Poll Position: Mayoral Match-ups
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Poll Position: Mayoral Match-ups

How would Rob Ford do in a head-to-head race if an election were held right now?

If a mayoral election were held today, who would you vote for if the candidates were Mayor Rob Ford and ________________ ?


Poll taken: January 25, 2013
Sample size: 1,099
Margin of Error: +/-3%, 19 times out of 20
Methodology: Interactive voice response telephone survey
Conducted by: Forum Research (registration required to see full results)

NOTES: Out today are the results of a poll taken on Friday—right after we all learned that Rob Ford had won his appeal over conflict of interest allegations and would get to keep his job—showing how the mayor would fare against several potential challengers.

We have several concerns about this survey, in part because of that timing: polls taken the day of a major event are inevitably skewed by the recent news. We need a bit of time to see what the longer-term effects of Ford’s court decision will really be. It’s also the case that all of these election scenarios are highly implausible. Mayoral races in Toronto are shaped by the large number of candidates they attract, so we don’t learn much about who would win in real life by imagining two way races—we’re much more likely to see at least three major contenders in the next campaign.

What is most striking about the results: they not actually driven by political views. Ford could be defeated by candidates on the right (like John Tory) or the left (like Olivia Chow). At this stage, name recognition and personality seem as likely to influence voters as specific policy preferences.