Week One of Ontario Election Goes to McGuinty Liberals

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Dalton McGuintyTHUNDER BAY – The first week of the Ontario Election has gone to the Liberals and Dalton McGuinty. The Liberals are trending up in several polls, including the latest CTV/Globe/CP24/Nanos Poll. The Liberals have, it appears over the summer overtaken the Progressive Conservatives.

A quick snapshot poll of 507 voters this weekend by Nanos Research suggests that, factoring in the margin of error, we still have a close race, but the Liberals are numerically ahead of the Conservatives and trending up. The NDP are up while the Greens are down as is support for other parties.

The percentage of Ontarians who trust all the provincial party leaders is trending downward while the proportion of unsure has increased to 24%.

Similar to the trust tracking, the percentage of Ontarians who are unsure as to which leader has the best vision for Ontario has gone up.

The shifts in perceptions of the leaders are likely the fallout from the negative attack ads – tearing all the brands down. This campaign has mostly been about mudslinging and negative campaigning and the perceptions of all the leaders have suffered to one extent or another.

Perhaps, the Ontario election campaign will boil down to a simple question: which leader do voters least dislike?

The detailed tables and methodology are posted on our website where you can also register to receive automatic polling updates.

Methodology: Between September 10th and 11th, 2011, Nanos Research conducted a random telephone survey of 507 Ontarians 18 years and older. A random telephone survey of 507 Ontarians is accurate plus or minus 4.4 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

For 415 committed voters, the margin of error is accurate plus or minus 4.9 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

Ontario Ballot Question: For those parties you would consider voting for provincially, could you please rank your top two current local preferences? (Committed voters only – First Preference)

The numbers in parentheses denote the change from September 1st, 2011 (n=917).
*Undecided represents respondents who are not committed voters.

Ontario (n=415 committed voters)

Liberal 38.1% (+6.2)
Progressive Conservative 34.7% (-0.7)
NDP 24.3% (+1.5)
Green 2.7% (-1.4)
*Undecided 18.0% (+9.2)

Leadership Questions: As you may know, [Rotate] Dalton McGuinty is the leader of the Liberal Party, Tim Hudak is the leader of the Progressive Conservative Party, Andrea Horwath is the leader of the NDP, and Mike Schreiner is the leader of the Green Party. Which of the provincial leaders would you best describe as: the most trustworthy, and the leader with the best vision for Ontario? (n=507)

The numbers in parentheses denote the change from August 13th, 2011 (n=1,000).

The Most Trustworthy Leader (n=507)
Dalton McGuinty 22.6% (-5.5)
Tim Hudak 19.3% (-3.5)
Andrea Horwath 11.1% (-2.5)
Mike Schreiner 3.2% (+0.5)
Unsure 24.1% (+10.0)
None of them 19.7% (+1.0)

The Leader with the Best Vision for Ontario’s Future (n=507)
Dalton McGuinty 25.5% (-3.3)
Tim Hudak 19.5% (-6.3)
Andrea Horwath 12.6% (-0.3)
Mike Schreiner 2.9% (+0.2)
Unsure 26.8% (+10)
None of them 12.6% (-0.4)

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