Doug Ford’s Tories (40%, +1) Open Double-Digit Lead over Horwath’s NDP (28%), while Wynne’s Liberals (27%, -5) Slide

19-Point Lead in the 905 would Propel Progressive Conservatives to Majority Government

The author(s)

  • Darrell Bricker Global CEO, Public Affairs
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Toronto, Ontario, April 10, 2018 — Doug Ford’s Progressive Conservatives have opened up a double-digit lead over both Horwath’s NDP and Wynne’s Liberals, according to a new Ipsos poll conducted on behalf of Global News. Moreover, a nineteen-point lead for the Tories in the “905” region surrounding Toronto would propel them easily into majority territory.

If the election were held tomorrow, the Progressive Conservatives would receive 40% of the decided vote, up 1 point since Ipsos’ last poll released mid-March. Despite delivering a budget filled with spending promises designed to woo voters, the incumbent Liberals would receive 27% of the vote, down a significant 5 points. The New Democratic Party would receive 28% of the vote, up 3 points. Other parties, including the Green Party, would receive 5% of vote support (up 2 points). Nearly two in ten say they’re not sure who they would vote for (15%), while six percent (6%) wouldn’t vote.

The most telling result of the survey is the huge lead that the Tories enjoy in the key swing region of the 905, which is also the region of Ontario with the greatest number of seats:
• In the 905, the Tories (45%) have a massive lead over the Liberals (26%) and the NDP (24%) who would split the vote, likely resulting in a near sweep of seats in the region for the PCs. Five percent (5%) would vote for some other party.
• In the 416, Toronto proper, the Liberals (38%) have a five-point lead over the Tories (33%), who have a five-point lead over the NDP (28%). Just 2% would vote for some other party.
• In Southwestern Ontario, the PCs (39%) are leading the second-place NDP (31%), while the Liberals (22%) and others (8%) trail.
• In Central Ontario, the PCs (57%) have their biggest lead across the province, placing well ahead of the Liberals (22%), NDP (20%), and others (2%).
• In Eastern Ontario, the PCs (39%) lead the Liberals (34%), NDP (25%) and others (1%).
• In Northern Ontario, the NDP (45%) retains its traditional lead over the PCs (28%), Liberals (11%) and others (16%).

The Progressive Conservatives are also ahead of their rivals among other key demographic voting groups, with Millennials being the only exception:
• Among men, the Tories (40%) have a double-digit lead over the Liberals (29%) and NDP (27%).
• Among women, the Tories (40%) have a double-digit lead over the NDP (29%) and Liberals (25%).
• Among those aged 55+, the Tories (50%) have an overwhelming lead over the Liberals and NDP (22% apiece).
• Among those aged 35-54, the PC’s (43%) advantage over the NDP (28%) and Liberals (26%) is also strong.
• Among those aged 18-34, the Liberals (36%) and NDP (35%) are fighting for the same base, while the PCs (24%) are behind.

Given these results, it’s not surprising that a growing proportion (60%, up 7 points) of Ontarians now believe that the Progressive Conservative Party poses the best chance of defeating Kathleen Wynne and the Liberal Party in the upcoming election. Just two in ten (22%, down 1 point) believe the best chance for change rests with the NDP, while 18% (down 5 points) insist that the Liberals will be re-elected.

Budget Fails to Change Voters’ Minds about Wynne

A Liberal budget filled with election-spending goodies has failed to change the minds of Ontarians. Since last wave of research, there has been a firming of beliefs that now is the time for change at Queen’s Park.

Just three in ten (30%) ‘approve’ (6% strongly/24% somewhat) of the performance of the Liberal government under Premier Kathleen Wynne, down 6 points since mid-March. Conversely, seven in ten (70%) ‘disapprove’ (43% strongly/28% somewhat) in the Wynne government’s performance, up 6 points.

A growing majority (77%, up 3 points) believe that it is time for another political party to take over, while just 23% (down 3 points) believe that the incumbent Liberal government has done a good job and deserves re-election.

Andrea Horwath (39%, down 2) continues to resonate as the Party leader who would make the best Premier of Ontario, although Doug Ford is now statistically tied (37%, up 1 point) with her. In comparison, one quarter (24%, up 1 point) believes that Kathleen Wynne would make the best Premier of Ontario.

Ontarians continue to have a sour impression of the Premier. While Doug Ford is certainly divisive, he continues to enjoy significantly more personal popularity than the Premier. Andrea Horwath is viewed the most favourably from among the major party leaders – her favourability ratings are higher than the Prime Ministers’ own ratings, while having less than half his proportion of unfavourable ratings.

Party Leader

% favourable

(change since March)

% neutral

(change since March)

% unfavourable

(change since March)

Don’t Know

Kathleen Wynne

20% (-3)

14% (--)

62% (+2)

4% (+1)

Doug Ford

32% (-1)

21% (+1)

40% (-1)

7% (+1)

Andrea Horwath

39% (--)

36% (--)

14% (--)

11% (+1)

Justin Trudeau

40% (-5)

19% (+4)

37% (--)

3% (+1)


About the Study

These are some of the findings of an Ipsos poll conducted between April 6 and 9, 2018, on behalf of Global News. For this survey, a sample of 800 Ontarians aged 18+ from Ipsos' online panel was interviewed online, supplemented by river-based sampling. Weighting was then employed to balance demographics to ensure that the sample's composition reflects that of the adult population according to Census data and to provide results intended to approximate the sample universe. The precision of Ipsos online polls is measured using a credibility interval. In this case, the poll is accurate to within ±4.0 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, had all Ontarian adults been polled. The credibility interval will be wider among subsets of the population. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to coverage error, and measurement error.

For more information on this news release, please contact:
Darrell Bricker, CEO
Ipsos Global Public Affairs
+1 416 324 2001

About Ipsos Public Affairs

Ipsos Public Affairs is a non-partisan, objective, survey-based research practice made up of seasoned professionals. We conduct strategic research initiatives for a diverse number of Canadian American and international organizations, based not only on public opinion research, but elite stakeholder, corporate, and media opinion research.
Ipsos has media partnerships with the most prestigious news organizations around the world. In Canada, Ipsos Public Affairs is the polling partner for Global News. Internationally, Ipsos Public Affairs is the media polling supplier to Reuters News, the world's leading source of intelligent information for businesses and professionals. Ipsos Public Affairs is a member of the Ipsos Group, a leading global survey-based market research company. We provide boutique-style customer service and work closely with our clients, while also undertaking global research.

About Ipsos

Ipsos is an independent market research company controlled and managed by research professionals. Founded in France in 1975, Ipsos has grown into a worldwide research group with a strong presence in all key markets. Ipsos ranks fourth in the global research industry.
With offices in 88 countries, Ipsos delivers insightful expertise across five research specializations: brand, advertising and media; customer loyalty; marketing; public affairs research; and survey management.
Ipsos researchers assess market potential and interpret market trends. They develop and build brands. They help clients build long-term relationships with their customers. They test advertising and study audience responses to various media and they measure public opinion around the globe.
Ipsos has been listed on the Paris Stock Exchange since 1999 and generated global revenues of €1,782.7 million in 2016.

The author(s)

  • Darrell Bricker Global CEO, Public Affairs