Poll Projects NDP on Course to Secure 60 Seats

April 22, 2011 Updated: October 1, 2015

New Democratic Party leader Jack Layton waves to the crowd as he boards the bus with his wife, NDP Member of Parliament Olivia Chow, following the NDP's campaign kickoff event at the Chateau Laurier in Ottawa on March 26. (Geoff Robins/AFP/Getty Images)
New Democratic Party leader Jack Layton waves to the crowd as he boards the bus with his wife, NDP Member of Parliament Olivia Chow, following the NDP's campaign kickoff event at the Chateau Laurier in Ottawa on March 26. (Geoff Robins/AFP/Getty Images)
Jack Layton and his rising New Democrats are on track to increase their seats in the House of Commons from 36 to 60 in the upcoming May 2 election, according to a new EKOS Research poll projection.

The EKOS survey, released on Thursday, shows that 24.7 percent of the population intends to vote for the NDP, the same percentage as for the Liberal Party. The Tories are at 34.4 percent nationally, the Green Party is at 7.8 percent, and the Bloc is at 6.5 percent.

Based on EKOS’ opinion polling, if election were to happen right away, the Conservatives would win a diminished minority as the NDP rises to have more seats. EKOS projects that Conservatives would gain 134 (43.51 percent) of the 308 seats in the House, the Liberals at 82, the NDP at 60, the Bloc at 32, and none for the Green Party or independents.

EKOS notes that the public is not willing to give Prime Minister Stephen Harper a Conservative majority. If the public drifts back to the Conservatives, then a minority would be secured, but if they go the other way, it would be either Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff or Layton.

“It is quite unlikely that these results are the final public judgment of Campaign 41 and it will be very interesting and important to watch what happens over the long weekend as the electorate ponder where they have arrived,” EKOS says in a release.

In addition to the EKOS poll, an Ipsos Reid poll published Thursday puts the NDP ahead of the Liberals for the first time in a few decades.

Even though the New Democratic Party secured 18.18 percent of the popular votes in the 2008 federal election, they only rounded up having 11.69 percent of seats in the House.