Prediction Changed
12:32 PM 02/05/2007

Election Prediction Project

Thunder Bay—Atikokan
Ontario Provincial Election - 2007

Constituency Profile

Progressive Conservative
New Democratic

Thunder Bay-Atikokan (100%)
Bill Mauro

2003 Result (redistributed):

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07 10 12 R.D.
Yes I know its Friday AFTER the vote but the Chronicle Journal reports that because the unofficial margin was only sixteen, there will almost certainly be an automatic recount in Thunder Bay - Atikokan on Monday or Tuesday of next week.
The election isn't over yet!
07 10 08 Nick J Boragina
Both Thunder-Bay ridings, including this one of Atikokan, will be going Liberal. I think the NDP may have had some history here at points in the past, and I think that the PC Party actually polls well in parts of the city, but the reality now is the Liberals have the clear edge here. I just cant see anyone else winning.
07 10 06 Mark
All summer the Thunder Bay newspaper wondered about the effectiveness of Bill Mauro on the back benches. They doubted his ability to hold the seat, especially with the setbacks experienced in the forestry sector and the unpopularity of the Liberal Premier.
07 10 05 Derek James
Mauro (LPO) and Rafferty (NDP) argued a fair amount during the televised debates on TBT, but Mauro came off as more arrogant, which is a turn off to voters. Rafferty has run before, and came within 1000 votes in the 2006 federal election. He is well known and increasingly well liked. From a casual observation, the majority of lawn signs in the community, as well as the majority of campaign pamphlets, are NDP. The PC candidate is currently a city councillor, and changing her mind about which political arena she wanted to play in within the first year of her term probably won't be popular with voters, and she will be virtually unknown outside of the city. The NDP will most likely take this seat, with a fair margin.
07 10 02 Joe Sarcastic
A well known PC candidate drawing from a similar base and less hindered by a population angry at Harris/Eves, an NDP provincial campaign focused on northern ridings that is gaining traction by playing to the perception that the Liberals haven't done enough to help the struggling forestry industry, a non-impressive first term for Mauro and a decline in the Liberal campaigns overall provincial numbers will all chip away at Mauro's support.
In the end, Johnson pulls votes from Mauro's personal network and Raferty pulls weak Liberal votes to the NDP. Raferty takes it in a tight three way race.
07 09 27 Fozzy
John Rafferty has looked more promising in each election that he has run in, but continues to make key mistakes; he would probably fare better here by disassociating himself with Mr. Hampton';s style of politicking. He unfortunately has spent far too much time in front of the Atikokan post office, despite the fact that: a) the town votes resoundingly NDP every time, and b) Atikokan makes up less than 5% of the votes in the riding. My understanding is his funds are drying up, and if he fails to win the province, he'll take one more stab at it federally before hanging it up. It's make or break time for him.
Rebecca Johnson was a no-show to the all-candidates meeting in Atikokan, instead opting to watch the all-candidates meeting; this did not sit well with those who attended the meeting, especially since it didn't seem to be a problem for the Liberal, NDP and Green candidates to make it. Support for the CPC in this part of the riding has been virtually nil since Jack Pierce won it 22 years ago. She's a surprising non-factor in this riding, despite the hype that surrounded her nomination.
Bill Mauro has been an odd-duck in Atikokan, in that he hasn't been involved much with the people, trying to smooth over the announcement of coal plant closures in 2014. However, he's done a good job of advocating the community, and garnering attention and $$$ for the LVL plant, the co-gen, biofuel projects and using the provincial park as a base for studies. Also, Atikokan is finally, after years of bickering between the town and the MOE and the government, making upgrades to its water treatment facility. If Mr. Mauro is smart, he will be sure to include the elimination of constant annual water restrictions and boil-water advisories that have frustrated the residents of this town.
Prediction: a Liberal hold, a close NDP second place, and a split between the greens and CPC for third. Mauro has a chance to be something special, but could also fall flat on his face; now is his chance to make a move to cabinet.
07 09 26 RyanOntario
willing to say this one will go to one of the opposition parties but not sure if John Rafferty ndp or Rebecca Johnson pc will take it. but it will be close and Bill Mauro liberal mpp is tough competition . but i'm feeling this riding is protest vote material , especially after the atikokan coal plant and forestry sector problems. the liberals have simply ignored these issues and residents of these areas are not seeing results.
07 09 12 nesooite
Should be a Liberal win although it will be closer than expected. Thunder Bay is the most isolated city over 100,000 in the country and beats to its own drum. Not going to be influenced by province wide trends. Also slower to oust incumbents. This plus the fact that Tories and NDP both have reasonably strong candidates will cut the Liberal majority in the riding, but not enough to oust Mauro.
07 09 10 J.B.
Since my post back in May, my opinion has changed somewhat.
Previously, I believed that TB-A was going to be an automatic Liberal victory, but now I'm leaning towards a very weak Grit hold.
With the anti-Harris sentiment pretty much extinct, Mauro's support is guaranteed to dip dramatically. Both the NDP and the PCs are running very strong, popular, and competent candidates.
John Rafferty has run for the NDP (unsuccessfully) in almost every recent federal and provincial election, and his support has continually increased after each one.
Rebecca Johnson has been a very productive city councillor. People are going to cast a vote for her personally, as opposed to the PC party in general.
