Surging NDP Poised for Potential Majority in Manitoba Election, New Poll Suggests

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New polling projections unveiled Wednesday show an ascendant NDP in Manitoba. Almost half of predetermined and leaning voters are anticipated to back the NDP in the upcoming election.

As of June, the NDP and Progressive Conservatives were neck and neck, each garnering 41% of public support. However, the trends have since shifted, with the PCs falling to 38%, while the NDP has risen to 49%. In comparison, the Manitoba Liberals hold only 9% of the vote. About 11% of the population remain undecided.

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The extrapolated data reveals a robust lead for the NDP, hinting towards a potential majority government victory on October 3rd. Particularly within Winnipeg, the NDP possesses a considerable lead against the incumbent PCs, with 57% to 28% respectively. The Liberals’ support in Winnipeg, at 11%, is slightly higher than their overall provincial backing.

However, the division within the various districts of the city tells an important story. Across every single quadrant, the NDP leads. The tightest competition lies in the northwest, with the NDP slightly ahead at 45%, followed by the Tories at 42%. The Liberals trail behind the Green Party with 5% to the latter’s 6% respectively.

The biggest deviation occurs within the city centre. A dominant 68% of residents back the NDP, while the PCs and Liberals are tightly matched for second place, the former at 15% and the latter at 13%. The northeast sees a 60-30 divide in favour of the NDP, and the Liberals stand at 5%. In south Winnipeg, both quadrants have the NDP at the helm with 55%, while the PCs are at 24% in the west and 30% in the east. The Liberals secure 18% in the west and 14% in the east.

9% of Winnipeg inhabitants state that they are undecided regarding their vote. Comparisons between the 2019 election and the current situation suggest increasing support for the NDP. Half of the Liberal voters and 16% of Conservative voters from the last election are reportedly planning to flip their support for the NDP this year.

Alongside the popularity of the parties, the poll assessed public opinion regarding party leaders. With an approval rating of 51%, NDP’s Wab Kinew’s performance is regarded as most satisfactory. Following Kinew is Liberal Dougal Lamont at 38%. Heather Stefanson from the PC ranks last, with a 32% approval rating and a worryingly high disapproval rating at 48%.

Kinew also leaves behind a more favourable impression than Stefanson, edging up by five points, while Stefanson has seen a decline of 23 points. Despite a marginal gain of one point, Lamont’s public image remains mostly unchanged.

The NDP is also showing strong support among different voter demographics. It fares significantly well with female voters, securing 59% support compared to 38% among male voters. Likewise, in terms of age, the NDP shows widespread popularity. The 55-plus crowd, though, leans slightly towards the PCs with 44% compared to NDP’s 43%. The Liberals enjoy their highest support amidst the 55-plus demographic, standing at 11%.

Moreover, regardless of income brackets, the NDP maintains near 50% support. The PCs, on the other hand, witness a range of 31 to 38% support among different income categories. Among the educated voters, University graduates significantly lean towards the NDP, while college or other post-secondary graduates mildly favour the PCs. Those with a high school level education or less also slightly prefer the Conservatives.

In terms of ethnicity, those identifying as Indigenous or BIPOC overwhelmingly support the NDP. However, the growing support for the NDP, albeit substantial, is not set in stone. As events unfold in the run-up to the election, the tables could turn.

The NDP sees the rising numbers as a verdict from Manitobans for change and remains committed to keeping the momentum until election day. On the other hand, the PCs express surprise at the numbers, contending that the figures don’t match the support they experience through direct interaction with constituents. They maintain their focus on winning the necessary seats and are confident in their strategy. The Manitoba Liberals have yet to respond to the findings.

The poll, which surveyed 1,000 people across the province between September 7 and 18, projects these figures with 95% certainty with an possible error margin of ±3.1 percentage points.

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Melinda Cochrane is a poet, teacher and fiction author. She is also the editor and publisher of The Inspired Heart, a collection of international writers. Melinda also runs a publishing company, Melinda Cochrane International books for aspiring writers, based out Montreal, Quebec. Her publication credits include: The art of poetic inquiry, (Backalong Books), a novella, Desperate Freedom, (Brian Wrixon Books Canada), and 2 collections of poetry; The Man Who Stole Father’s Boat, (Backalong Books), and She’s an Island Poet, Desperate Freedom was on the bestseller's list for one week, and The Man Who Stole Father’s Boat is one of hope and encouragement for all those living in the social welfare system. She’s been published in online magazines such as, (regular writer for) ‘Life as a Human’, and Shannon Grissom’s magazine.