Election Prediction Project

Canada Federal Election - 2011

Parkdale-High Park

Prediction Changed
2011-05-01 22:09:00

Constituency Profile


Borkowski, Andrew

Gershuny, Lorne

Kennedy, Gerard

Nash, Peggy

Newton, Sarah

Parker, Terry

Train, Taylor

Gerard Kennedy

Previous Prediction/result

  • 2008 Prediction
  • 2006 Prediction
  • 2004 Prediction
  • 2000 Prediction
  • parkdale-high-park (186/189 Polls)
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  • Pundits' Guide


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    11 05 01 FJC
    In the 2008 election the NDP received 18.2% of the vote nationally. A recent Nanos Poll, conducted Apr. 28 to 30, gives the NDP 30.6% nationally and 27.4% in Ontario. Considering the high profile status of the NDP candidate, Peggy Nash, combined with Jack Layton's new popularity and the above polling numbers, I believe this riding is poised to return to the NDP on May 2.
    11 05 01 Marco Ricci
    Actually, Gerard Kennedy did not win by a narrow margin - he won by 7 points. Having said that, just like Maria Minna nearby, he has gone from looking like a solid win at the start of the campaign to one that is now in question. He will have to hope that the strong team and name recognition that surprised Peggy Nash and the NDP in 2008 can pull out a narrow win for him here. The reason he still has a chance is because he was underestimated in 2008 - in the final week almost everyone in the NDP was predicting a win for Nash, and a poll was even published predicting Kennedy (and Minna) would lose, and yet he won easily. Can he do it again?
    11 05 01 David A.
    Former resident of the riding. I know its voting history and in better times it probably would have been a big win for Gerard Kennedy. However, on recent visits to this area, I've seen so few Kennedy signs and far more Nash signs that an outsider wouldn't suspect a real contest here. Given the sudden popularity of the NDP I think Peggy Nash is going to pull this one off. And I say this as a Liberal myself.
    11 04 30 Gastroid
    I can't fathom any reason why people would continue to predict a Liberal hold in this riding other than partisan wishful thinking. In 2008 Kennedy won by a fairly narrow margin. If only a tenth of his support switchers over to the NDP then this riding switches -- and it's hard to imagine that not happening, given the polls.
    11 04 29 synthome
    I think it's time to give the edge to Peggy Nash. Heard her on CBC radio and saw her on Power and Politics. She's on her game and the NDP wave is moving through. Projectdemocracy now predicts a Nash win. Not to mention the media are reporting that Ignatieff is giving up gaining new ground and is going to stick around the GTA to try and help the local incumbents. Internal LPC polling must be presenting a very dismal picture.
    11 04 28 rsg
    i agree with Mike on this, so my call is that Gerard will hold this as he is too high profile, although it will be extremely close due to this newfound popularity of the NDP.
    11 04 29 jeff316
    Parkdale generally votes NDP. High Park generally votes Liberal. Parkdale voter turnouts are low to middle. High Park voter turnouts are middle to high. Gerard Kennedy was a provincial MPP, is the incumbent, is Trudeauish in his beliefs, has a higher profile than Nash, and he appeals to both NDPers and Liberals. For High Parkers and wealthier Parkdalians, voting Kennedy is the best of both worlds - you get the lefty values without the people who hang to the fringes of the NDP. He'll hold this even if the NDP exceeds wildest expectations and ends up the official opposition (which they won't.)
    11 04 27 rabbit
    with ndp rising in polls even in ontario now - NDP gain -at least this riding has a known NDP candidate with a record and (she hasnt taken a vacation during the campaign) - we should all be happy that Nash with her experience will be a cabinet member that will be needed in running a NDP government later this year
    11 04 27 Mike
    Much to the chagrin of the local NDP, this is a Gerard Kennedy riding, not a Liberal riding. Support for him personally remains solid and will withstand an even higher NDP tide. Peggy is simply not doing well enough in the polls she needs to win to attempt a comeback.
    11 04 27 MF
