Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Front-Runners Campaign to Appeal to Base in Final Days before Manitoba Vote

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Front-Runners Campaign to Appeal to Base in Final Days before Manitoba Vote

Article excerpt

Manitoba PCs, NDP appeal to base in election stretch

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WINNIPEG - Manitoba's election campaign has entered its final days with the leaders of the two main parties focusing on their key messages as they hustle for votes in the home stretch.

The New Democrats continue to focus on health care and the Progressive Conservatives are driving home a tax reduction plan for the middle class.

One political analyst expects the two will stay on defence, but he doesn't expect that will do much to close the gap between them.

Tory Leader Brian Pallister stopped at a school and surrounded himself with families on Wednesday as he again outlined a plan to reduce taxes, which he said would save the average taxpayer $2,020 over four years.

In the evening, the Tories were to hold another over-the-phone townhall and knock on thousands of doors, Pallister said.

"I never take anything for granted. I believe you run through first base, not to it," he said.

A recent poll shows that the opinions of many Manitobans have remained largely unchanged since the campaign started in mid-August.

The survey by Probe Research Inc. said the Tories were the most popular party and their lead had decreased only slightly. Forty per cent of respondents planned to cast a Tory vote, down from 42 per cent in June.

The New Democrats were at 29 per cent, up three points from June.

The Manitoba Liberals were at 18 per cent, the Greens were at 10 per cent and 12 per cent of respondents were undecided.

The survey was commissioned by the Winnipeg Free Press and CTV Winnipeg and involved 1,200 people who responded to an online survey. It was done between August 13 and 24. Probe said the results provincewide have a margin of error plus or minus 2.8 per cent, 19 times out of 20.

Pallister would not comment on his sizable lead. He said he believes an old adage that polls are for fences. …

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