Today's Nanos and Forum polls align: the Liberals lead by 6 nationally, by 2 in QC, by 9-10 in ON, and by -1 over Tories and 3-4 over the NDP in BC. It's rare that there is such agreement!
The Ontario situation is interesting. Here are the Liberal leads in ON in the last poll published by Forum, Nanos and EKOS as of last morning, and as of this morning:
- Last morning: 15 (10/8-9), 16.7 (10/11, 13, 14), 18.1 (10/11-13)
- This morning: 9 (10/13-14), 10 (10/13-15), 10.7 (10/12-14)
Quite a different picture, isn't it? By the way, the other recent polls in ON are all over the map, with the Liberals leads as follows:
20 (Innovative, 10/6-11)
13 (Ipsos, 10/9-12)
7 (Abacus, 10/5-6)
7 (Mainstreet, 10/6-7)
3 (Léger, 10/5-7)
0 (Angus Reid, 10/7-9)
The common thread I see here is that Liberal numbers in ON were particularly good over Thanksgiving weekend. Conservative voters at family events and not picking up? Burst of enthusiasm from the Trudeau Brampton rally ad? Or just noise that happened to go the same way in multiple polls? In any case, the story seems to be that the Liberal ON lead has pulled back a little, but is still higher this week than it was last week.
Of course, the advantage of poll averaging is that these temporary lurches don't show up much: the Liberal ON lead is now pegged at 9.5% unadjusted, 6.2% adjusted. Both are only about 1 point lower than last morning.
There have also been three riding polls by Mainstreet in Alberta. The Liberals have a 1-point lead in Calgary Centre. That's the third Alberta poll having the Liberals tied or ahead in an Alberta riding: Mainstreet also showed a 1-point Liberal lead in Calgary Confederation last month, and a tie in Edmonton Mill Woods last week. Now, none of these is enough to swing the projection to show a Liberal seat - the turnout adjustment would mean marginal Liberal losses, and when the projection and a riding poll conflicts, I take an average of the two. But I am giving a seat to the Liberals in Alberta because:
- with 3 very tight races, the chances are decent that they'd break through in at least one; and
- the best Liberal riding in AB in 2011, Calgary Skyview, has not yet been publicly polled; since the Liberal candidate is stronger than expected in other good Liberal ridings, it's not a big stretch to think that Calgary Skyview has a good chance of falling to the Liberals.
In other words, the Liberals have decent chances in at least 4 Alberta ridings. Even if you believe that, for any given one of them, they are more likely to lose than to win, you might also believe that they'll probably come out ahead in at least one of them. At this point, that is my assessment.
So the new projection is:
CON - 131, -2 (33.4%)
LIB - 121, +2 (34.3%, +0.2%)
NDP - 81 (22.5%)
BQ - 4 (4.6%)
GRN - 1 (4.2%, -0.1%)
Unadjusted, I get no seat change from last night:
LIB - 131 (35.2%)
CON - 116 (31.7%)
NDP - 83 (23.2%)
BQ - 7 (4.6%)
GRN - 1 (4.4%)
Finally, a word about Vancouver Granville and the Lead Now controversy: the party with the best chance of defeating the Tories there is the Liberal Party: it leads the NDP by 2 and 16 points in riding polls this month, and models based on aggregate BC numbers also suggest that the Liberals are ahead. Lead Now needs to decide whether it is a strategic voting organization, or an interest group pushing left-wing values. Mixing the two is clumsy and misleading to voters.