Toronto mayoral candidate Olivia Chow continues to lead the pack with less than a month until voters cast their ballot, according to two new polls released on Monday.
Among decided voters surveyed by Liaison Strategies on Friday and Saturday, 30 per cent chose Chow to be the mayor.
“Olivia Chow has grown her support this week with 30 per cent support among decided voters – but she’s also grown her lead,” David Valentin, principal at Liaison Strategies, said in a news release.
She is followed by Mark Saunders and Mitzie Hunter, who are tied for second with 14 per cent support. Saunders saw a three percentage point drop from last week’s poll.
Valentin said time is running out for the other candidates to “claw” into Chow’s lead.
“It’s clear from the debates that took place last week that candidates are aiming their attacks in all directions but particularly at Olivia Chow. That should come as no surprise as there is almost no way for any of the other candidates to win without somehow lowering her level of support,” he said.
In fourth place is Josh Matlow with 11 per cent of support. Behind him are Ana Bailao and Brad Bradford, who are tied with “someone else.”
“Notably, this week our ‘Someone Else’ option gained significant traction, going from five per cent to 10 per cent among decided voters. It will take another week or two to see if this is the start of a trend or if it is statistical noise,” Valentin said.
Meanwhile, 27 per cent of those surveyed have not yet picked a candidate to support.
Another poll released on Monday also has Chow in the lead. According to Forum Research, 34 per cent of decided and leaning voters support her.
In the second spot — trailing Chow by 20 percentage points — is Saunders with 14 per cent, followed by Matlow with 12 per cent. There is a three-way tie for fourth, with Hunter, Furey and Bailao garnering nine per cent support.
“We’re now seeing five weeks of fairly consistent results among the top three candidates,” said Dr. Lorne Bozinoff, president of Forum Research. “However, with a month left in the campaign, there’s still time for surprises.”
Housing affordability remains the top issue among those surveyed. It is followed by the cost of living and inflation; city infrastructure, services and taxes; traffic, congestion and transit; and crime and gun violence.
While election day is on June 26, voters can cast their ballot during advancing voting, which takes place from June 8 to 13.
Liaison Strategies, which conducted the poll for the National Ethnic
Press and Media Council of Canada, surveyed a random sample of 1,305 Toronto residents from May 26 to May 27.
It used Interactive Voice Recording. Respondents were screened for voter eligibility.
The margin of error is +/- 2.71 percentage points, 19 times out of 20 for the total.
Meanwhile, Forum Research conducted an interactive voice response telephone survey of 1,007 randomly selected Toronto residents over the age of 18 on May 16.
The results based on the total sample are considered accurate +/- three per cent, 19 times out of 20.