Conservatives trending up, Liberals slipping in Ont.
Published Monday, April 25, 2011 10:50PM EDT
Last Updated Saturday, May 19, 2012 4:34AM EDT
The Conservatives are picking up steam in Ontario and continue to hold a solid lead over the Liberals at the national level, according to a new poll released just a week before the May 2 election.
The latest Nanos Research poll conducted for CTV and The Globe and Mail finds the Tories in the lead with 39.2 per cent of surveyed voters from across Canada.
That's well ahead of the Liberals (25.6 per cent) and New Democrats (23.6 per cent) who remain statistically tied, as well as the Bloc Quebecois (6.5 per cent) and the Greens (3.6 per cent).
The Nanos poll released Monday also suggests the Liberals are trending down in vote-rich Ontario, showing their lowest level of support (29.3 per cent) since the start of the current campaign. That leaves them trailing well behind the Conservatives (47.8 per cent), but ahead of the NDP (16.9 per cent) and the Greens (5.4 per cent).
Pollster Nik Nanos said it is likely that Prime Minister Stephen Harper will be focused on Ontario in the closing days of the campaign, as he tries to help his party pick up enough seats to form a majority government.
"Watch Ontario because it could put the Conservatives close to a majority government if they do well and the NDP don't pick up," Nanos told CTV's Canada AM from Ottawa on Monday morning.
Nanos said Liberal Leader Michael Ignatieff, on the other hand, needs to stop the bleeding in Ontario, to avoid having a showing that is "potentially the same or worse as Stephane Dion in the last election."
In nearby Quebec, the Nanos poll puts the NDP (30.2 per cent) and Bloc Quebecois (27.4 per cent) in a statistical tie, ahead of the Liberals (22 per cent), the Conservatives (14.1 per cent) and the Greens (2.3 per cent).
Out in Atlantic Canada, the Nanos poll shows the Tories trending up at 47.5 per cent support, ranking ahead of the Liberals (29.8 per cent) and the NDP (21 per cent). The Green hold 1.7 per cent support in the region.
In the Prairies, the Tories still rank well ahead of their rivals at 47.9 per cent support, compared to 24.2 per cent support for the NDP and 23.9 per cent support for the Liberals. Three per cent of surveyed voters in this region said they supported the Greens.
The Nanos poll found a similar distribution of support in British Columbia with the Tories (44.1 per cent) leading the NDP (27.4 per cent), the Liberals (24 per cent) and the Greens (3.9 per cent).
Nanos said NDP Leader Jack Layton will have to decide which provinces hold the most potential for his party, in order to plan out the final phase of his election campaign.
"For Jack Layton, he's got to pick where he's going to go, because his numbers are up in Quebec, perhaps they can pick up more seats," Nanos said, noting that Ontario and British Columbia are important regions for the NDP as well.
Monday's Nanos poll used a random telephone sample of 1,023 decided Canadian voters, who were surveyed on April 21, 23 and 24. It is considered accurate to within 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.