Attack ads hurting PC female voter base: poll
Brown’s approval rating among Ontario women drops to 15% from 22%
An onslaught of union-funded attack ads aimed at Patrick Brown appears to be hurting the Progressive Conservatives with female voters, a new poll suggests.
The blitz of negative commercials from public- and private-sector unions seems to have tightened an already close race in the June 7, election.
The Campaign Research survey shows Brown’s PCs at 35 per cent, Premier Kathleen Wynne’s Liberals at 32 per cent, Andrea Horwath’s New Democrats at 23 per cent and the Greens led by Mike Schreiner at 9 per cent.
“The ‘third-party’ ads are all targeted toward women and it appears to be having a strong effect on (female) voters,” Campaign Research CEO Eli Yufest said Thursday.
Using an online panel of1,263 Ontario voters, Campaign Research polled between Monday and Thursday.
A probability sample of that size would have a margin of error of plus or minus 2.8 percentage points, 19 out of 20 times.
In last month’s tracking poll, the Tories were at 36 per cent, the Liberals 32 per cent, the NDP 25 per cent and the Greens at 7 per cent.
Yufest said the “most significant” change in the November survey is the effect of the attack advertising on Brown’s personal approval ratings.
The spots are by Working Ontario Women, bankrolled by the Service International Employees Union and Working Families, a coalition of public- and private-sector unions that includes Unifor.
They blast the rookie PC leader for his anti-abortion voting record as an MP in former prime minister Stephen Harper’s Conservative government between 2006 and 2015 and question his claim of now being “prochoice.”
This month’s poll found Brown has a 21 per cent approval, 29 per cent disapproval, with 50 per cent having no opinion.
In September, he had 25 per cent approval, 25 per cent disapproval and 50 per cent didn’t know.
But among female voters, Brown’s approval rating has dropped to15 per cent from 22 per cent a month ago and to 27 per cent from 28 per cent among males.
Wynne’s personal approval ratings remain the lowest of the three major party leaders.
She has a rock-bottom 16 per cent approval rating, 65 per cent disapproval and 19 per cent weren’t sure.