Since they first won back in 2003, the Ontario Liberals have enjoyed widespread support from Big Labour. Not so much now.
While many unions are still backing the Liberals, the support isn’t as strong or unanimous as it was. In particular I’m talking about LiUNA, the Labourers union.
After spending years campaigning for Liberals and raising lots of money for them, LiUNA vice-president Joe Mancinelli has declared war in the Ontario Liberals. Here is how Hamilton publication The Bay Observer described Mancinelli’s move.
But that’s all over now, following the release of the recent Liberal Budget that had, tucked away where most would not notice, a clause that transferred a large piece of the LIUNA jurisdiction over to the Carpenter’s Union. “It is a personal betrayal and a betrayal of LIUNA,” said Mancinelli, who vows to have his 120,000-strong Ontario membership campaign to defeat Liberal MPPs who vote for the budget provision.
Essentially, LiUNA is upset that they have lost control over par of the construction trades in Ontario thanks to Liberal insiders favouring the carpenter’s union. Mancinelli warned the Liberals, they did not listen, then he turned his members against them.
A big labour union scorned.
Last month he rallied an estimated 10,000 people to denounce the Liberals on the lawn of Queen’s Park. Now the largest construction union in the province in campaigning against the Liberals and telling members to back whichever candidate, PC or NDP, can beat the Liberals.
They even commissioned a poll and are claiming results.
And, as the Campaign Research poll below shows, the Wynne Liberals are paying a price. They’ve been pushing unpopular policies – and schedule 14 was one of those unpopular policies.
This startling poll, commissioned by LIUNA, shows Wynne and Del Duca in a free fall in the Greater Toronto Area. And the GTA is where we have thousands of members and member families.
So what does the poll show?
It shows the shocking collapse of Fortress Toronto. The Liberals now only hold a commanding lead in one Toronto riding and a decent lead in a second.
In Kathleen Wynne’s riding of Don Valley West the PC’s are in the lead by 12 points, 43% to 31%. Wynne won this riding with 57% of the vote last election, her nearest rival took 30% of the vote.
Admittedly, the folks at Campaign Research who conduced the poll acknowledge that the accuracy of riding by riding results is not as solid as the overall Toronto numbers. Still, could the Liberals be reduced to holding just Toronto St. Paul’s and Toronto Centre?
It is possible.
Across the Toronto area the Liberals only hold the lead in 4 ridings out of 25 ridings, the NDP lead in 7, the PCs in 14. Even at that, in two of those ridings, Eglinton-Lawrence and University Rosedale, the Liberals are statistically tied.
Across the entire region the PCs are dominant.
Across Toronto the topline numbers show the race falling as such, without undecided voters included – PCs 35%, NDP 32% and Liberals 27%. It is when you get to the suburban parts of Toronto that things go really badly for the Liberals.
The PCs could take as much as 47% of the vote in Scarborough according to this poll. That is in addition to 38% in Etobicoke York and 43% in North York. In the area of Toronto East York, essentially the downtown area, the NDP leads with 40%.
Check out the full poll details below and if you are a Liberal, have some tissues, or a bottle, at the ready.