Prediction Changed
10:44 PM 28/09/2007

Election Prediction Project

Ontario Provincial Election - 2007

Constituency Profile

Progressive Conservative
Family Coalition
New Democratic

Peterborough (100%)
Jeff Leal

2003 Result (redistributed):

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07 10 03 Orleans Voter
Don Newman interviewed a Peterborough newspaper editor on his show today about this riding's history as a bellwether. The prediction was that this riding will stay Liberal.
07 10 01
Even as a recent Trent grad I'm not convinced the student vote will be a factor in the riding. If you take the voter turnout rate in the last federal election for individuals between the ages of 18 - 24 of 22.5% and apply it to the total population of Trent, 8200, we are only looking at 1800 student votes. Now look at the result of the last election (I'm not including the NDP because this is a two horse race) Liberal 24,600 (44%) and PC 18,400 (34%) of a total 55,000 voters. As the Liberals and the PCs also polled at 44% and 34% provincewide its fair to assume that this trend keeps up in our present election which will put the Liberals at 23,600 (43%) and the PCs at 18,000 (33%). Even if all 1800 student votes went NDP the Liberals would still have a comfortable lead of almost 4,000 votes.
07 09 30 RyanOntario
my guess the liberals are even surprised this one was called so early , but i will withhold predicting who will win it. and as for the students i agree the vote will be split and not go to one party depending on how many actually vote. that means the riding will be decided by who actually votes say if more urban voters or if more rural voters show up that could swing it one way or another. it all depends on the 3 main candidates Dave Fitzpatrick, Jeff Leal and Dave Nickle and which one can do a better job of getting there supporters out.
07 09 30 binriso
You do know that students vote on average less than half as much compared to middle aged people(unfortunately), any difference in their vote would have to be large in order to make. Those numbers may be a bit off but student vote percentages are very low and unless there is a very large shift in those votes, it wont impact the riding here. Im going to say another Liberal win, they won by a fair margin last time and itll probably be about half the size as 03 ~5%.
07 09 29 College Kid
I beg to differ to Som Guy's theory.
In fact, as a student in 2003 I was well aware of the 'anti-harris-eves' sentiment that was being pushed on the campuses in PTBO. Thus in 2003, we saw a united student front vote for their best chance to oust the PC's, thus many voted Liberal. Many students also voted Liberal as McGuinty promised to freeze tuition costs. However, this election there is a very different sentiment amongst students. Students no-longer wish to overwhelmingly support the Liberals, as Mcguinty has since removed the tuition freeze, and tuition at Trent alone has increased about 1000 per year per student. There is a clear Green/NDP push on the campuses, thus the past Liberal vote from 2003 will be split, with some votes towards the NDP's, Greens, and even PC's. I still don't think it will be a landslide for Fitzpatrick, but I do believe he'll squeek by.
07 09 27 Som Guy
College Kid: The infusion of university students into Peterborough won't 'split' the EXISTING Liberal vote - and it was higher, in the last election, than the Conservative vote. While the Liberals' percentage of the popular vote may decline, the absolute number of Liberal voters won't, obviously, be reduced. It's the total number of votes that matter. Now--if the students coming into the riding were more likely to vote Conservative, then there would be an effect. But, as you say, they are most likely to vote NDP or Green.
07 09 17 James Casareno
This race is between the PCs and the Liberals. It?s going to be quite the election and bitter it is likely to be. Peterborough is a swing riding highly prized by the Liberals and the PCs. If the Liberals lose this riding it will be a painful blow to the Liberals. The consequence of the PCs not being able to take Peterborough might be as severe as losing the election and with it the chance to form a Government. If the PCs can knock on more doors than the Liberals, it is likely that the PCs will win. So far, I think the PCs have knocked on more doors than any other party since they have been door-knocking since June. If they keep it up as I think they will, it?s their election in the bag.
07 09 17 Former Peterboroughian
I see a lot of posters predicting that the NDP's tuition freeze will win them votes in university communities. This is not so, for two reasons: 1) that promise doesn't hold much sway within all of the other issues in an election campaign, and 2) university voters, both profs and students, are not so one-dimensional for this to make much of a difference. The strength of the NDP in this election in Peterborough will come from provincial momentum, a decent candidate, and the multi-faceted nature of Peterborough's electorate.
The NDP will do better in this election, but really the race here is for second between the Conservatives and the NDP. Jeff Leal will win, albeit with a lower margin than last time.
07 09 08 College Kid
