1999 Ontario Provincial Election
Riding-by-Riding Prediction
London North Centre

Current Prediction:
Riding Profile:

Liberal Party:
Roger Caranci
Progressive Conservative Party:
Hon. Dianne Cunningham MPP
New Democratic Party:
Marion Boyd MPP
Green Party:
Jeff Culbert
Family Coalition Party:
Andrew Jezierski
Freedom Party:
Robert Metz
Natural Law Party:
Stephen Porter

Incumbent (old riding composition):
London Centre (40%):
Marion Boyd
London North (67%):
Hon. Dianne Cunningham
Middlesex (1%):
Bruce Smith

Member of Parliament:
Joe Fontana

Surrounding Ridings:
London North Centre
London West

Population: 102 470
Avg Household Income 44 542
Language (Home)
English 91 980
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Too Close 01/30/99 London Free Press Email:
Follow the leader By Peter Geigen-Miller
In the most epic battle shaping up in the region, former NDP cabinet minister Marion Boyd will face off against Tory cabinet minister Dianne Cunningham in London-North-Centre.
03/07/99 A. Email:
This "clash of the titans" will be a fight to the finish, with New Democrat Marion Boyd pulling ahead at the last moment. Boyd won by a thousand votes in 1995, in this traditionally small-c conservative area. Before that, she defeated Premier David Peterson in one of the most surprising upsets of the election. Cunningham will not be easy to beat, but if anyone can do it it's Boyd.
03/13/99 OEP Email:
Marion Boyd, one of the highest profile cabinet member in the Rae's government, only won the last election by a margin of 1,732 (captured only 36.77% of the votes), defeated Tory Patrick McGuinness. In the other hand Dianne Cunningham won his seat by a margin of 12,083 (captured 52.65% of the votes), where NDP Carolyn Davies came in third (Liberal Larry Crossan came in second). This riding is definetly going to be a close battle, but I will give the edge the Cunningham, one of the very few Tory minister that is actually liked and respected.
03/13/99 mike Email: mktolpud@webgate.net
But word is Cunningham may not run perhaps after reviewing the latest in poll numbers.
03/23/99 mike Email: 4bh7@qlink.queensu.ca
...Which polls are those. The one's that have the Tories at 43% or the NDP at 14%?
03/26/99 A.S. Email: adma@interlog.com
Whatever it is that the NDP's trying to pull in London, it's bold. Logic has it that as the easternmost riding of London-Fanshawe carries the best NDP numbers, it's the place where the city's sole NDP incumbent ought to be running. But no. Marion Boyd's chosen to run in London NC against the most popular and well regarded (and moderate) Tory in London, Dianne Cunningham...and she's going into this on a more than 20-point notional disadvantage by 1995 figures! Is she sane?!? Perhaps--after all, by defying the odds and hanging on in '95, Boyd proved she wasn't a mere Peterson-killing one-trick pony. Nor can she be categorized with the various suicide-run boilerplate Common-Sensers trying their luck against strong PC/NDP incumbents--her cabinet and constituency record is too solid. And this *is* an urban centre in the age of Harris, and the one which hosted the first Days of Action protest (where Boyd, inevitably, was at the forefront). The Cunningham polls between Oxford Street and the Thames are traditionally NDP-friendly to the east, genteelly upscale in a potentially left-sympathetic way to the west--it's mainly north of the Thames, in deeply suburban and often very new areas like Masonville and Stoneybrook, where the Tories have a lock. I'll betcha Marion Boyd's got something up her sleeve--using the '97 Toronto mayoralty race as a comparison point, she's the potentially giant-killing Barbara Hall to Cunningham's complacent Mel Lastman. And of course, if Boyd gets in, she'll almost certainly be taking Irene Mathyssen in London-Fanshawe with her--an NDP double whammy in London! But the biggest irony in what was David Peterson's kingdom a decade ago is that the Liberal candidate this time will likely be utterly marginalized in the fray.
04/08/99 NOW Email:
Cooking up a Tory defeat By Enzo di Matteo
Tory MPP Dianne Cunningham has the numbers on her side. The former Tory leadership candidate won by more than 9,000 votes in 95 over her next closest rival.
But she's been almost nonexistent as women's issues and intergovernmental affairs minister, and took a lot of heat early on for her government's cutting of funding for women's shelters. The new London North Centre she'll be running in rates 96th out of 103 ridings in median household income ($34,203), which doesn't exactly make it Tory bread-and-butter territory.
At the same time, Cunningham will also face her stiffest competition yet in cross-town rival and NDP MPP Marion Boyd, who shocked former Grit premier David Peterson in 1990 by a resounding 8,000 votes.
