So we now have two polls with the Conservatives out in front.
Sure one poll is a slight lead but the other one is a major lead. What are we to make of this? I keep being told by all the smart people that Justin Trudeau and his Liberals are unassailable, guaranteed to win the next election.
Of course that is silliness.
All parties are vulnerable as voters survey the landscape and change their minds, often because they don’t like what a political party has done.
The Nanos poll is the biggest change, Forum previously had the Conservatives with a strong lead.
So let’s look at the numbers from Nanos.
The Conservatives have 35% support to the Liberals 34% and the NDP sitting at 16. The Greens polled at 8% in this poll which is significant and Maxime Bernier’s People’s Party 1%.
Bernier could be a spoiler of course for Scheer and the Conservatives but so too could the Greens be a spoiler for the Liberals. At 8% the Greens are polling at more than double what they received in the 2015 vote.
The Conservatives have been gaining support steadily over the past several weeks of this tracking poll, we will see if they can keep it.
My problem with Nanos is a lack of regional breakdowns because national numbers only tell you so much. With these kinds of topline numbers, either the Conservatives or Liberals could form government, it depends where their votes are.
The Forum Poll is shockingly different from Nanos.
Forum has the Conservatives at 43% support to the Liberals at 34%, the NDP at 11% and the Greens at 6%. Bernier’s party is just listed as “other” and gets 1% support.
Where this poll gets interesting is in the background numbers.
In this poll the Conservatives lead in every age group from those 18-34 all the way through those aged 65+. This is shocking news for the Liberals.
Getting younger voters is Liberal bread and butter, they can’t win without strong youth turn out and enough seniors flipping from the Conservatives.
Gender gap is deadly for Liberals.
The Liberals have a technical lead among women, but only one point – 38% of women back the Liberals and 37% back the Conservatives. When it comes to men, the Liberals have a huge gender gap.
A full 51% of male voters told Forum they would vote Conservative if an election were held today compared to 31% that would vote Liberal. That is a stunning 20 point gender gap that Trudeau will have a hard time overcoming.
The Conservatives also lead among every income group and when broken down by educational attainment level, they only lose out to the Liberals in one category, a small one, voters with a post graduate degree.
This poll is bad news for Trudeau’s party and great news for Scheer’s.
Poll shows a divided Canada.
When it comes to regional breakdowns, things get really interesting.
Once again the Liberals find their support heavily concentrated in Eastern Canada, too heavily concentrated to actually win.
The Conservatives see enough support spread across each region that, if these numbers came true on election day, they would win seats in every region of the country.
The Liberals are at 50% in Atlantic Canada, this is a region where they currently hold every seat. It is doubtful that they could win all of them again and with the Conservatives at 35% I’m confident they would pick up a few.
In Quebec the Liberals are the lead part but they only sit at 35% support. The Conservatives are at 29% which would mean several extra seats on top of the 11 they have now. The Liberals would likely lose some of the 40 seats they hold but so would the NDP which is tanking in Quebec at 11%, the Bloc is at 17%.
Expect them to swap some seats.
From Ontario to British Columbia, the Trudeau Liberals don’t find a welcome home perhaps with the exception of Vancouver.
The Conservatives have significant leads in Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta and British Columbia.
The biggest threat to Trudeau’s hold on power is losing some of the 78 seats his party currently holds in Ontario. With the Conservatives at 44% in that province and the Liberals at 39%, that is bound to happen.
I’m not talking wipe out in Ontario but there would be losses.
As for everywhere between Ontario and downtown Vancouver, it would likely be a wipe out.
Poll shows trend and concentration of Liberal support.
I’m not saying this will happen, 10 months is a very long time in politics. And plenty of people will be quick to point out that Forum has the Conservatives well ahead of what any other polling firm does.
All valid points.
Yet what this poll does is show once again, as many other polls have done before, that Trudeau’s support is super concentrated.
He can’t win on the prairies.
He has split his BC vote with some upset he bought the pipeline and others upset it isn’t moving fast enough.
The Liberals can’t win with just Quebec and Atlantic Canada.
Trudeau needs Ontario, a province where he is picking a legal and constitutional fight over making life less affordable with his carbon tax. I ask again, how many Liberal MPs will be able to win with a promise to raise taxes and drive up the cost of everything.
Its going to be very interesting in 2019.