Mauro's loss of support is likely to be split evenly amongst these 2 candidates. You can't assume that all of those votes are going directly to the NDP.
In the end, he'll still have enough support to return him to Queen's Park.
07 09 10 MC
The NDP candidate here is a perennial candidate and does not seem to remember if he is running in a federal or provincial campaign, and in which riding. He had to cross out Thunder Bay-Rainy River on a lot of his signs and put down (on printed white paper which looks cheap), Thunder Bay-Atikokan. One would even wonder if this is legal under elections law. ...and that Mr. Rafferty's team can't even get their basic facts straight in their election materials (no- the City's biggest mill did not close Mr. Rafferty).
07 09 09 Dr Bear & Prof Ape
It seems that there are some disgruntled voters/Tory supporters that are venting their anger & frustrations by making predictions that are little more than pipe-dreams. Yes the Liberals are sagging in the polls in the north (Dr. Bear has moved up there now) but for the Torys to go from 17% to overcome a Liberal majority is just plain wishful thinking. If anything, this resource based riding will swing NDP long before it goes PC. Bottom line, the Liberals have enough strength to weather this storm in Thunder Bay, especially since the disgruntled voters will now unanimously swing to one party (more likely 2/3 of said voters go NDP and 1/3 PC). Liberal hold.
07 09 07 John S.
I think that the Tories stand a great chance in this riding. The McGuinty Liberals have dropped the ball big time in Northwestern Ontario - think closing the coal plant in Atikokan and the uncertainty it has brought to that community AND the Liberals refusal to give Northwestern Ontario its own hydro pricing independent of Toronto and southern Ontario. This refusal has cost thousands of jobs in the forestry sector and has had major ripple effects throughout the region. And Bill Mauro has been MIA...and now, during an election is taking credit for things that neither he nor the Liberals had anything to do with. Remember, the Tories created the medical school and funded the new hospital.
07 08 31 seamus
It is way too early to call this a Liberal hold. The Liberals are tanking in the North, the Tories have a well-known candidate and the NDP are doing well regionally and have a candidate that Thunder Bay-Atikokan voters almost elected as their MP. This riding, Sault Ste. Marie and maybe even Thunder Bay Superior North could be Liberal losses.
07 08 22 Rebel
Beware of most regional results! Especially for Northern Ontario, where the boundaries of the survey may include places like Barrie, Parry-Sound and Renfrew (all heavily PC).
The North is one region that changes less than out of the average between elections...and also where incumbents are very important...
I will also say that I am surprised at how heavily Thunder Bay votes Liberal is not consistent with its more independent long-term trend, but be it as it may, that is where their votes seem to park nowadays.
07 08 21 Ryan N
Ms. Johnson is popular in Thunder Bay, that's for sure, but she still doesn't stand a chance of stealing this riding away from Mauro and the Liberals:
1. She was elected city-wide to a council position. The TBay-Atikokan riding excludes half of her previous electoral support that resides on Thunder Bay's north side.
2. She's affiliated with the PCs. Yes, name recognition counts for a lot, but party association does account for a fair chunk as well. I voted for her in the 2006 municipal election, but this time around, she's not my #1 choice.
This is a PC/Conservative wasteland! The only way they'll ever garner a seat in this region is by defection (ie. federal MP Joe Comuzzi).
07 08 21 RyanOntario
from a recent ipsos poll .
In Northern Ontario, the Progressive Conservatives have pulled ahead, with 41% support, compared to the Liberals 34%. The NDP have 22% support.
if that polls and another which came out yesterday and said the same thing are accurate . then it looks like there might be some close and surprising races up north .
wouldn't rule out ndp candidate John Raffery or pc Rebecca Johnson as having a chance here .
07 08 17 A.S.
Unless the 'Boshcoff Tories' can be repatriated in a cinch, I can't see PC taking this, at least not now, not even with a popular councillor--especially with NDP holding the recent ?anti-Liberal? advantage around these parts. Then again, a PC prediction might be less farfetched than one of ?an even larger margin of victory than in 2003? for the Liberals. Look; 36 points is a pretty large margin to be sitting on--and that was before federal shrinkage, and a lot of that provincial Liberal vote was a more of a Lyn McLeod legacy vote, besides. With McLeod a fading memory, I won't say Bill Mauro will be defeated; more that his share will ?normalize?--but given rumours of Liberal troubles up north, my Grit prediction's more borderline than it ought to be...
07 08 01 J.F.
I dunno about this one... I kinda wonder whether Rebecca Johnson will take this one. In speaking with people, I've come to notice a bit of negative sentiment towards Mr. Mauro; whether she's deserving of it or not, Ms. Johnson is a well-loved politician in town. I figure that if anyone can give Mauro a run for his money, it's her.
07 05 13 J.B.
Strong Liberal area. Bill Mauro has done a respectable job as a rookie MP. With the incumbent advantage, he'll definitely be sent back to Toronto for a second term, with an even larger margin of victory than in 2003.
07 05 05 M. Lunn
This is a riding where the Liberals are quite strong provincially add, to the incumbent advantage, so Liberal win.
07 04 02 Ryan N
Another very safe Liberal seat.
Bill Mauro's previous political experience as a Thunder Bay city councillor will make him the best-known candidate within the riding.
This riding has consistently voted for the provincial Liberals since 1987, and I don't see it switching hands anytime soon.

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