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DAILY TRACKING – OCTOBER 6, 2008

Liberals Narrow Gap as Tories Ebb in Ontario & Falter in Quebec

[OTTAWA – October 6, 2008] – The Liberals have narrowed the gap with the Conservatives nationally on the strength of a resurgence in Ontario and east, and the Conservatives continuing weakness in Quebec. The latest EKOS tracking poll shows the Liberals seven percentage points behind the Conservatives nationally – the narrowest gap yet in our election polling.

“The Conservatives appear to have fallen right out of the race in Quebec, said EKOS President Frank Graves. “They can no longer be confident that they can hang on to all the gains they made there in the 2006 election.”

Meanwhile, there has been a see-saw battle in Ontario in the last ten days, with the Liberals pulling abreast of the Conservatives, then falling back again. “They are now in a statistical dead heat,” he said. “Interestingly the Liberals have accomplished this feat even though the Greens and New Democrats are also running quite strongly in the province – at 15% and 20% respectively.”

The Liberals may also be establishing themselves in second place in Quebec and in the lead in the Atlantic provinces, though the number of respondents in Atlantic Canada is small, and results there must be treated with caution.

“What we have here potentially is a re-emergence of the stark East-West divide in Canadian politics, with the Conservatives driven back on their Western base.”

“Some traditional patterns in the support of the two leading parties have also begun to re-assert themselves,” said Graves. “The Conservatives now have a commanding lead over all the other parties among men, but are barely ahead of the Liberals among women.”

Despite these recent shifts, which could make the difference between majority and minority for the Conservatives, most voters say they have their minds made up. Green Party voters are somewhat less firm in their intentions that supporters of the other parties, but even they are noticeably more determined in their choice than they were just a few days ago.

Roughly one fifth of Canadians say they might reconsider their vote intention if they thought a Tory majority seemed certain, which would probably benefit the Liberals nationally, though perhaps also the NDP in areas such as British Columbia where they are the leading alternative to the government.

However, the temptation to vote tactically to block a Conservative majority may wane if the polls continue to show the tightening in the race that has occurred over the last few days. Moreover some voters may drift back to the Tories if they think they are not going to win a majority.

Detailed Tables:

National Federal Vote Intention

Q. If a federal election were held tomorrow, which party would you vote for?

BASE: Decided Voters

CANADA

BC

AB

SK/MB

ON

QC

ATL

n=

2314

292

119

123

791

798

191

Margin of error (+/-)=

2.0

5.7

9.0

8.8

3.5

3.5

7.1

Conservative

33

38

59

47

33

17

31

Liberal

26

20

14

20

33

21

37

NDP

19

26

15

24

20

15

22

Green

12

16

11

10

15

5

10

Bloc Québécois

10

0

0

0

0

42

0

Note – The data presented in this chart is based on decided voters only. Our survey also finds that 7% of Canadians say they are undecided and 4% say they do not plan to vote on October 14th.

National Federal Vote Intention

Q. If a federal election were held tomorrow, which party would you vote for?

BASE: Decided Voters

CANADA

Gender

Age

Income

M

F

<25

25-44

45-64

65

<$40K

$40-80K

$80K

n=

2314

1093

1221

182

784

922

426

743

843

728

Margin of error (/-)=

2.0

3.0

2.8

7.3

3.5

3.2

4.7

3.6

3.4

3.6

Conservative

33

38

29

21

29

36

42

32

31

36

Liberal

26

24

27

19

24

28

27

21

26

30

NDP

19

17

22

29

20

18

16

20

22

16

Green

12

12

11

18

14

9

8

14

10

11

Bloc Québécois

10

10

11

13

12

9

7

13

12

6

Tracking Federal Vote Intention

2006 Vote

Pre-Writ

End of Week Results

Week 4

Week 5

BASE:
Decided Voters

Sep. 3

Wk1

Wk 2

Wk 3

29

30

1

2

3

4

5

6

Conservative

36.3

38

36

36

34

34

34

34

36

36

36

35

33

Liberal

30.2

26

26

25

25

27

25

25

24

25

25

25

26

NDP

17.5

15

19

18

20

19

20

19

19

19

18

19

19

Green

4.5

11

11

13

11

10

11

11

11

10

10

10

12

Bloc Québécois

10.5

9

8

8

10

9

10

10

10

10

10

10

10

Note – To view daily tracking numbers from throughout the campaign, please download PDF version of this release (link located at the bottom of page)

