The Green search for a second seat
Parry Sound–Muskoka is the Greens' best chance at doubling their caucus
The big storylines in the Ontario election campaign are pretty obvious — will the Progressive Conservatives get another majority government and will it be the Liberals or the New Democrats who finish second?
But I always like looking for the “B Plot” in any election. In this one, that might be whether or not the Greens will succeed in winning a second seat.
Signs of momentum in this campaign have been few and far between. But if any party is having a good election, it might be Mike Schreiner’s Greens.
In the weeks and months before this campaign kicked off, the Greens were routinely polling around 4% or 5%, matching their middling performance in the 2018 election of 4.6%. These days, the Greens are polling between 5% and 8% — a marginal increase but better than any gains the other parties have shown.
Last week’s debate appears to have helped the Greens. They’ve gained an average of about two points across pollsters who were in the field both just before and just after the debate. According to a survey by Abacus Data, 45% of Ontarians who watched the debate had a positive impression of Schreiner, against only 16% who had a negative one. That was the best net positive rating of all four leaders.
Greens up in the north and southwest
The Greens are not spiking across the province, however. In most regions in the CBC Poll Tracker, the Greens are registering between 5% and 6% support. But they are polling at 8% in the southwest (a region that includes Mike Schreiner’s riding of Guelph) and 9.5% in northern Ontario.