40% of Ontario voters think Doug Ford is best suited for Prime Minister: Ipsos poll

With less than a week to go before Election Day, a new poll shows that four in 10 Ontarions think progressive conservative leader Doug Ford would become the best prime minister for the province.

The poll, conducted by Ipsos exclusively for Global News, found that 40 percent of respondents said Doug Ford is the best person for the job, down one point from earlier this month.

Meanwhile, 29 percent of respondents said Andrea Horwath, the leader of Ontario’s new Democratic Party, would be Ontario’s top prime minister, while 22 percent said the same of Liberal leader Steven Del Duca.

The survey, conducted between April 29 and May 1, found that Ford was more popular with men (46 percent) than with women (34 percent).

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The poll also found that Ford was more popular among older age groups, with 49 percent of over-55s saying he would become the top prime minister. However, that dropped to 40 percent among 35-54 year olds and further to 27 percent among 18 to 34 year olds.

Ford was also more popular among higher-income respondents. The survey found that 46 percent of Ontario earners over $100,000 said they believed Ford would be the best prime minister. That number dropped to 40 percent among those making between $60,000 and less than $100,000, as well as those making $40,000 to less than $60,000. The number dropped to 32 percent among those making less than $40,000.

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Darrell Bricker, CEO of Ipsos Public Affairs, told Global News that Ford “matches his party’s performance”, adding that he is “far ahead” of both Horwath and Del Duca.

“At 40 per cent, he is well ahead of both his competitors, and in fact slightly better than his party’s current performance,” he said, adding that Ford looks “pretty strong”.


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The poll also suggests Andrea Horwath is “safe in second place”.

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The survey found that 38 percent of those with household incomes less than $40,000 said Horwath would become the top prime minister, while 35 percent of those earning $40,000-$60,000 said the same. Thirty-one percent of those earning between $60,000 and $100,000 said they would be the best for the job, but that number dropped to 20 percent among those earning more than $100,000.

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Younger Ontarians were also more likely to say Horwath is best suited for prime minister. The poll found that 41 percent of 18- to 34-year-olds said the NDP leader is best suited for the job. Twenty-nine percent of those in the 35-54 age group said the same thing. Among those over 55, however, that number dropped to 20 percent.

The survey found that support for Del Duca is still higher among women (25 percent) than men (18 percent).

Del Duca was also popular among those making over $100,000 at 27 percent. However, that number dropped to 24 percent among those earning between $60,000 and less than $100,000, and to 16 percent among those earning $40,000-$60,000. Nineteen percent of those earning less than $40,000 said Del Duca is best suited for prime minister.

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Overall, Bricker said the numbers have changed “very, very little” from the start of the campaign.

“All the polls we’ve seen over the course of the campaign — it’s almost like there’s no campaign going on.”


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Bricker said that “almost everything” is a “battle for second place”, adding that Del Duca and Horwath are “both trying to compete to be second best.”

He said: “At this stage of the game, it’s really about who is going to form the official opposition.”

“You have the incumbent NDP members who cling to what used to be liberal rationale,” Bricker explained. “So it will be interesting to see on election night how well Andrea Horwath is able to fight back against the Liberal attacks and whether the Liberals are actually able to make a profit.”

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He said both sides will argue that they are most able to hold the PCs accountable.

“But at this stage of the game, that’s the best they can say,” Bricker said.

Favorable vs. unfavorable

The survey respondents were also asked how favorable each of the party leaders is to them.

The data shows an exciting race between Ford and Horwath.

Thirty-four percent of those surveyed said they find Ford favorable, with 10 percent saying he was “very” favorable and 24 percent saying he was “somewhat favorable.”

Meanwhile, 33 percent said they find Horwath favorable, with 10 percent saying she is “very favorable” and 23 percent saying she is “somewhat favorable.”

Del Duca saw a four point increase in favorableness compared to earlier this month. The survey found that 22 percent of respondents said he is favorable, with four percent saying he was “very favorable” and 18 percent saying he was “somewhat favorable.”

Green Party leader Mike Schreiner saw a nine-point increase: 19 percent now say he is favorable, four percent say he is “very favorable” and 15 percent say he is “somewhat favorable”.

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The poll also found that unfavorableness has increased for all candidates.

In addition, 56 percent of Ontarios said they wish there were several party leaders to choose from in this election.

A total of 46 percent of those polled said they have an unfavorable opinion of Doug Ford, up three points from earlier this month.


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Meanwhile, 36 percent said Horwath is unfavorable, up seven points from earlier this month. Del Duca also saw a seven point jump to 35 percent, while Schreiner saw a four point jump to 20 percent.

Bricker usually said in an election campaign “one’s performance goes forward.”

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“But all three leaders are not particularly impressive, so the status quo – and that is the Prime Minister – is what is moving forward here, so none of its competitors have been able to influence the campaign in a positive way,” he explained. †

“As a result, we see their negative numbers increase more than their positive numbers.”

METHODOLOGY: This Ipsos survey was commissioned by Global News between April 29 and May 1. For this study, a sample of n = 1,501 Ontarians aged 18 years and older were interviewed online (1,001) and by phone (500). Quotas and weighting were used to balance demographics to ensure that the sample composition reflects that of the population according to the census information. The precision of Ipsos online polls is measured using a credibility interval. In this case, the poll is accurate to ±2.9 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, of what the results would be if all Ontarios had been polled. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including but not limited to coverage errors and measurement errors.

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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