    I'm going to call this for the NDP. Peggy Nash was a highly-regarded MP and with the NDP surge having come into Ontario (27% according to Angus Reid and 22% according to Ekos), this is the lowest hanging fruit in Toronto. Gerard Kennedy, while personally popular, is unlikely to withstand this trend.
    11 04 25 JamesB
    For what's it's worth, NDP volunteers have been going door to door in Parkdale getting the vote out for the advance polls. I've yet to get a visit from a Liberal volunteer since the start of the election, but the NDP has knocked on my door at least 3 times. Perhaps it's different in the wealthier High Park area, but down here in Parkdale it feels like the NDP has the momentum.
    11 04 25 EH
    I've enjoyed this site/forum in past elections, but I think the tone of the electorate is just too fluid for this site to keep up. This riding was leaning to Peggy Nash before the election. The latest polling trends are going to wrap this riding up with a bow and hand it to the NDP.
    If Toronto only gave the NDP one more seat, this would be it.
    11 04 23 JD West
    I think Gerard's strategy of waiting until the dust settled on failed Liberal leaders and then rising up from the ashes is about to backfire. Fortress Toronto is starting to show signs of crumbling from the inside (NDP) and from the outside (Conservatives). Peggy didn't bow to pressure to find a new riding, and this time Gerard is looking at losing his own seat to the NDP surge.
    11 04 22 WAC
    With the NDP surging in the national polls and in Ontario, Parkdale-High Park is Too Close To Call - leaning to Gerard Kennedy and the Liberals, however if this surge continues could very well go back to Peggy Nash and the NDp.
    11 04 21 synthome
    Progressives who reluctantly voted for Kennedy and others who employed who voted ‘strategically’ saw nothing in return. Instead, we lost one of the most respected parliamentarians in Ottawa, a woman who passionately and vocally defended the interests of the riding, the city, the Party and the country. In return, we got an absentee representative relegated to the back of the back bench, with no voice or say in his party.
    Peggy Nash now has to be favored to take this seat. Today's unprecedented and polls in Quebec which have the NDP ahead of the BQ, and this evening's Ipsos Reid poll that has the NDP ahead of the LPC nationally is truly a game changer. Not only will the massive surge of the NDP in Quebec resonate across the entire country, but to the extent that strategic voting will play a role, it will work in Nash's favour, since the NDP are increasingly looking like it will form the next Official Opposition.
    Great news for progressives, great news for Canada.
    11 04 21 Marshall Howard Bader
    Too early to call this, with the NDP vote surging and the Liberal vote in free fall; this one will likely go back to Peggy Nash.
    11 04 20 Mikey G
    I live in this riding and I was quite surprised by Kennedy's margin of victory in 2008 despite the poorly run national campaign. With that said, this time around should be easier for Gerard. The only way I can see Nash winning is if the Conservatives get more than their usual 12% to 15% and if some of the Green vote moves to the NDP. However, as others have said, Kennedy has an army of volunteers helping him so I think it's safe to say that GK will be heading back to Ottawa.
    11 04 19 SG
    I'm constantly seeing GK's volunteers in the riding but have yet to encounter Nash's. Based on the signage, Nash seems to be stronger in Parkdale, but High Park is all GK. I think that the riding will remain liberal
    11 04 19 HighParkGirl
    Yes Jack Layton is the best liked of the leaders, but the NDP vote is soft. And some General Motors union leaders (Peggy's former colleagues) are supporting the Liberals again. Parkdale-High Park Liberal again.
    11 04 18 MF
    I initially predicted that Gerard Kennedy would hold this after winning Parkdale-High Park in spite of the Dion debacle. Now I am not so sure. Jack Layton is very popular and the NDP campaign has momentum. Peggy Nash was a highly-regarded MP, and this is the first seat they would pick up.
    11 04 17 Philip Yu
    Nash has actually been ‘invisible’ as president of the NDP, which to paraphrase the Northern Pikes, actually makes her the ‘girl with a problem.’ Kennedy's absence from the House has been known for some time, so it won't be that much of a factor.
