Friday, October 16, 2015

Nanos, Forum: Liberal Lead in ON is not Crazy; Lead Now Controversy

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.

11 comments:

Jeremy Akerman said...

How confident are you about 80+ seats for a party polling only 22+%? Doesn't that require unusual concentration? Has it ever happened before that a party in the low twenties got that many seats?

Election Watcher said...

Read my post on probabilities:

http://cdnelectionwatch.blogspot.ca/2015/10/understanding-projections-ii-uncertainty.html

Since my projection for the NDP is at 81 seats, I'd say there's a 50-55% chance it'll get more than 80 seats. As I've written many times, this is due to the efficiency of its vote in Québec, where they're projected to win a majority of seats on just 28-29% of the vote.

Gideon said...

Not surprised that Leadnow is showing its true colors. I will be very angry if voters are misguided by it, resulting in a Conservative victory. I am already extremely jaded, and this doesn't make things better.

Anonymous said...

@Gideon, I totally agree especially when I see progressives fighting with each other when we are so close, makes it so difficult to digest. When I hear Elizabeth May stating that she wants people to vote for what they want, and as much as I understand her prerogative on getting votes for her party, I think people like her dont understand how tough it would be for every single progressive to swallow a conservative victory. I just hope progressives remember the past 4 years and until we can change the electoral system, they shouldnt listen to people like her who are looking out only for their own interests rather than interests of progressives. Then, to see Gagnier's email was so inappropriate without winning a mandate. I mean, people like him have made so much money and to jump the gun like that when liberal momentum was so strong, was sad to see.

Gideon said...

Yeah, Anonymous, All her comments are filled with remarks about giving the Greens more seats, and the realty is that the Greens wouldn't win more than one seat if strategic voting wasn't a thing. It's not that I don't find climate change the #1 issue of our times (I do). I just cannot waste my vote on the Green Party.

And the Gagnier thing might just halt the Liberal surge and even reverse it. And Mulcair is helping Harper attack Trudeau on this. If the Liberals start trending down tomorrow, I see (and will call it) Harper getting a fourth term.

Anonymous said...

@Gideon. But part of the reason Mulcair went after Trudeau is because Trudeau is now campaigning to beat Mulcair in his own riding which besides being a waste of resources, was lost focus. I'm sure it was payback for what the NDP was doing earlier in the campaign. For me, the level of pettiness mirrors the kind shown by the conservatives. I understand that they are going all out to win and playing nice doesnt necessarily work, but like you said, my first priority is ensuring a conservative defeat and they can focus on everything later.

With regard to Gagnier, even though he didnt do anything wrong, the media narrative especially supported by their bosses is that of implied favors which may/may not put doubts in voters minds. Many people dont know that Gagnier is asoociated with EPIC that is chock full of conservatives. I'm sure the person who leaked the mail was a conservative too. Leaking such a confidential mail to the media between upper level executives right after it was sent shows an agenda at the top. Then again, Justin should've let him go immediately instead of waiting and defending initially because they come across looking like Harper. I mean, Harper has some gall pointing at liberals especially considering his actions over the past 10 years.

When it comes to momentum reversal, I'm hoping that letting go of Gagnier will stop the bleeding so to speak. Nothing really stopped the Wynne momentum last year so I would say, better to be hopeful. I think the issue has slowed the momentum a little bit for sure. We have to see the extent in the next few polls. I think Nanos is reasonably accurate so dont give up hope yet. At one point, for me, as long as Harper didnt win a majority, I was going to be happy. Since I know the extent Harper would go to hold onto power that I want him to lose and that too, at the hands of JT.

Anonymous said...

Ekos is showing a tightening tho interestingly. I'm still confused on the 28% conservative voting percentage among the 18-34 age group that Ekos has been continually showing. I know Ekos called our home but my roomie didnt even take the call. So not sure. Having said that, as long as Ontario and mainly the 905 comes back to the liberal hands, I think they should be okay.

Election Watcher said...

EKOS has usually been more CPC friendly than average this campaign. So this may just be a return to that bias. Note that EKOS numbers are very close to my adjusted numbers.

18-34 age group has lots of cell phone only (CPO) users. EKOS got burned by weighing CPOs too heavily in 2011, so I think they're adopting a more cautious approach this time. It could be that 18-34 year olds that have a landline are more Conservative and weighted more heavily by EKOS.

Response rate to polls is, I think, under 10%. So it's not surprising that your roommate didn't answer.

Even if the Liberals nearly sweep the 905 (I'm talking 24-4), they would likely barely eke out an overall win. To get any sort of margin, the Liberals need a breakthrough either elsewhere in Ontario or in Québec outside Montréal.

Joey Jo Jo said...

Interesting... Abacus won't publish final horserace numbers but does come out with these: http://abacusdata.ca/final-elxn42-poll-expected-winner-and-best-performing-leader/

Pretty easy to determine what their other numbers were when Trudeau scores this highly on other questions.

Anonymous said...

I Really would like to see the Harper Win Trudeau is to young my personal opinion

Election Watcher said...

I'll just point out that Trudeau is 43, while Harper was 46 when he became PM. Not a big difference.