Peterborough is a bell-weather riding, and has in the past been quite loyal to its incumbents, however we might expect a surprise here. The big issue in Peterborough is the college/university swing vote. As students will be in class, and more likely to register to vote in Peterborough (if they vote at all) they may split the Liberal vote. I think we could see an increase in the NDP vote (as they are willing to freeze tuition), and a major increase in the Green vote which will most likely hurt the Liberals. I don't imagine much of a change in the PC vote, but there still is some McGuinty bitterness in the area, which could increase the PC's share. So if the PC's take it, it'll be slim like DelMastro's win federally, but I'm expecting it to happen. Fitzpatrick also has a huge campaign so far too, with signs, flyers, bus posters, and a website.
PC win...barely...
07 09 07 Arthur
Jeff is an over achiever?
Give me a break! Jeff is a good man who has done good things along with his share of bad. But, before the guy was elected he worked in a box factory! He sat on City Council where he made like $10 000 a year. Hardly the virtues of an overachiever.
Jeff's honour comes from the fact that he is born and raised here. He is deeply connected to the land beneath his feet. I believe he really cares. But make no doubt. This is the best job he has ever had and when he saw an opportunity to make it a little better. He did by giving himself a big fat pay raise!
But, I'll think he'll win only because I don't think John Tory Bruce Fitzpatrick/Jony McNutt are mounting a good campaign here. If they were McGuinty and Leal would be in for a harder re-election.
07 08 31 John
Take a look at Greg's comments above. He says that Jeff Leal is a nice guy. True! Greg also says that nobody listens to Jeff. Not true! Jeff is an over achiever with lots of municipal and provincial experience. Gregs claim is lame. Greg doesn't site specifics as to whom doesn't listen to Jeff. Anyone reading the local papers for the period since Jeff Leal's election will realize he has brought lots of dollars to the riding and put Peterborough on the map. He got the bucks for the new hospital.
As far as the conservative candidate (Fitzpatrick) goes, well, he helped run the Conservative members relection campaign in the last election. It was a bust and the incumbent conservative lost. Now Fitzpatrick is the candidate. He was acclaimed, no one else wanted the nomination.
07 08 30 D.A.B.
The reason the hospital seemed delayed was on account of a massive $5.6 Billion deficit inherited after the famous Magna Budget, in which the then Tory Finance Minister outright lied about having a balanced budget. What's worse, despite coming to Peterborough with a fake cheque in one of those famous ?we will build it they will come? announcements, former MPP Gary Stewart and the PC government of the day allocated not 1 plumb dime for the capital costs of the new PRHC. We STILL got the hospital, which was a promise made and a promose kept by Jeff Leal and the Liberals.
07 08 29 B.B.
Jeff can rest easy knowing that he's got the fast food vote locked up. The location of the office worked out well...
I understand your take on the hospital but my understanding and perception was that once the election was over everything was called off for 12 to 18 months while the Liberals decided if it was a project they even wanted to continue with. When it did start back up it had less beds and was much less ambitious than the Tories had planned.
i agree that the Religious schools issue is divisive. I do think however that the implementation of the plan is not as ?scary? as everyone is making it out to be.
07 08 28 RLG
It is hard to run against Jeff Leal. He is popular in the riding and has done his homework well. When he was first elected, he found that, although Gary Stewart(PC) had announced a new hospital, there was no money. It is pretty much accepted in the riding that it was largely due to Leal's efforts that funding was secured. That was the beginning -- The DNA cluster, Ethanol plant, affordable housing -- the list is long and impressive. That is what Leal has done. He has looked after his constituents.
The Tories appear to have a lot of $$ and they are campaigning hard. However, as quoted in today's local paper - when you talk to people at Tim Hortons or Wendys, the vast majority seem happy with Leal
From a personal perspective, I live in the 'rural' eastern part of the riding. For us, I know that Jeff Leal worked long and hard to secure upgrades for Hwy 7. When I drive to town each day, I see the engineers working on this section of highway which is one of the most deadly in the province.
Religious schools will hurt the Tories. The NDP may regain some of the center left support that they lost in the anti-Harris 2003 vote. As Tory tries to distance himself from Harris people are constantly reminded of the 'bad old Harris days'. Many do not want to go back.
07 08 20 Arthur
C'mon the Liberals have been spending here in Peterborough like people do on boxing day! Where haven't they dropped big money in this riding is the question.
This riding is important to both Leaders as it is sadly a ?Bell Weather Riding?. A term I despise.
But, I'll agree with you Jeff is not well respected and most people think he is a whimp. I am actually quite shocked at the number of people that say that to me. Fitzpatrick is a smart guy and well spoken on the issues. However, to most people in this riding he is just a face on the side of a tractor trailer with a bad 70s haircut. What he stands for is still unknown except for faith based schools and that is not good thing.
