If you’ve been waiting for Nanos, wait no longer


The pollster with a mystic reputation for accuracy has his first tracking poll out, and the numbers are closer than in some other polls: 37% Conservatives, 32% Liberals, 13% NDP. Those NDP numbers are one-third lower than in other recent polls.

I happen to think the Nanos legend is a little exaggerated — there is no such thing as election-prediction accuracy this far out, because there are events — cursed events! Blessed events! — between here and the election day. But I know many of you swear by Nik as by the sun and stars, so I thought you’d want to see this.


If you’ve been waiting for Nanos, wait no longer

  1. With the 2.9% margin, this means that the CPC and LPC are (still) locked in a statistically tie, as are the other 3 parties (NDP 13%, BQ 9%, GP 9%). *yawn*

  2. Excellent news and trend lines are certainly have been and are going in the right direction although I am a Conservative so am probably just a little partisan but … in either event … I am certainly happy than I am not a Liberal anymore as no matter how much you might want to use the numbers to benefit them you can’t really outside of the old margin of error and it’s a statistical tie and other soon to be Liberal Talking Points! Though Paul you have to give Nick some credit as he was the only one as fas as I know that got it right with Harper last time.

  3. Steph, I think you misinterpret the polls. The margin of error here suggests that there is a chance (albeit a pretty small chance) that the Liberals and Conservatives are tied.

  4. 400 people a night. That seems like a small sample to me, but I guess the computers work it out. Still, they are talking to, what, 75 British Columbians a night?

    I still think the big question is if polls are starting to overrepresent rural/older voters, as more and more city dwellers ditch their landlines.

  5. If they are, then the Conservatives are in a bit of trouble. Even as it stands, the Liberals can’t be too dissatisfied with those numbers…the Election Predictor translates that into 125 Con seats, and 122 Liberal seats. And if it’s that close coming up to election day, you’ve got to think that some NDPers may return to the Liberals and push them up a bit. It’s still early, for sure, but I’d say that Harper’s dreams of a majority are looking pretty shaky right now…

  6. Be interesting if the NDP is the party being squeezed, rather than the Liberals.

  7. Yes the trend line is astonishing

    2006 Popular Vote:

    Cons: 36.4% vs 37% in the poll
    Libs: 30.2% vs 32% in the poll
    NDP: 17.5% vs 13% in the poll

    So all talking points aside, what trend, Wayne, are you referring to?

  8. “all talking points aside, Wayne”

    Heh. Good luck with that.

    As for the land-lines vs. cell, I’m not entirely sure that it would mean conservatives are in trouble. I’ve noted a sizable trend toward today’s youth being more conservative oriented.. of course, I live in Calgary, so my observations may not be representative.

  9. I have been tracking nanos the last few months look them up the trends lines are Harper up Dion down! simple.

  10. When you post links, you’ll elevate yourself above Conserva-bot. Until then, I have no reason to believe you have a clue what you’re talking about.

    And today’s youth are more conservative in some ways (mainly towards social spending), but far more liberal in others…witness, for example, the fact an openly gay guy won Canadian Idol last night. Basically, they’re all libertarians, with the only question being whether it’s to the right or to the left…

  11. …”trend toward today’s youth being more conservative oriented”…

    Thinkin’ the same thing, and they all admire gangstas and want to carry handguns. Naturally gravitate to CPoC.


  12. Maybe in Calgary, but as someone (somewhat) young I would agree with Matthew. We are also much more apathetic toward politics, state institutions, religion and authority.

  13. I think Nanos uses a rolling average and therefore these early days. That said, the NDP numbers must be a little concerning.

    For the person who quoted the results from the election predictor, the numbers are meaningless unless entered using provincial breakdowns. i.e. Moving NDP votes to the Liberals in Alberta means nothing but doing the same in B.C. is huge. Having details on where the votes are shifting is cruial.

  14. http://www.thestar.com/FederalElection/article/419595

    Nanos had libs 35 cons 33 on August 29 less than 2 weeks ago. I think that Nik is adjusting his results to more closely refect reality. The trend has the libs fighting it out with the Greens for a place at the next debate

    How many refusals do they take to get the 1000 answers? Until they publish refusals and incompletes this is a art rather than a science.

