The EKOS poll, commissioned for the CBC and released Thursday, shows the Tories with 34.2 per cent support, followed by the Liberals with 30.8 per cent, a bigger gap between the two parties than any seen all summer.
The New Democratic Party follows with 14.8 per cent support, while the Green Party has 10.1 per cent and the Bloc Québécois with 10 per cent.
A 3.4% margin now, what was a tie in last week's poll. Of note, while the Liberal number is down week to week, it's current position is identical with what EKOS had shown for the entire month of August. In other words, hardly indicative of too much from the Liberal perspective. However, as we've seen in other polls, EKOS detects a Conservative uptick. One caveat, in this poll the Conservative gain does come at the expense of the Liberals.
A tight race in Ontario:
Cons 38.4% (33.1%)
Libs 36.5% (40.4%)
NDP 13.7% (15.6%)
Greens 11.4% (10.9%)
A solid rise for the Conservatives, again we've seen this from other pollsters. Another poor result for the NDP in crucial Ontario.
In Quebec, EKOS shows improved numbers for the Bloc:
Bloc 39.8% (32.8%)
Libs 27.8% (30.9%)
Cons 15.5% (19.4%)
Greens 7% (7.6%)
That is a large gap for the Bloc, maybe a touch high, but probably indicative of some movement. The Bloc seems to be drawing votes from both principle federalist parties.
EKOS also shows a statistical tie in British Columbia between the Conservatives and Liberals, NDP well back. These results are quite similar to other pollsters, which starts to make this high MOE regional more believable.
EKOS gives the Conservatives a huge advantage in Sask/Man, approaching 50%. A tie in Atlantic Canada, with the NDP right there.
All in all, not a great poll for the Liberals, obviously. It's hard to say anything conclusive based on one poll, but with the slew of releases in the past few days, there does seem to be some general trends evident. I was expecting some "blowback" from the Liberal election talk, and this finally seems to be manifesting itself, mostly in the form of Conservative uptick. The NDP's perceived weakness does seem to be hurting them slightly. The Liberals are stagnant to marginally off, with no momentum.
From the Liberal perspective, we aren't taking a big hit for threatening an election. Also, we are talking about a miniscule gap at the moment, so it's hardly a cause for really worry. The name of the game at the moment, get over the initial election outrage in a relatively positive position. The polls are vacilliating, so you look for top end/low end numbers, when speaking about electoral potential. The Liberals have hit 37-38% in the recent past, bottom seems to be around 30%. Almost the exact situation for the Conservatives, so it all comes down to this small pool of voters that flip, and only a campaign will determine where they go. While the poll trends aren't positive at the moment, I'm more focused on what's available during the election, we can erase and reverse this slight gap with little movement. Bottomline.