    I've heard word that Nash's volunteers may soon be released to descend upon Trinity--Spadina next door to shore up NDP support there; if that's the case (which wouldn't surprise me one bit), Gerard Kennedy may have this one sewn up, proving that perhaps absence does make the heart grow fonder.
    11 04 14 MH
    Answer to John: I did not say that Ignatieff had won the debate -- however that is measured -- but that he had held up well enough so that there would be no negative impact on the Liberal candidate in this and other ridings. To establish that my entire contribution is worthless you would have to make better arguments of your own. Peggy Nash was an effective MP, but it didn't keep her from going down in a general election that mostly turned out badly for the Liberals. Gerard Kennedy may not be as effective an MP as Nash was, but there are plenty of more or less ineffective MP's (some of them cabinet ministers) who will have no trouble getting re-elected on May 2.
    My argument for a Liberal victory in P-HP is essentially this: if Nash couldn't hold the seat in 2008, when the political circumstances favoured her, she is unlikely to regain it in 2011 when they do not, or not to the same extent.
    11 04 14 jeff316
    Despite being on one edge of the spectrum, NDP voters (particularly wealthier, urban NDP votes) tend to be some of the least partisan voters in Canadian politics, and are more apt to park their vote elsewhere due to another candidate's personality, politics, or some aspect of an NDP campaign they're unhappy with. For that reason, Kennedy is the ideal NDP-vote snatcher. Like Carolyn Bennett (or provincial politicians like Michael Gravelle and Dave Levac) he's essentially an NDPer who was like turned off from the party by it's provincial Rae incarnation (read: he wants to be in Cabinet.) For that, NDP voters will support him in significant numbers, enough to keep winning until his party really lets him down. Nash winning would be a huge surprise.
    11 04 14 ECD
    Peggy Nash should win this riding back for the NDP. Since the Liberal leadership race Gerard Kennedy has been notably absent and in fact has a very poor record of attendance in the House. Peggy Nash is a hard working MP both here in the riding and in the House.
    11 04 13 John
    ‘Michael Ignatieff held up well in the debate yesterday, so that a negative effect in P-HP’
    Polls show that Layton came in ahead of Iggy (both behind Harper) in who Canadians thought won the debate. So, you're entire comment has no validity whatsoever. Peggy's been visible throughout the riding, and with Layton's 2nd placing in the debate, I think she'll take this one back.
    11 04 13 MH
    Michael Ignatieff held up well in the debate yesterday, so that a negative effect in P-HP (or anywhere else) is unlikely. Indeed, Liberals are likely to be encouraged by their man's performance and by the hints of scandal surrounding government spending during the G8. The ‘anybody but Harper’ factor is irrelevant in P-HP, so that there probably won't be much drifting of the NDP vote to the Liberals. But that doesn't matter. Having resisted a provincial (and national) trend away from the Liberals in 2008, voters here are unlikely to return the NDP's Peggy Nash to the House in 2011.
    This riding is one of the few the EPP got wrong in 2008, predicting an NDP victory. At present it is not TCTC. That may change, but it belongs in the Liberal column for now.
    11 04 12 George
    In 2008, despite a very unpopular leader and record-low numbers for the Liberal Party, Kennedy won this in a walk---it wasn't even close. What has changed, other than the Liberals getting a stronger leader and the NDP (according to recent polls) tanking in Ontario? Easy Liberal hold.
    11 04 11 Social Democrat
    The NDP is on a slide in Ontario? One poll that does nightly tracking with a huge regional margin of error shows that. All other polls don't... and most show an increased level of support than in 2008. Liberals nationwide? The same as in 2008.
    Add that to the provincial Liberal government taking a dive in the polls (voters, rightly or wrongly, don't make a difference between federal and provincial parties), and this riding does become TCTC.
    Peggy Nash is a top notch candidate who has been working the riding hard. She's known and well liked. Kennedy has been an invisible MP in Ottawa. It will be a close race.
    11 04 10 Ottawa Outside Insider
