Ford would be no match for Tory: Poll
John Tory and Doug Ford in heated debate at George Brown College in Toronto during the mayoral race on October 8, 2014. (Craig Robertson/Toronto Sun)
Mayor John Tory will cruise to an easy victory if former city councillor Doug Ford runs against him in the next election, according to a poll.
But the Forum Research survey, provided exclusively to the Toronto Sun, shows that Tory’s commanding lead over former mayor Rob Ford’s brother has narrowed slightly, down to 16 points in March from 19 points in January.
Tory leads with 48% support, while Ford, who ran unsuccessfully against Tory in 2014, has 32%. About 19% prefer a candidate other than Tory or Ford.
Tory’s lead has dropped slightly from a late January poll which put Tory at 49% support and Ford at 30%. In that survey, 21% preferred another candidate.
Forum Research president Lorne Bozinoff said the numbers look good for Tory, but with Ford still coy about where he plans to run in the 2018 municipal election, things could change.
“Doug Ford has basically got Ford Nation,” Bozinoff said. “We’ve said all along Ford Nation is about a third of the city. In all the numbers, he does seem to have a third of the city. But ... he’s got to get about 10% of the swing voters.
“The thing about John Tory, he’s starting to get a little bit of baggage, but generally he’s doing a very good job.”
Tory has said he will seek run in 2018. He has been clear that this will be his final term at City Hall.
Ford, meanwhile, has been hard to pin down, hinting he may run provincially for the Progressive Conservatives in 2018 or could challenge Tory in the municipal vote.
Bozinoff said Ford not being involved in day-to-day municipal political scene hurts him.
“To beat John Tory he has to be here,” he said. “There’s no party label, it’s all just you versus the other guy.”
The poll also shows Tory leading in Etobicoke and Scarborough — key suburbs Ford would have to win in order to become mayor.
The Forum poll also says Tory’s overall approval rating is up from the previous month, jumping five points from 46% in February to 51% in March.
The poll, conducted March 8-10, was an interactive voice response telephone survey of 996 Toronto voters. Forum considers the results accurate within 3%, 19 times out of 20.