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Singh sizzles in English debate, but will NDP momentum solidify, or ultimately fizzle?

Singh’s the thing, at least for now. In a tight federal election campaign that has witnessed few breakout moments or true collapses for the parties and their leaders thus far, NDP leader Jagmeet Singh’s performance in Monday night’s English language leaders debate appears to be having – at minimum – a short-term beneficial impact on New Democrat fortunes.

The latest public opinion survey from the non-profit Angus Reid Institute indicates a three-point bump for the NDP to 17 per cent of leaning and decided voters – the highest the party has been since the writs were drawn. The party now puts more daylight between itself and the Greens, while narrowing what had earlier been a significant gap between itself and the incumbent Liberals.

This move to the left is defined by two factors: Singh’s personal favourability ratings, which continue to exceed that of every other party leader, and the continued, wobbly indefinite vote dynamic evident among those on the left of the political spectrum. Indeed, only one-in-three (32%) NDP supporters say they are “absolutely certain” that the party will earn their choice at the ballot box.

Related: Centre-Left Scuffle

Overall, it is the Conservative Party of Canada that continues to hold a narrow lead over the Liberal Party, 34 per cent to 29 per cent respectively. Recent days have seen declines for the CPC – down three points since last week, while the Liberals stand still – statistically unchanged over the same period of time.

More Key Findings:

  • Jagmeet Singh’s favourability has increased 20 points, from 39 per cent to 59 per cent since the campaign began. Meanwhile, CPC leader Andrew Scheer is down six points in that period to 38 per cent, and Justin Trudeau is unchanged at 35 per cent.
  • NDP support is up significantly among women aged 18-34, but also finds a boost among men over the age of 34. Young people are the same cohort who turned out big for the Liberals in 2015 and propelled Justin Trudeau’s Liberals to victory, but this group traditionally votes at lower rates than the rest of the population.
  • Among voters who have not fully committed to their first-choice party and who say that the Liberals are currently their second choice, six-in-ten (59%) say it is at least somewhat likely that they will support the Liberals.

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