    How did Nanos do on the Alberta Conservative landslide ? I know that all the pollsters had it close to statistical tie until the day before when someone had a strong Con majority.

  15. Wayne just to clarify:

    You are happy that the Conservatives have trended up to the point so that the dip in polling they experienced since taking office has now evaporated and they have the exact same popularity as they had when they got elected in 2006?

  16. If these polls had any(I mean ANY) reflection of reality why in the world would Harper be calling an election that would give Dion a minority govenment and Dion being running away as fast as his snow shoes could go.

    These pollsters are all getting money for free.

  17. Ricardo: Because waiting and having to fight an election as the sitting government with the economy in an increasing downturn, with Harper being called in to discovery after the Cadman tapes are independantly verified, with Conservative Campaign Officers being hauled off to jail for a few months for in-and-out, and with the So-cons demanding something for their patience at the next conservative convention makes it much worse.

  18. T.T. You are betting on a Liberal minority based on the Nanos poll going into the election call?

    AND why would Dion be running away and eating crow by supporting bad policies to avoid an election for the last year?

  19. Ricardo: Hell, I don’t know who’s going to win this thing. I’m disgusted enough with all parties that I’m seriously hoping for the Rhinos. It might at least wake people up.

    As for why Dion’s been avoiding Harper’s string of confidence votes, it’s called realpolitik. Harper’s been making every piece of legislation a confidence vote because rather than develop compromise legislation, he’d prefer to prey on the Liberal Party’s financial weakness to force his legislation through. While I hate that Dion has put party before principle, I also hate that Harper has used that instead of following the directive of the Canadian Electorate to govern like a minority government, and develop bills that are compromises.

  20. man, whatever happened to the rhinos? can we revive them if they’re deceased? as fun as it is to mock from the sidelines, it must be eight to twelve times as fun to mock from within the field of play.

  21. http://www.rhinoparty.ca/

    Given that they forced the government of Canada to repeal the requirement for a $1000 deposit to run as a federal candidate, I tend to think they’ve probably done more for real democracy in the last decade than most parties.

    Scary thought, eh?

    Looks like they need some 250 members to become an official party.

    Well.. 249 now.

  22. err.. registered party, not official. Just getting ahead of the pedants. :)

  23. Gah. Gaffe a day of my own here.

    http://www.rhinoparty.com/ not .ca

    Although I’m sure that squatter thanks me for the business.

  24. Based on other polls we’ve been getting, Conservative support is the only one that is relaibly in the same place, upper 30s. The Liberals span 24-32 and the NDP 13-21. I guess if you split the difference in both cases they are almost within the margin of error, but things seem to be all over the map.

  25. Thanks Paul for noting the arrival of this poll. I am one of those people who swears by Nanos. It simply was the most accurate poll in predicting the final party percentages for the last election in 2006. That’s good enough for me until proven otherwise…

    Strategic Counsel, Ekos, etc.? Pffft… amateurs.

  26. D, any good statistician would say your methodology is flawed. Predicting future accuracy based on a sample size of one or two elections carries a margin of error of (let me calculate)… a lot.

  27. @Ryan:

    Yes, you’re correct. But hey, if I looked at the many poll predictions from other companies for the last election: they all were wrong (except for Nanos). So, using your reasoning, we shouldn’t believe any poll results since the majority of them are wrong.

    Doesn’t sound like much fun.

    Nevertheless, I look forward to seeing how successful Nanos is at predicting the results this time. Just maybe Nik’s polling methodology is more sound than other companies’ approaches.

  28. Beware of the greens!!! I’ts green-alright—green for them!!!! May just announced she will hike the GST 1%–then we’ll-have campbells carbon tax-+++++ –dions carbon tax—————how much more can we afford to live without–re- our incomes!!!!

  29. M Griggith: I note you skip how income tax and payroll taxes will be reduced. How much more can we afford to live with our money being taxed before we even see it? At least with GST and carbon tax we get the option to save it instead of paying it.

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