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politics

Poll Position: Rob Ford Gaining Support, Olivia Chow Losing Ground

The first poll since Karen Stintz exited the race shows John Tory has retained his position as frontrunner, and Olivia Chow is losing momentum.


If a mayoral election were held today, who would you vote for if the
candidates were Rob Ford, John Tory, David Soknacki, and Olivia Chow?

Rob Ford: 31%

John Tory: 34%

David Soknacki: 4%

Olivia Chow: 23%

Some other candidate: 1%

Don’t know: 6%

Poll taken: August 25‐26, 2014
Sample size: 1,945
Margin of Error: ±2%, 19 times out of 20
Methodology: Interactive voice response telephone survey
Conducted by: Forum Research [PDF]

NOTES: The latest poll from Forum Research finds John Tory holding on to his lead in the mayoral race—falling 1 percentage point from early August—but also reveals that support for the mayor is building: Rob Ford was polling at 27 per cent earlier this month, but that’s now risen to 31 percent, putting him within 3 percentage points of first-place Tory. (It’s the first time the mayor has gone above 27 per cent in the last four-and-a-half months.) And fewer voters now believe the mayor should resign: while 63 per cent thought he should step down in early June, 50 per cent would now be in favour of such a move.


Olivia Chow, considered the frontrunner until as recently as July, has continued her slide, falling 2 percentage points since the last Forum poll: the fifth time in a row that her results have dropped. (This general trajectory is fairly standard for someone who enters the race in the lead—their numbers don’t have anywhere to go but down. The question for her campaign team is whether they can build up a second wind and regain momentum in the last leg of the race.)

The policy wonks’ favourite, David Soknacki, is still stuck at 4 per cent. Though some had been hoping he’d pull off a David Miller–style breakout—the former mayor was also polling in the single digits at the end of the summer during his first mayoral campaign—Soknacki’s window of opportunity to see a big increase in public support is closing fairly quickly.

This was the first time voter support had been gauged since Karen Stintz dropped out of the race, and Olivia Chow benefited less than Tory and Ford from this development: of those who indicated they’d been planning to vote for Stintz, 30 per cent moved to Ford, 27 to Tory, and 24 to Chow. Given that Stintz had only been polling at 4 per cent before she dropped out, however, these numbers didn’t make much of a difference to any of the candidates.

Toronto’s election will be held on October 27, 2014.

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