    This riding is a safe Liberal seat. Kennedy is a very capable incumbent MP in a strong Liberal area. The NDP has struggled here provincially as of late and I do not believe that Peggy Nash has what it will take to unseat the Liberals. Add to that the declining fortunes of the NDP in Ontario courtesy of the Liberals who seem to be a more attractive centre-left option in this latest election. In my books, I don't think P-HP is too close to call.
    11 04 10 MH
    Putting this in the TCTC column is almost certainly mistaken. Nanos may not be the most reliable of the pollsters, but the week-long trend they are reporting of declining support for the NDP in Ontario will, if it is even halfway accurate, doom Peggy Nash's efforts. Some believe that Gerard Kennedy does not ‘deserve’ to keep this seat, but when did ‘desert’ ever have much to do with politics?
    11 04 10 Teddy Boragina
    Kennedy is a nobody. Actually that's not true, he's the person who put Dion in the leadership. Kennedy will not win or lose this riding, nor will Nash, the Liberals and/or the NDP will win or lose this riding, and right now, the Liberals are doing very well in the polls.
    11 04 09 joey joe joe
    Agreed NDP down a bunch in Ontario and nationally I can't see how this is in play when Kennedy beat Nash who was the incumbant last time by 7%. Conservatives are not a factor here.
    11 04 08 Dr Bear & Prof Ape
    From Liberal to TCTC? Can't get behind that. The Liberals are devouring NDP support in Ontario and if Gerald could have defeated Peggy in '08, then it's unlikely Peggy can do the same this time. Liberal hold.
    11 04 07 Marco Ricci
    I don't doubt that Peggy Nash is still a strong candidate, and I'm sure she will run a good campaign, but the question is, how realistic is it to predict she will win? In 2008 there was supposed to be a very close race between Nash and Kennedy, and, in fact, in the final days before the election, most people were predicting that Kennedy would lose. However, when the results came in, not only did Kennedy win, but he won by over 3,000 votes. I was expecting Kennedy to lose last time, but he demonstrated that it is a mistake to underestimate him. I think his main weakness is that he has not been as high-profile as people expected, and he has a bad attendance record in Parliament. But as the incumbent, and the one who decisively beat Nash in 2008, I think it will be hard to beat him with the Liberals being well ahead of the NDP in the Ontario polls.
    11 04 05 SF
    This will be a tight race with two candidates flush with strong grass roots organizations... I'm still undecided on how the results will go.
    11 04 02 AR
    I will kindly ask the creators of this site to reconsider calling this for the liberals. Gerard Kennedy was a leadership hopeful and almost became leader of the liberal party had he bested Dion in the first/second round of voting in the liberal leadership race. Since then, he's been invisible!
    11 04 02 M. Lunn
    A close NDP-Liberal race in the past three elections. Gerard Kennedy was able to buck the trend due to his personal popularity. The problem is few talk about him being a possible successor to Michael Ignatieff and Peggy Nash is also running a much stronger campaign this time around. While I would give the Liberals an edge here, it is far from certain.
    11 04 02 binriso
    Dunno why they might not try Nash in Beaches East York or somewhere else, Gerrard probably has it by a significantly larger margin this time due to him owning the incumbency, and now both parties have a Toronto area leader.
    11 03 31 HighParkGirl
    Peggy Nash writes on her campaign literature:’When will Gerard Kennedy show up for work? ‘ When will Peggy Nash show up in the riding? Never seen her on the street in Parkdale-High Park and I have lived in the riding since I was 3. She seems to be on every television show though.
    11 03 30 MH
    Here's another riding in which the forces of the right have never recovered from the violence done to the PC's by the Reform Party in 1993. As a result the battle continues to be between the Liberals and the NDP. The Liberals held it from 1988 to 2006, when Peggy Nash took it by 2,300 votes. She was unable to keep it in 2008, however, during a general election when Liberals all over Toronto saw their vote totals reduced because of Stéphane Dion's unpopularity. So far I see nothing that will allow Ms. Nash to retake the seat. Gerard Kennedy will hold this for the Liberals.
    11 03 29 Marshall Howard Bader