Tracking Federal Vote Intention in British Columbia

Pre-Writ

End of Week Results

Week 4

Week 5

BASE:
Decided Voters

Sep. 3

Wk1

Wk 2

Wk 3

29

30

1

2

3

4

5

6

Conservative

35

35

39

44

43

38

36

34

35

35

32

38

Liberal

21

19

20

19

20

22

22

24

21

21

21

20

NDP

27

28

23

24

26

28

29

30

31

31

32

26

Green

14

16

18

13

11

13

14

13

13

13

15

16

Tracking Federal Vote Intention in Alberta

Pre-Writ

End of Week Results

Week 4

Week 5

BASE:
Decided Voters

Sep. 3

Wk1

Wk 2

Wk 3

29

30

1

2

3

4

5

6

Conservative

60

60

57

57

53

55

51

59

62

63

61

59

Liberal

17

17

18

17

12

14

17

17

19

17

17

14

NDP

10

10

13

14

18

18

19

14

11

12

15

15

Green

12

12

13

12

16

13

13

10

9

8

7

11

Tracking Federal Vote Intention in Saskatchewan & Manitoba

Pre-Writ

End of Week Results

Week 4

Week 5

BASE:
Decided Voters

Sep. 3

Wk1

Wk 2

Wk 3

29

30

1

2

3

4

5

6

Conservative

43

43

48

41

42

42

47

49

49

48

50

47

Liberal

21

16

18

23

26

26

22

19

18

20

19

20

NDP

30

31

25

25

24

24

21

22

23

18

18

24

Green

6

8

9

10

8

8

10

10

10

14

13

10

Tracking Federal Vote Intention in Ontario

Pre-Writ

End of Week Results

Week 4

Week 5

BASE:
Decided Voters

Sep. 3

Wk1

Wk 2

Wk 3

29

30

1

2

3

4

5

6

Conservative

42

36

36

32

34

35

36

38

39

38

36

33

Liberal

31

33

31

34

37

33

32

30

31

31

32

33

NDP

12

19

18

21

18

20

19

20

19

18

19

20

Green

13

11

15

13

12

13

12

13

12

12

13

15

Tracking Federal Vote Intention in Quebec

Pre-Writ

End of Week Results

Week 4

Week 5

BASE:
Decided Voters

Sep. 3

Wk1

Wk 2

Wk 3

29

30

1

2

3

4

5

6

Conservative

27

25

24

21

21

20

21

20

20

19

21

17

Liberal

21

22

21

18

19

19

19

20

20

20

19

21

NDP

9

14

13

14

16

14

13

12

13

13

13

15

Green

7

9

8

7

7

8

8

7

6

5

5

5

Bloc Québécois

35

29

34

40

37

40

40

40

40

42

43

42

Tracking Federal Vote Intention in Atlantic Canada

Pre-Writ

End of Week Results

Week 4

Week 5

BASE:
Decided Voters

Sep. 3

Wk1

Wk 2

Wk 3

29

30

1

2

3

4

5

6

Conservative

33

32

32

37

30

34

33

39

33

33

31

31

Liberal

37

36

33

24

37

35

33

28

32

35

36

37

NDP

15

24

22

27

25

24

25

21

23

23

23

22

Green

13

7

13

11

8

7

9

12

12

9

10

10

Likelihood of Changing Vote Intention

Q. How likely is it that you will change your mind between now and the federal election?

Current Vote Intention

BASE: Canadians

CANADA

CPC

LPC

NDP

GP

BQ

Undecided

Not likely (1-3)

79

88

83

78

74

82

41

Somewhat likely (4)

6

4

6

8

9

5

12

Likely (5-7)

14

8

12

14

17

13

47

Tracking Likelihood of Changing Vote Intention

End of Week Results

Week 5

BASE:
Decided Voters

Wk 2

Wk 3

Wk 4

6

Conservative

11

11

9

8

Liberal

16

12

12

12

NDP

17

14

12

14

Green

19

18

24

17

Bloc Québécois

16

14

11

13

Undecided

43

42

50

47

Note – To view daily tracking numbers from throughout the campaign, please download PDF version of this release (link located at the bottom of page)

Strategic Vote Switching

Q. If you KNEW that the Conservatives were about to win a majority government in this election, would you then reconsider your current voting intention?

Current Vote Intention

BASE: Canadians

CANADA

CPC

LPC

NDP

GP

BQ

Undecided

Yes – would reconsider

21

14

21

24

30

13

39

No – would not reconsider

79

86

79

76

70

87

61

Tracking Strategic Vote Switching

Sep.-Oct.

BASE: Canadians % “reconsider” by vote intention

29

30

1

2

3

4

5

6

Conservative

11

10

11

12

13

13

13

14

Liberal

20

21

20

21

20

19

19

21

NDP

24

22

22

22

23

22

25

24

Green

31

32

31

29

24

26

28

30

Bloc Québécois

14

15

16

15

10

13

10

13

Undecided

27

26

27

29

33

32

32

39

Strategic Vote Switching

Q. If you KNEW that the Conservatives were about to win a majority government in this election, would you then reconsider your current voting intention?

BASE: Canadians

CANADA

BC

AB

SK/MB

ON

QC

ATL

Yes – would reconsider

21

22

16

24

25

16

22

No – would not reconsider

79

78

84

76

75

84

78

Where do the “Strategic Switchers” Migrate to?

Q. Which Party do you think you might vote for instead?

Current Vote Intention

BASE: Those who say they would change their vote

CANADA

CPC

LPC

NDP

GP

BQ

Undecided

Conservative

11

0

13

17

11

19

11

Liberal

24

23

0

44

33

26

34

NDP

14

21

19

0

24

17

4

Green

6

6

9

6

0

9

4

Bloc Québécois

2

1

1

4

2

0

6

Do not know

42

49

59

29

29

29

41

Tracking Vote Switching

Sep.-Oct.

BASE: Those who say they would change their vote

29

30

1

2

3

4

5

6

Conservative

10

10

11

11

10

9

10

11

Liberal

24

23

24

23

22

22

24

24

NDP

14

13

14

15

14

13

12

14

Green

6

6

7

8

9

9

8

6

Bloc Québécois

7

3

3

3

4

3

3

2

Do not know

39

45

41

40

40

44

44

42

Methodology:

EKOS’ daily tracking polls are conducted using Interactive Voice Recognition (IVR) technology, which allows respondents to enter their preferences by punching the keypad on their phone, rather than telling them to an operator.

Each weekday evening, a nationally representative sample of Canadians, 18 years of age and older is surveyed. The daily tracking number presented in this report is based on a rolling average of surveys collected October 4, 5 and 6.

In total, 2606 Canadians responded to the survey over this period. The margin of error associated with this rolling sample is +/-1.9 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. Please note that the margin of error increases when the results are sub-divided (i.e., error margins for sub-groups such as region, sex, age, income). All the data have been statistically weighted to ensure the samples composition reflects that of the actual population of Canada according to Census data.

Click here to download PDF: election-08-daily-tracking-oct6

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