The Grits' candidate, who has yet to be chosen, will have national caucus chair Joe Fontana, who represents the area federally, to help out, making Cunningham's task all that more difficult.
04/18/99 L.O. Email: petercashin@yahoo.com
The PC's are gonna do it here, doesn't seem likey to be a change in the general trend of the past few years.
04/18/99 Mike O'Brien Email: l.obrien@nf.sympatico.ca
Tories will loose even more support here. They didn't win this last time, they'll keep in second place with the NDP moving to win and the Liberals benefitting a little, but not enoght to break out of third.
04/23/99 Email:
Marion Boyd does not have any chance of coming out of this race the winner. Diane Cunningham is too strong a candidate. Boyd would have had a better chance if she had decided to run in London-Fanshawe or against tory member Bob Wood in London West. Maybe Boyd is tired of politics and running against Cunningham is the easiest way to retirement.
04/23/99 MGB Email: murrgira@enoreo.on.ca
While Dianne Cunningham has previously won this riding by a large margin, her presence over the past 4 years has been little noticed. Both Boyd and Cunningham have strong histories municipaly and are respected figures in the area. Cunningham alienated many traditionally right wing voters this spring by indicating that she use her influence with Dave Johnson to help secure funding for a new school in North London. It quickly became apparent that she had little influence with Johsnon and she then became defensive. In addition, as Minister Responsible for Women's Issues, Cunningham has aliented many, many womeen's groups both traditionally left wing and moderate while Boyd has become their champioin. Boyd's team is strong and has been preparing for some time. Cunningham's late nomination has led many to speculate that she waffled about this competition and is not secure in her position.
04/24/99 William Francis Email:
Marion Boyd is more in tune with the issues of women and their needs. She is more open to people and has a better handle on the issues. Diane Cunningham has alienated herself from the people in the community.
05/07/99 Jeff Bennett Email: jbennett@execulink.com
Dianne Cunningham has a reputation for excellence in constituency work, she's a current Minister of the Crown, and she has money to burn. All these factors together point to Cunningham holding this seat for the Tories.
Marion Boyd is a good candidate as well, but my heart tells me she cannot beat Cunningham.
05/10/99 Jeff Bennett Email: jbennett@execulink.com
The Liberal Candidate in this riding is Roger Caranci, who happens to be President of the London-Fanshawe Liberals. Considering the dogfight between Cunningham and Boyd, it was understandably difficult for the Liberals to find someone willing to run here.
05/14/99 Kristin K Email: kristin@golden.net
This is going to be the most exciting battle to watch. Don't discount Marion Boyd. She got in when many people were angry with the NDP. Remember that a lot of traditional NDP voters turned against the party with anger about Rae Days. They viewed it as anti-union. However, in the wake of the Tories they see that the NDP were responding to public panic over defecits in a way that saved jobs, and gave them valuable time off in return. The alternative to that creative solution is losing good paying permanent jobs, cutting social programs, and increasing user fees. I think a lot of traditional NDP voter will be returning to the NDP after this experience with the Tories.
Some people who voted Tory last time may also vote NDP this time, even those who have never supported them before. AS the other incumbant, Marion Boyd is the most likely to beat out Cunningham, and we know that Ontarian often vote against, rather than for. I expect many teachers and nurses in London North will be voting NDP. Unions are organizing. People who have never volunteered in a campaign before are doing so to beat the Tories. I think Marion will prevail.
05/24/99 Mike Email: kristin@golden.net
Not sure why this one is in the Tory column. Signs clearly widely support Boyd, she even seems to be pulling vote in the north of the riding around UWO. East of Adelaide looks solidly Boyd. As always, turnout will be the difference, and if Boyd can get her folks out, she should win.
05/25/99 A. Email:
With the recent rise in NDP support, a lot of "strategic voters" will be looking for strong New Democrats to support. Marion Boyd is certainly one of them. Her tireless constituency work and her high profile will be enough to rally many disaffected Liberals who realize their candidate cannot win in this riding. The anti-Harris forces will also be looking for weak cabinet ministers to target, and Cunningham is certainly one of their top targets (along with Basset and Villeneuve). Boyd wins over Cunningham.
