Manitoba NDP Poised for Majority With Surge in Polls Ahead of Election Day

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Fresh polling numbers reveal an upswing in support for Manitoba’s New Democratic Party (NDP). Almost half of decided or potential voters are tipped to cast their ballots in favour of the NDP, suggesting a potential majority come Election Day.

As of June, the NDP and Progressive Conservatives (PCs) were neck-and-neck, with equal support at 41%. However, the landscape has changed in recent weeks. The PCs’ backing has moderately slipped to 38% while the NDP has advanced to 49%. In contrast, the Manitoba Liberals remain somewhat stagnant at a modest 9%.

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Undecisiveness prevails throughout the province with 11% of the populace yet undecided about where their loyalty lies.

According to Scott MacKay from Probe Research, current data is leaning towards an NDP majority on October 3. Particularly strong NDP support is demonstrated within the city limits of Winnipeg. Among the city’s denizens, the NDP takes a sizeable lead over the PCs, recording 57% support against the incumbent’s 28%. The Liberals fare marginally better in Winnipeg, achieving an 11% backing.

A closer examination of Winnipeg voting intentions reveals the NDP ahead in each quadrant of the city, albeit with varying leads. In the closest contest, that can be found in the northwest, the NDP marginally outstrips the Tories with 45% to 42% support, whereas the Liberals trail behind the Green Party whose six per cent exceeds the former’s five per cent.

In the city’s heart, the NDP triumphs convincingly with an impressive 68% backing. The PCs and Liberals jostle for second place, landing 15% and 13% respectively. A similar picture is painted in the northeastern and southern quadrants where the NDP maintains its lead.

Prior to the Election announcement, south Winnipeg was identified as a crucial battleground due to seats known to swing in favour of either party. The NDP has emerged as the clear winner in these regions, garnering strong support.

The data also reveals one in ten Winnipeggers are uncertain about who they will ultimately vote for.

Historical voting patterns offer some reasoning behind the NDP’s increased support. Half of the participants who voted for the Liberals in 2019 announced they would be switching allegiance to the NDP in the upcoming election. Additionally, 16% of previous Conservative voters have also chosen to pivot their votes towards the NDP.

The role of party leaders in influencing voter sentiments cannot be underestimated. When polled about their approval of each party leader’s performance, NDP’s Wab Kinew gained the highest approval rating at 51%, followed by Liberal Dougal Lamont’s respectable 38%. Troublesome times lie ahead for PC’s Heather Stefanson, who ranks in third place with a 32% rating and records the highest disapproval rate, with nearly half of polled Manitobans expressing a strong disapproval of her job performance.

Notably, polling data highlights a robust spread of NDP support across most demographics and income brackets across Manitoba. Furthermore, the NDP is also favoured by Indigenous or BIPOC voters. However, caution is advised as data only provides a snapshot and changes can occur on the road to the polls.

Upon receiving the poll results, an NDP spokesperson claimed that Manitoba’s increasing support reflected acknowledgment of the necessity for government change to reform the health-care system. They acknowledged the hard work of their party thus far while reaffirming their continued commitment across the campaign trail.

In contrast, the PC campaign manager, Marni Larkin, expressed her surprise at the results, insisting they did not align with the campaign’s felt presence at the door. She expressed confidence in the seats they needed to win and declared their unwavering resolve to remain focused on their goals.

The Manitoba Liberals have not yet responded to the poll results.

This poll was conducted between Sept. 7 and 18, 2023, based on a sample size of 1000 individuals throughout Manitoba, and carries a margin of error of ±3.1 percentage points with 95% confidence.