Alberta NDP pull ahead in election race: poll

It’s only two weeks until Alberta election day and one party is finally out with a lead in the race.

Abacus Data released new research over the weekend showing the NDP has pulled ahead and is now edging out the UCP to form government.

The poll of 885 eligible voters showed 43 per cent of voter intention going to Rachel Notley and her party, and 35 per cent supporting Danielle Smith and the UCP.

This comes after “several months of near or complete deadlock” in voter intentions between the two parties, according to the polling company.

This most recent data is the first time since tracking began in December that support for the New Democrats is higher than 40 per cent and it is the biggest lead either party has had in the five waves of research completed by Abacus, the company said.

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The research also indicates the NDP is gaining support amongst who it calls “Reluctant UCPers” — individuals who voted blue in 2019 but are undecided or would vote for another party today.

Abacus says these voters make up 16 to 18 per cent of the electorate and in April, 51 per cent of them were undecided, while 34 per cent said they would vote NDP. The newest data shows a 17-point decrease in the undecided votes, while half say they are voting orange.

In Calgary, the NDP has a narrow lead over the UCP — with 42 per cent of residents reporting they would vote for Notley’s party and 36 per cent saying they would vote for Smith and company. Undecided voters in the city sit at 13 per cent.

In Edmonton, the orange wave continues to spread — 56 per cent of voters say they are checking off the NDP candidate on their ballot, while 23 per cent say the same of their UCP candidate.

On the other hand, 338Canada, a model of electoral projections based on opinions polls, shows the UCP with a slim lead — a 49 to 47 per cent vote projection in favour of the blue.

Mainstreet Research released data on May 8 which shows the UCP ahead of the NDP by five per cent

While not every Albertan can agree on who the best party is to lead the province, there is one thing they can agree on — it’s going to be close.

Just over 60 per cent of people surveyed in the most recent Abacus research said exactly that.

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