Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Tim Hudak still the man to beat

The gap is narrowing, but Tim Hudak is still the man to beat in this fall's Ontario election. 

A new poll by Forum Research puts Hudak's Progressive Conservatives at 38 per cent support, 10 points ahead of the governing Liberals.

Not far behind Dalton McGuinty are the New Democrats, who stand at 24 per cent.

This represents a gain of two points apiece for the Liberals and NDP compared to Forum's last poll conducted in June, while the Tories have dropped three points. 

You can read the rest of the article on The Huffington Post Canada website. A seat projection for the Forum poll accompanies the article.

Normally around this time, I would post the monthly federal poll averages. However, no federal polls were released during the month of July, so unless something appears soon that was taken before Monday it doesn't look like there will be any federal numbers to report.

I doubt this will be the case for much longer. It is astonishing to think that in little more than a week Jack Layton temporarily stepped down as leader, the party named a new interim leader, and that leader, Nycole Turmel, was then raked over the coals for her past with the Bloc Québécois and Québec Solidaire.

Obviously, the federal political situation has changed significantly in the last 10 days. But most people pay little attention to federal politics and even fewer are tuned in during the height of summer. Nevertheless, with the New Democrats going through recent events I imagine we will see a few polls being released in the next week. I also imagine even the slightest dip in NDP support will be attributed to Ms. Turmel.

But is this the work of a slow political summer? When Jack Layton returns, will anyone care about what happened with the former interim leader? More to the point, will this matter in 2015? I would wager that it will not, though it could potentially by the first in a long list of issues the NDP could have with its new Quebec caucus. It is almost unavoidable that a coalition of progressive federalists, nationalists, and sovereigntists, which is what the NDP appears to be in Quebec, will be somewhat tumultuous. But, really, that is par for the course in political Quebec.