    Peggy Nash has great support in the riding and will likely reclaim her seat here.
    11 03 27 Marco Ricci
    I think Gerard Kennedy's main challenge will be the fact that he has not been as visible in Parliament as some people expected him to be. Peggy Nash is also attacking Kennedy over the report published this month on MP's absences which shows Gerard Kennedy to be a bad offender. However, Kennedy was able to beat Nash by several points when she was the incumbent and when it was a bad year for the Liberals. Now he has the advantage of incumbency. Unless the Liberal vote collapses in the 416, Kennedy's less than stellar record will not be enough to defeat him.
    10 02 13 R.O.
    Considering the fact Peggy Nash the former ndp mp for the riding from 06-08 has got the ndp nomination for the next election this one might not be as easy a hold for the liberals as they though. although i'd still say Gerard Kennedy has the advantage here but Peggy Nash has ran here 3 times before so she'd be experienced at campaigning in the riding and not an easy candidate to beat at all. but i don't know as she had the incumbent advantage last time and lost by a couple thousand votes in the end. either way i'm not ready to make a solid prediction for this one yet as both the liberals and ndp are running strong candidates in this riding and each has won the riding in recent years.
    10 02 11 Marco Ricci
    There will be a re-match in this riding between MP Gerard Kennedy and former MP Peggy Nash. The NDP has re-nominated Nash to be their candidate in the next federal election.
    Because Liberal support is higher than NDP support in Toronto, and because Kennedy won by a decent margin last time and is now the incumbent, he has the advantage. He was able to win by several thousand votes last time in what was supposed to be a much closer race.
    The one challenge Kennedy might face is that since his election as an MP, he has not been as high-profile as some people thought he would be, and this is the criticism he will have to face from his opponents in the next election. Perhaps it is because of his rivalry with Ignatieff that has caused Ignatieff to keep him on the backbenches, but whatever the reason, Kennedy may face some questions for being out of view for a while.
    Other than that, Kennedy has the edge.
    09 09 28 Dr Bear & Prof Ape
    In the '08 electionprediction-go-round, He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named (and all his clones) went off time and again on how Kennedy was yesterday's man. Well Kennedy defeated Nash by quite a margin (in '08 Liberal circles). Now this race has gotten quite dull. Maybe in the NDP's future this could be theirs again. Not this time.
    09 09 01 MF
    Gerard Kennedy was able to take this in spite of being personally responsible for sticking the Liberals with Dion. He will almost certainly be back, even if Iggy doesn't care for him that much.
    09 08 31 A.S.
    Ultimately, Peggy Nash was up against a 500-pound gorilla, even if there were murmurs (even among certain Liberal partisans, including I'm Always Right and his team of sockpuppets last EPP goaround) of her being a gorilla-slayer t/w the end. If there's any lasting aftereffect of the Nash interlude and what led up to (or, provincially, paralleled) it, it's that NDP's now enshrined--maybe--as the official permaopposition in P-HP. But GK's still too much the inherent powerhouse; still, as long as Cheri DiNovo rules his former provincial roost, don't expect landslide free rides. Since I more or less correctly predicted last time that Kennedy vs Nash would be more of a Layton-Mills type of race, this one ought to be more of a Layton-Coyne/Lang affair by extension.
    09 08 29 Insider
    High profile several years ago, Kennedy has become an invisible man on the national scene since winning this riding but don't expect him to lose next time unless a superstar candidate runs against him or he does something worthy of a scandal. I wouldn't expect either.
    09 08 23 Observer
    Peggy Nash was one of the only 2 incumbent NDP MP's to get defeated in 2008. Peggy was very popular and even that didn't help her. Liberal hold.
    11 04 28 W Petrie
    I have friends in the Liberal party who say that this is over. If this is not an NDP pickup, then the polls are completely wrong. Time to call this one.

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