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DAILY TRACKING – SEPTEMBER 30, 2008

LIBERALS GET SOME MOJO BACK; TORY MAJORITY SLIPPING AWAY

[OTTAWA – September 30, 2008] – After a difficult start on the campaign trail, in the media and in the polls, the Liberal brand has begun to re-assert itself in Ontario, Quebec and Atlantic Canada. The race has tightened somewhat and the Conservatives have fallen back short of majority territory – something that many voters, especially in Ontario, seem to want.

“The race in Ontario began tightening markedly last week,” said EKOS President Frank Graves. “Now the Liberals appear to be eking out a small lead.“

There is evidence of a “re-coil” impulse by some voters against the idea of a Conservative majority, particularly in Ontario, where almost a quarter of voters say they would reconsider their vote choice if they were sure the Tories were headed to majority. These “re-coil” voters are mostly now sitting with the Greens and the NDP, and if they started to move, the Liberals would be the principal beneficiaries by far.

Meanwhile, the Liberal Party has re-asserted itself in Quebec in its traditional redoubts. The Liberals are now essentially level-pegging with the Conservatives, both well behind the Bloc Québécois. However, that may be enough for the Liberals to hold onto the seats they already have there, and potentially make small gains.

In Atlantic Canada, too, the Liberals are once again competitive.

In most of Western Canada, however, the Liberal Party continues to languish in third place, though the Greens no longer threaten to eclipse them in British Columbia as seemed possible just ten days ago.

“The Liberals’ gains, though modest, are significant, because they maintain their lead nationally over the third place NDP, who are running well by historic standards,” said Graves. “Meanwhile the gap between the Liberals and the first-place Conservatives has begun to narrow, though not enough to make them a serious threat to Conservative victory.”

The Liberals seem to be drawing some of this recent support from wayward Liberals, who had moved into the Green camp in the second week of the campaign, or were sitting on the sidelines as undecideds, and have now plunged back in behind the Liberals.

“It is worth noting that the Liberal Party, even with these first signs of resilience, is still tracking at historic lows,” said Graves. “However, after weakening dramatically in the weeks before and after the election was called, Liberal support plateaued, and has now begun a gentle drift into more familiar territory. Whether this can be sustained may turn on Stéphane Dion’s debate performance and the capacity of the Liberal ground campaign in the remaining weeks of the campaign.”

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=

1988

368

112

126

594

627

161

Margin of error (+/-)=

2.2

5.1

9.3

8.7

4.0

3.9

7.7

Conservative

34

43

53

42

34

21

30

Liberal

27

20

12

26

37

19

37

NDP

19

26

18

24

18

16

25

Green

10

11

16

8

12

7

8

Bloc Québécois

9

0

0

0

0

37

0

Note – The data presented in this chart is based on decided voters only. Our survey also finds that 8% of Canadians say they are undecided and 5% say they do not plan to vote in the October 14th election.

Daily Tracking of Federal Vote Intention

2006 Vote

September

BASE:
Decided Voters

11

14

15

16

17

18

19

20

21

22

23

24

25

26

27

28

29

Conservative

36.3

36

35

38

38

38

36

36

36

37

36

37

36

35

34

35

34

34

Liberal

30.2

26

25

23

23

24

25

25

25

24

25

24

25

25

25

25

26

27

NDP

17.5

19

19

19

18

18

18

18

18

19

19

19

19

20

20

20

20

19

Green

4.5

11

11

11

11

12

13

13

12

12

12

11

11

10

11

10

10

10

Bloc Québécois

10.5

8

9

9

10

8

8

8

9

8

8

9

10

10

10

10

10

9

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=

1988

897

1091

155

653

777

403

686

726

567

Margin of error (/-)=

2.2

3.3

3.0

7.8

3.8

3.5

4.9

3.7

3.6

4.1

Conservative

34

37

31

25

33

33

42

29

37

35

Liberal

27

26

28

25

26

28

29

27

26

28

NDP

19

18

21

19

20

19

18

20

18

19

Green

10

10

11

17

12

10

5

11

9

11

Bloc Québécois

9

9

10

14

10

10

5

12

10

6

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)

77

87

78

74

77

78

41

Somewhat likely (4)

7

5

9

7

8

4

14

Likely (5-7)

16

9

14

18

16

18

46

Daily Tracking of Likelihood of Changing Vote Intention

September

BASE: Canadians

% “likely” by vote intention

17

18

19

20

21

22

23

24

25

26

27

28

29

Conservative

11

11

11

11

11

10

10

9

10

11

11

11

9

Liberal

15

16

16

16

13

13

12

13

12

12

12

13

14

NDP

15

16

17

19

18

17

17

15

14

14

16

16

18

Green

22

21

19

17

18

23

25

21

19

18

22

19

16

Bloc Québécois

18

16

16

15

14

14

14

15

13

14

13

15

18

Undecided

51

48

43

45

49

47

49

45

46

42

46

47

46

Blocking a Conservative Majority

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

19

11

20

24

31

14

27

No – would not reconsider

81

89

80

76

69

86

73

Blocking a Conservative Majority

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

19

20

12

16

23

16

23

No – would not reconsider

81

80

88

84

77

84

77

Vote Switching

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

10

0

12

19

7

9

12

Liberal

24

17

0

48

46

17

12

NDP

14

16

21

0

12

9

22

Green

6

9

10

2

0

4

13

Bloc Québécois

7

4

5

6

12

0

6

Do not know

39

54

53

24

23

61

35

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 September 26, 27, 28, and 29.

In total, 2,296 Canadians responded to the survey over this period. The margin of error associated with this rolling sample is +/-2.0 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.

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