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Public Opinion Survey Following the March 19th, 2012 By-election in Toronto–Danforth (Ontario)


Phoenix Strategic Perspectives Inc. was commissioned by Elections Canada to conduct a survey of electors eligible to vote in the March 19th, 2012 by-election.

Background and Objectives

Elections Canada, an independent, non-partisan agency that reports directly to Parliament, is responsible for monitoring and conducting federal elections in Canada. As part of its evaluation program, the agency wanted to conduct a survey of electors in the Toronto–Danforth (Ontario) electoral district in which a by-election was held on March 19th, 2012. The purpose of the survey was to evaluate electors' opinions, experience, attitudes and knowledge of the agency's services and various aspects of the electoral process.

More specifically, surveyed Canadians were consulted on the following issues:

The results will be used to assist in evaluating and refining Elections Canada's programs and services to the electorate, and to provide information that will help inform the Chief Electoral Officer's recommendations to Parliament.

Research Design

A telephone survey was conducted with 750 eligible electors. Eligible electors were Canadian citizens, at least 18 years of age on March 19th, 2012, who were residents of the Toronto–Danforth federal electoral district from February 15th, 2012, the first day of revision, until March 19th, 2012, election day. Based on a sample of this size, the overall results are accurate to within ±3.6%, 19 times out of 20. The margin of error is greater for results pertaining to subgroups of the total sample.

The following specifications applied to the survey:

For a more complete overview of the methodology used in this research, please refer to the methodology note included under separate cover.

Note to Readers

Footnote a In the HTML version published on Elections Canada's website (, these boxes are delineated by a hidden tag inserted before, labeled "Beginning of box" and one inserted after, labeled “End of box” in order to enhance accessibility of the document.

Footnote 4 It must be noted that the results from the 2011 general election reflect the opinion of electors across Canada, while the results from the by-election only reflect the opinion of electors within the electoral district of Toronto–Danforth.