Ford-pocalypse: poll shows Rob Ford destroying the competition—even downtown
After weeks of the election being dominated by campaign stunts and debates that the press barely pretend to pay attention to anymore, Toronto woke up on Monday (or sat down to dinner Sunday, for the obsessives like us) to the news that if Toronto’s election were held today, Rob Ford would win by a landslide. The Etobicoke councillor is leading George Smitherman 46 to 21 , with the other candidates trailing even farther behind. We already knew that Ford was running up a huge score, but what’s really surprising here is how well Ford is doing south of Eglinton.
According to the Globe and Mail:
But the poll turns that narrative on its head: It finds Mr. Ford is actually leading the former provincial deputy premier in the old City of Toronto with the support of 37.2 per cent of decided voters compared to 30.3 per cent for Mr. Smitherman and 19.5 per cent for [Joe] Pantalone, the deputy mayor and torchbearer for David Miller.
In fact, Mr. Ford is the first choice of voters in every part of the megacity.
For all the talk from other candidates about how divisive Ford has been, it looks like Toronto is actually uniting—behind Ford. To put it another way, it looks like voters in the suburbs are just like voters downtown, except more so: the anger that Ford has tapped into (his critics would say he’s helped generate it) is actually a big deal, whether you drive or take the streetcars Ford so loathes. That’s bad news for other candidates, but the nightmare scenario of a massive urban-suburban split just doesn’t seem to be happening.
Smitherman, Pantalone and Rocco Rossi are no doubt hoping this poll is a sign of Ford peaking early. Much of this election has been spent “waiting until Labour Day” when, we were told, voters would take a good look at Ford and recoil. Instead, as Marcus Gee notes, the reverse has happened. The more people see of Ford, the more they like him.
Predictably, the Smitherman campaign is calling for strategic voting, hoping Toronto will rally around the one candidate they say can beat Ford. The problem is that Smitherman has such a high mountain to climb: Ford only needs another five per cent of the vote before he’d be unbeatable, and he’d probably get that big a bump from people who might have voted for Sarah Thomson or Rossi.
There are still five weeks left in this election, but it’s difficult to imagine what could hurt Ford at this point. We’ve already seen his one-note debate performances, his low-budget commercials and his mug shot. If none of these have taken the candidate down, what could?
• Toronto mayoral race is Rob Ford’s to lose, poll of decided voters says [Globe and Mail]
• The more they see of Ford, the more they like him [Globe and Mail]
• Rob Ford opens huge lead in mayor’s race [Toronto Star]
• Ford surges ahead at 45.8% support, new poll shows [National Post]
• Ford takes big lead — Polls [Toronto Sun]
• Can you say Fordamania? [Toronto Sun]
• Support for Ford is spreading across Toronto: poll [CTV News]
4 thoughts on “Ford-pocalypse: poll shows Rob Ford destroying the competition—even downtown”
How about the fact that 25 percent of voters are undecided? Or that if you compare apples to apples (ie, not mixing up polls whose universes are decided rather than likely voters) that Ford support has been unchanged since mid-August, along with the proportion of undecideds?
The Ford/Not Ford generic options have polled almost exactly the same for a month. Difference is that ‘Not Ford’ is now more fragmented than it was.
What I find more shocking than a huge Rob Ford lead is that in the self proclaimed “most multicultural” city in the world, the mayoral candidates are anything but.
The only reason Rob Ford is SURGING in the polls is because Mike Strobel at The Toronto Sun ran an article and political cartoon on the entire 3rd page on September 5th on how “Dimitri The Lover” was the first “celebrity endorsement” of the campaign. Dimitri came out heavily in favour of Rob Ford and trashed Sarah Thomson for not tipping barristas at cafes. The Torontoist published the complete douchey endorsement. My cousin works at the Ford campaign and they were flooded with calls from fans of “Dimitri The Lover” offering new support for Rob Ford on the “douche platform” Dimitri laid out in his endorsement press release. Also, today “Dimitri The Lover” took full responsibility for the surge on Twitter!
Here is the complete Ford endorsement by Dimitri The Lover,
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