05/26/99 Brad Nicpon Email: nicpon@execulink.com
Diane Cunningham is in no way a "weak" conservative or cabinet minister. She is perhaps one of the areas highest-profile PCs. Not to mention redistribution favours the PCs here. Cunningham should still take this seat.
05/27/99 Chuck McPhail Email: w5p@hotmail.com
I am told I will lose all credibility here, by making the bold prediction that I intend to. Let me say it right off the bat. I am looking for an NDP win in this riding. Yup, I said it! Why? Well, for several reasons. This riding, in a socio-economic sense, is not fertile Tory ground. Secondly, Marion Boyd is running here. She's a giant killer and a tough campaigner. She is well-known and respected. The NDP is concentrating here and this is a targeted riding, where Boyd could benefit immensely from strategic voting. It's going to go down to the wire, but I do believe that Boyd will defeat Cunningham by a slim margin.
05/27/99 Rob C Email: rcamero1@julian.uwo.ca
Your current prediction for PC win is outdated. The Liberal is a non-factor (last minute nomination from out of riding) and the Liberal vote is collapsing everywhere but his boyhood neighbourhood. I don't think he'll take 15% of the vote. The "anti Harris" vote is going massively to the NDP and everyone seems to know it. NDP signs are overwhelming in working class neighbourhoods, predominant in middle class and equal in highly affluent neighbourhoods of $400,000 homes. Unless there are 10,000 silent PC's hiding out there, Boyd is well on her way to beating Cunningham as soundly as she beat Peterson ( who had been considered to "own" London Centre at the time).
05/28/99 P. Kasman Email:
Due to the recent surge in NDP support and Marion Boyd being one of the few NDP candidates to survive the last election,I would give the edge to her, but in a VERY close race.
05/30/99 London Free Press Email: mailto:dvanbrenk@lfpress.com
Four London ridings too tight to call by Debora Van Brenk
17 per cent undecided
Marion Boyd, NDP (30): "We've said all along this is a tight race between Dianne and myself," Boyd said. "It also puts the lie to Mr. Caranci's claim that he's beating me in this riding. Clearly he isn't." NDP polling puts Boyd at a little more than 40 per cent of decided voters. Strategic voters, those who believe she is the best bet to beat a Tory, will come into play, she said.
Roger Caranci, Liberal (17): The support for Cunningham parallels internal polling data, said campaign manager Alan Patton. But he believes Boyd is not as strong as the numbers suggest. "I'm not discouraged by either your numbers or our numbers, which have us much closer to the NDP. Three weeks ago, who was Roger Caranci? And now he's within striking distance of two political icons in the city. We're in the race, there's no doubt about that."
Dianne Cunningham, Conservative (36): "That's a big undecided (group) and that's where my work is," Cunningham said. She was not surprised by the data but "I don't pay a lot of attention to polls. We've been in tight races before." She said her campaign has both a strong candidate and strong party leader. The next few days she will focus on areas with traditionally high voter turnout.
05/31/99 lrs Email:
DPC win since I believe Liberal vote will be too high- Liberals will not abandon their candidates to vote NDP as easily as other way- Boyd to lose by 5-7%
05/31/99 Robin Email:
Marion Boyd has a large group of totally committed workers. The NDP is known for its ability to get the vote out. On E-day, a higher percentage of NDP supporters, than Tory supporters, will actually vote. Marion will take this riding.
05/31/99 C. Chmelyk Email: 7crc1@qlink.queensu.ca
The London Free Press poll shows this race to be very tight, with the Liberals nowhere in the picture. I expect that now that the Liberals are apparently hopeless in London N-C, the strategic votes will go behind Boyd.
Also, keep in mind that the NDP will be much more likely to get their vote out on E-day. This is not one the NDP want to lose, and I guarantee they will have a thousand workers out on the third to pull every potential NDP voter out of the woodwork and to to the polling station.
06/02/99 Brad Nicpon Email: nicpon@execulink.com
Time for a final prediction: Cunningham. Not only is PC support already high here as evident by local pollings, the redistribution takes away too much from Boyd, and gives more to Cunningham. Boyd may be a strong local candidate (equal with Cunningham) but NDP support in general is not high in London, and I can't see this riding sending anyone back to Queen's Park except Diane Cunningham.

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Last Updated 3rd June 1999

© 1999 Milton Chan, University of Waterloo
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