Hot off the wires following the release of the Ontario budget yesterday is a poll by EKOS Research that might give Andrea Horwath pause as she considers whether or not to send Ontarians to the polls this spring.
The poll by EKOS Research for iPolitics gives the Liberals the lead with 34.7% support, up 2.4 points from EKOS's previous poll of March 27-April 3. The Progressive Conservatives were also up, gaining 4.2 points to reach 31.6%.
The New Democrats, however, fell 6.8 points to 22.2%.
The Greens were up 1.1 points to 9.4%, while 2% of respondents said they would vote for another party. Of the entire sample, 18.9% were undecided.
Only the drop in support of the NDP appears to be statistically significant, though it also looks a lot like a reset. EKOS's previous poll had the New Democrats at 29%, well above the 22% to 23% recorded in subsequent polls by Forum, Nanos, and Innovative. It does differ, however, from the 27% recorded in the most recent Ipsos Reid poll, but even Ipsos was registering a slip in support for the NDP from their own previous poll.
For the Liberals and PCs, the picture remains muddy. Of the five surveys now conducted since April 7, the PCs have recorded (in order of field dates) 38%, 36%, 30%, 37%, and 32%. The Liberals have recorded 31%, 36%, 39%, 32%, and 35%. Overall, the Liberals and PCs seem to be somewhere in the 30s. That is about as much as can be said with certainty. The aggregate now gives the Liberals 34% to 33% for the Tories.
Of significance, however, may be the Tories' lead among the oldest voters. Of Ontarians aged 65 or older, the PCs held a 40% to 36% edge over the Liberals. Among the next oldest tranche of respondents between the ages of 45 and 64, the Liberals and PCs were almost tied (33% to 32%, respectively). This suggests the Tories may have a turnout advantage (which Ipsos Reid also recorded in their poll).
EDIT: Libs called the election.