Tory's subway to success
Mayor John Tory speaks about the Scarborough subway at the Scarborough Business Association's annual Mayor's Lunch on March 27, 2017. (Michael Peake/Toronto Sun)
Mayor John Tory and the Scarborough subway are riding high with Toronto voters, a new Campaign Research poll concludes.
Six in 10 polled approve of the job Tory is doing, compared to roughly three in 10 who give a thumb’s up to potential mayoral candidate Doug Ford.
Campaign Research CEO Eli Yufest said the mayor’s “get-it-done” approach to politics is winning fans.
Despite his well-publicized squabble with Premier Kathleen Wynne over tolls and transit funding, Tory’s support of the Scarborough subway and his willingness to work with the region on transit development are well received by the public, Yufest said.
“It’s all of these things related to transit that’s driving a lot of support to him,” he said. “People fundamentally just want things to get done, really.
“They want transit to be approved — we hear that time and again that transit is the No. 1 city issue for them.”
When it comes to the controversial Scarborough subway extension, 60% of Torontonians are supportive, 20% disapprove and 21% have no opinion, Campaign Research found.
Toronto Council voted in favour of the project as recently as March, but Tory has accused opponents of trying to bring it to a halt at every turn in the debate.
“The issue at city council is probably a bit of a disconnect because while the politicians and the council are debating it, the people have already decided,” Yufest said. “They want it.”
Torontonians most likely to back the Scarborough subway are aged 45-54, while older and well-off residents tend to disapprove of it.
Tory’s support is found largely among older residents, the least wealthy and provincial Liberal supporters.
Although 60% approved of his job performance, 54% said they’d vote for him if an election were held tomorrow.
The same poll found that Councillor Mike Layton would get the nod from 14% of the electorate. Ford, who had an approval rating of 32%, would get 22% of the vote.
“He’s been relatively quiet over the last little while and out of sight, out of mind,” Yufest said of Ford. “If he maintains that, I wouldn’t be surprised if we saw the numbers keep as they are or even decline somewhat.”
The online poll of 458 residents — conducted on May 9-13 — has a margin of error of 5%, 19 times out of 20.