Doug Ford and Ontario PC’s slowly recovering from difficult spring session in 2019
Campaign Research has conducted a public opinion poll with 957 Ontarians on their views and support of Ontario’s political parties and the Party Leaders. This poll was conducted between September the 3rd and September the 5th, 2019.
If an election were held tomorrow, The Ontario Progressive Conservative Party (OPC) leads the Ontario Liberal Party of Ontario (OLP) by 4% (32% and 28% respectively). The Ontario New Democratic Party (ONDP) have the support of 27% of the population. And the Ontario Green Party (OGRP) are also benefitting from a national bump in Green Party support, with 11%.
Since the 2018 provincial election the OPC’s are down 8.5%% and the ONDP is also down about 6.5%. The OLP is up 8.5% and the OGRP is also up 6.5%.
The OPC’s dominate the OLP and the ONDP in Eastern Region (not including the City of Ottawa), Halton/ Peel/ York/ Simcoe and Durham Regions. The ONDP dominate in Northern Ontario and in the Hamilton/ Niagara Region. The OLP has retaken the lead in the City of Toronto. In the City of Ottawa and Southwest Ontario, all 3 parties remain very competitive (3-way tie).
The big story is Premier Doug Ford’s improvement in his job approval rating over the last 4 months. Premier Ford ended the parliamentary session, shuffled his Cabinet and dramatically changed the entire tone of his government by replacing his controversial Chief of Staff. Ford has climbed back from a low of only 18% approval and up to 25% approval in the span of just 3 months. That’s a net gain of 7%.
In addition to Doug Ford’s job approval number improving, his disapproval number has also improved from 71% disapproval in June 2019 to 63% disapproval in September, this past week.
Taken together, Premier Ford and the OPC’s have been able to turn the overall net job approval rating back to a number that they could potentially recover from. Former Premier Kathleen Wynne had reached a point where her net job approval rating was consistently at -50. She was never able to recover from that number.
In June, Premier Ford had the same level of net negative job approval rating (-49). But now, 3 months later, the net job approval rating is improved to -38 overall. Though this is not great, nor very good, it is also not very bad and not near the level that former Premier Wynne faced going into her last election campaign.
At the end of our survey we wanted to take a different approach to see which category Ontario voters would put themselves into with respect to their previous support for Doug Ford’s OPC Party and their potential future support for Andrew Scheer’s Conservative Party of Canada.
The results clearly show that Andrew Scheer’s CPC will receive 31% of Ontario voters’ support with an additional 17% saying they “Don’t know or are Unsure”. This indicates that Andrew Scheer can grow up to 40% support in Ontario.
With respect to the argument that Doug Ford is holding Andrew Scheer and the federal Conservative Party back in Ontario, though that argument may have been true, it is less true today than perhaps it was in May and June of 2019.
“With Doug Ford’s PC government making significant changes (Cabinet shuffle, extending the summer recess, making policy changes that are being better received by municipal leaders and replacing his Chief of Staff), the OPC has retaken the lead in Ontario and Premier Doug Ford has made gains in his net job approval rating. With respect to the federal election in October, the federal CPC has climbed back up to 36% in Ontario (from 31% in June) and the LPC is down to 36% (from 38% in June). This has coincided with the changes in the Ford government over the same 3 months and it would seem that Andrew Scheer’s CPC can grow to the same level of support that the Ford OPC Party achieved in the 2018 province election, said Nick Kouvalis, Principal at Campaign Research Inc. Nick can be reached at 519-791-9663.
This online study was conducted by Campaign Research as part of its monthly omnibus study between Sept 3rd to 5th, 2019 through an online survey of 957 randomly selected Canadian adults who are members of Maru/Blue’s online panel Maru Voice Canada and were provided with various incentives to respond. The panelists were selected to reflect Canada’s age, gender and regional distributions in line with 2016 Statistics Canada census data. For comparison purposes, a probability sample of this size has an estimated margin of error (which measures sampling variability) of +/- 3.17% 19 times out of 20.
The results have been weighted by education, age, gender, and region (and in Quebec, language) to match the population according to 2016 Census data. Certain areas or groups may be oversampled but have been weighted to reflect their proportion of Canada’s population. This is to ensure the sample is representative of the entire adult population of Canada. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding.
The following screening question was asked in order to determine eligibility for participation in the study
"Are you 18 years of age or older and eligible to vote in federal elections?"