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Liberals lead in Yukon federal election race, poll suggests

A new poll suggests Liberal candidate Larry Bagnell has a significant lead over his two main opponents, Conservative incumbent Ryan Leef and NDP candidate Melissa Atkinson.

Environics poll puts Larry Bagnell at 39 per cent support, Ryan Leef third

Liberal Larry Bagnell, Conservative Ryan Leef and the NDP's Melissa Atkinson at an election candidates forum hosted by the Yukon College Students Union, Sep. 23, 2015. (Dave Croft/CBC)

A new poll suggests Liberal candidate Larry Bagnell has a significant lead over his two main opponents, Conservative incumbent Ryan Leef and NDP candidate Melissa Atkinson.

The Leadnow/Environics poll puts Bagnell in front with the support of 39 per cent of decided voters. Atkinson is in second with 29 per cent, Leef is in third with 27 per cent, and Green candidate Frank De Jong trails with four per cent support.

"I'm very encouraged by that number. It's an excellent result considering we got started here on behalf of the Yukon NDP in July," Atkinson said. "It's given me a boost and we're getting out there."

Bagnell's campaign said it's Liberal policy not to comment on polling results. Leef was not available for comment.

Leef defeated Bagnell in the 2011 election by fewer than 130 votes. The NDP captured just eight per cent of the vote in that election.

The 2011 Green candidate, John Streicker, took 19 per cent, a better result than any Green candidate except leader Elizabeth May, who won her British Columbia seat.

De Jong said he thinks Green support appears to be collapsing because many Yukoners plan to vote strategically against the Conservatives.

"A lot of people were upset, rightly or wrongly, with John Streicker and the Green Party for giving us Ryan Leef," he said.

The poll was commissioned by the lobby group Leadnow, which is commissioning polls in ridings where Conservatives are in close races in an effort to promote strategic voting against the Tories. Yukon was one of 31 ridings studied in the poll.

The Yukon poll was conducted between September 19 and 21. It surveyed 497 voting-age adults and is considered accurate within 4.4 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

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