? They seem to point to almost a dead heat between the NDP and the Conservatives.

Election Watcher said...

I just noticed that Forum Research has a much more expansive definition of the GTA than usual, so what I wrote in the post is wrong. I'll update that soon.

The Forum poll defines the GTA as more than half of the province. So if the Tories lead the NDP by at least 10% in this large GTA, and just 5% provincially, that means the NDP is marginally ahead elsewhere...

Election Watcher said...

Anon 11:48: It all depends on where the shifts occurred... If the Liberals fell more outside the GTA, that's bad for Harper since he mainly deals with the Grits in the GTA and the NDP elsewhere. But if the Liberals fell more within the GTA, then it's good for Harper.

Anonymous said...

I would think, based on these numbers, that the NDP would take Con seats like Oshawa and Kenora. Maybe even Essex. Which may offest, to some degree, seats the Cons take from the Liberals in GTA.

Anonymous said...

Yawn..Can't we just wait for tomorrow? Just post your final prediction and wait for the results tomorrow to see if your wrong or right.

Everything right now is just noise.

Anonymous said...

I have enjoyed the site very much. Thanks for your efforts and attempts at bringing analytical firepower to the art of seat projection.

Personally, I hope Jack does not receive a "Happy Ending" on Monday ....

Election Watcher said...

Anon 12:26p: We could, but isn't it more fun this way?

Anon 12:30p: Thanks!

twa said...

Conservative Majority...170 seats..

Anonymous said...

Conservative Majority ... 182 seats...

Top Can said...

What are the chances of some more conservative Liberals, if they manage to get reelected, of signing an agreement to prop up a Harper minority? That would essentially give him a majority government.

Ian said...

Top Can, I think the chances of that are good.

And I think this is why Harper's not talking about what he'll do if he only wins a minority.

His plan, I think, is to delay parliament (which he's allowed to do for 6 months) and in the meantime, unleash a barrage of scaremongering ("it's socialism and separatism!!!") and wait for some Liberals to bail.

Ian said...

Further to that... Just imagine what that series of events will do to national unity. A majority Conservative government based on less than 40% popular vote plus a number of floor crossing Liberals, that came to power via a tirade of abuse against the two parties ("commies" and "traitors") that are overwhelmingly popular in Quebec.

Election Watcher said...

I agree, Ian, it'd be a disaster. The Tories might not dislike seeing Québec go though - that would make Canada a centre-right country.

ajbeecroft said...

@Ian:
Here's what Eugene Forsey has to say on the subject:
"If no party gets a clear majority, the cabinet that was in office before and during the election has
two choices. It can resign, in which case the Governor General or lieutenant-governor will call on the leader of the largest opposition party to form a cabinet. Or the cabinet already in office can choose to stay in office and meet the newly elected House — which, however, it must do promptly. In either case, it is the people’s representatives in the newly elected House who will decide whether the “minority” government
(one whose own party has fewer than half the seats) shall stay in office or be thrown out."

Not sure where you're getting the idea that Harper could postpone convening the House for six months.

Ian said...

I got the six months idea from Peter Russell, here:

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/opinions/opinion/heres-what-happens-after-the-election/article2004597/?from=sec368

I might have miscalculated about the number of months, but it does seem that Harper's entitled to wait a long time. Joe Clark waited 140 days. Russell says it would be "intolerable" if Harper did that too, but it depends what you mean by "intolerable". Yes, intolerable in that we'd have to endure a daily barrage of propaganda from Sun Media. But we'd have no legal choice but to tolerate it.

Ian said...

EW, are there any jobs in Quebec for unilingual, leftist anglophones like me?

Courage, my friends, 'tis never too late to learn French :)

Election Watcher said...

Ian: Haha, well there are probably a few on the West Island :)

Anonymous said...

This poll looks off to me. The link provided does not have complete results so this one looks like the Compas poll.

Anonymous said...

It says Conservatives 40, Liberals 30 in the GTA which makes up about half of Ontario, and Conservatives 36, NDP 31, Liberals 25 in the whole of Ontario. The NDP appears therefore to be ahead in the rest of Ontario, and there is a clear division it appears between the part of Ontario where the NDP are the Conservatives' main opponent, and the other where it's the Liberals playing this role. If this is true it is excellent news, it makes a Conservative majority impossible.