October 8, 2015 (Toronto, ON) – With less than two weeks to go, a new set of five Mainstreet/Postmedia riding polls in the National Capital Region finds three races too close to call. The Liberals are locked in a tight battle with the Conservatives for Nepean and Kanata-Carleton, and the NDP for Pontiac. Things are less tight in Ottawa West—Nepean and Ottawa Centre, with the Liberals holding a commanding lead in the former and the NDP comfortably ahead in the latter.
“In Pontiac, the race between the Liberals and NDP is too close to call,” continued Maggi. “NDP incumbent Mathieu Ravignat (28%) is only a single point above Liberal candidate Will Amos (27%). With Conservative candidate Benjamin Woodman polling at only 17%, it’s clear that voters in Pontiac want change, but haven’t made a clear decision as whether the NDP or Liberals represents the best shift in direction. Add the fact that it was Conservative up until 2011, and Pontiac is definitely a riding worth watching.”
“Paul Dewar looks safe in Ottawa Centre, despite an energetic campaign from the Liberals” remarked Maggi. “The incumbent MP leads Liberal challenger Catherine McKenna 42% to 30% among decided and leaning voters, while Conservative candidate Damian Konstantinakos brings up the rear with 22%. With Dewar looking comfortable, the one wild card in this race is that only half of each party’s supporters describe their support as “strong.” If the NDP continues to decline, this seat could be in play. But for now, Dewar’s popularity is holding.”
“With a nearly 20-point lead, Liberal candidate Anita Vandenbeld looks set to take Ottawa West-Nepean,” predicted Maggi. Vandenbeld tops Conservative candidate Abdul Abdi 47% to 29% among decided and leaning voters in the riding formerly held by prominent Conservative cabinet minister John Baird. NDP candidate Marlene Rivier stands at 20%. Vandenbeld should be feeling confident as we approach election day, especially given her commanding lead (54%) among voters ages 50 to 64.”
“Things are going down to the wire in Kanata-Carleton, with a mere two points separating the Conservatives and Liberals”, stated Maggi. “In this new riding, much of which was formerly represented by Chief Government Whip Gordon O’Connor, Conservative candidate Walter Pamic tops Liberal Karen McCrimmon 45% to 43% among decided and leaning voters. At 8%, NDP candidate John Hansen is not a factor. With large numbers of both Liberal and Conservative supports saying they’re “certain” to vote, Kanata-Carleton is an exciting race to watch.”
“Much like their neighbours in Kanata, voters in Nepean are nearly evenly split between the two leading parties,” noted Maggi. “Liberal candidate Chandra Arya (42%) is only a point ahead of Conservative Andy Wang (41%), well within the margin of error. NDP candidate Sean Devine lags at 13%. As in Kanata-Carleton, large numbers of Liberal and Conservative supporters say they’re “certain to vote,” making Nepean another contest to follow on election night.”
Mainstreet is a national public research firm. With 20 years of political experience at all three levels of government, President and CEO Quito Maggi is a respected commentator on Canadian public affairs.
Differentiated by its large sample sizes, Mainstreet has provided accurate snapshots of public opinion, having predicted an NDP majority government in Alberta (2015), a Liberal majority government in British Columbia, and a Liberal majority government in Ontario. Most recently, Mainstreet was the most accurate pollster of last October’s Toronto mayoral election.