So although I agree that he might win. Let's remember Leal has been winning elections for 20 years.
07 08 19 A.S.
Don't be so hasty re the Tories. For ?a great demonstration of Peterborough's support for Conservative government?, 36% was pretty lukewarm--far more of that lost Liberal base went NDP, in fact (and I suspect that's the primary direction any lost Trent support's likely to go). And there's an excellent chance of that federal pattern repeating itself provincially with teacher's unionist Dave Nickle (who overachieved in both '99 and '03) giving it another go for the NDP. Yes, Fitzpatrick may be good; but in this particular seat, he's not the only viable non-Liberal choice--which might work to save the seat for the Liberals, anyway. After all, unlike the last federal election, they have an incumbent running...
07 08 17 Greg
While many observers feel that the election will be a close race in Peterborough, my impression is that it will not be close at all. Our current member Jeff Leal is a nice guy, but he is the nice guy that nobody listens to. The PC candidate Bruce Fitzpatrick is a local attorney that is extremely sharp, speaks well. In addition, PC leader John Tory has demonstrated that the Peterborough riding is extremely important to him, a significant contrast from Dalton McGuinty who fly's in from Toronto occasionally.
07 08 07 Arthur
I think the other two posts are too optimistic. They place way too much on the rural vote. The rural vote always votes Conservative. What else is new! As one Liberal Insider said to me. We just hope to shake the tree and get a few more apples. As former MP Peter Adam's said to me once, ?The farmers might not vote for me but their wife's do.? In the last election people like Warden Ron Gerow and one Councilor in Havelock supported Jeff Leal. It is unclear if that is the same this time around. Even at that they only canvassed in the trailer park where they thought there was support. Not at the farms!. So that is the best the Liberals can hope for.
This election will be decided in places like Monaghan Ward and Lakefield in the riding. These are places where large concentrations of young working Professionals now live and they voted for the Liberals which gave them a solid voting block. Monaghan Ward is held by two Liberal City Councilors. Jack Doris and Henry Clarke. But both are moderates and past members of the Progressive Conservative party until they changed coats. But, in the west west end of Monaghan Ward past Wallis Dr both their support weakens and Council Candidate Alan Wilson (Past President of the local Conservative Party) really did well. Almost edging longtime councilor and past Mayor Jack Doris out of power in the last municipal election! So even though I am sure Jeff Leal thinks it will go his way again. He is over-confident because I think people are not big McGuinty fans here. MP Dean DelMastro did well in this area last time. There were not a lot of signs out for Federal Liberals in the last two elections in this area.
But, and the big but here! This area has 3 very well respected ?public? schools. Those schools you can bet are going to cry foul all the way to the bank over this proposed faith based school system that the Tories have proposed. That may very well hand these areas over to Jeff Leal without him even having to canvass. Note: There is one Catholic School in the area as well. Bruce Fitzpatrick is a Catholic who sends his kids to a Catholic school and it will not bold well in this area. However, people see him as a fiscal conservative and that will play well in a wealthier area of town.
Many people are impressed with Leal's delivery of the new hospital. The Liberals have gave big money to buy votes in this riding. So that will be big assets for Leal as well. If that is the case then that means it will likely go Liberal.
07 07 26 Cory Feferman
I think that the Conservatives will take this riding. The past federal election was a great demonstration of Peterborough's support for Conservative government, especially in the more rural areas of the riding. Also, at least in the student community, there has been lots of bad press for McGuinty. The Liberals are losing student support and that will mean more votes from the 7000 Trent students going elsewhere.
Another reason I have faith in a Conservative victory is because of its candidate Bruce Fitzpatrick. He is very organized and has been reaching out to the people for a while. He is the only candidate that has personally come to my door and is doing a fantastic job of letting the people know him personally and not just by name.
07 06 28 Josh
The provincial Tories are poised to make big gains in rural Ontario, and Peterborough is one of the ridings that can easily be recaptured by the Conservatives come October 10. The federal Tories plucked this riding from the Liberal Party of Canada in 2006, which shows that the people of Peterborough will welcome John Tory's more centrist message.
The current Liberal MPP doesn't seem to be part of McGuinty's urban inner circle and therefore can't do a whole lot for his riding; he can only count on his party's leader to drop by and shore up support every few months. The PC Candidate, Bruce Fitzpatrick, can take this riding if he runs a disciplined and focused campaign aimed at extending the gains made by the federal Tories in '06 and by proving that he can get the goods for Peterborough.

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