Incumbents tied in Toronto-St. Paul's and Scarborough Southwest, poll finds

A new poll says incumbent councillors in two wards in Toronto's municipal election are in virtual ties with less than a week to go before the vote.

Poll by Mainstreet Research says races in 2 wards too close to call in last week of civic election campaign

Joe Mihevic, left, is in second place behind Josh Matlow, right, in the ward of Toronto-St. Paul's, but the race is too close to call, according to a poll by Mainstreet Research. (CBC)

A new poll says incumbent candidates for councillor in two wards in Toronto's municipal election are in virtual ties with less than a week to go before the vote.

Mainstreet Research, in a poll released on Tuesday, says the races in Toronto-St. Paul's and Scarborough Southwest are too close to call.

Josh Matlow leads Joe Mihevc by 1.8 per cent in Toronto-St. Paul's, while Gary Crawford leads Michelle Holland-Berardinetti by 2.8 per cent in Scarborough Southwest, according to polls conducted in the wards on Oct. 10 and 11.

"While Matlow and Crawford have narrow leads in their respective races, all four candidates will need strong finishes and get-out-the vote efforts to win, as it is impossible to rule out victories by either Mihevc or Holland-Berardinetti,"  Quito Maggi, president and CEO of Mainstreet Research, said in a news release.

All four candidates are incumbent councillors. They are facing off against each other after the province cut the number of Toronto wards from 47 to 25 last month. 

Many undecided voters polled

According to the polling firm, there are still a high number of undecided voters, which means the poll results are far from certain.

Also, CBC News's research department points out the poll had a hard time reaching younger voters, and even though the data was weighted, those between the ages of 18 and 34 are under-represented.

The poll by Mainstreet Research comes with less than a week to go before Toronto goes to the polls. (Lauren Pelley/CBC News)

Maggi noted that the polls were conducted before mayoral candidate John Tory endorsed Mihevc last week and the effect of the endorsement on that race is not yet known.

Tory endorsement gives boost to Brad Bradford

The polls looked at races in two other wards, Beaches-East York and Don Valley East, and the results in one ward show the potential impact of an endorsement by Tory.

In Beaches-East York, former MP Matthew Kellway is in the lead with 43.7 per cent support, but Brad Bradford, a candidate endorsed by Tory, has nearly 32 per cent support. In previous polls, Bradford barely registered, but the Tory endorsement gave him a boost, Maggi said.

"The Matlow campaign will carefully look at these results in Beaches-East York as they show the potential impact of a Tory endorsement," Maggi said.

"We didn't list Bradford as an option in our last Beaches-East York poll and he could not have been this high if you look at the 'another candidate' totals in our previous poll. 

"Tory's endorsement has certainly given Bradford a big boost, and could give Mihevc the win if there is a similar impact in Toronto-St. Paul's."

An endorsement by John Tory has given Brad Bradford, a candidate in Beaches-East York, a boost, says Mainstreet Research. It remains to be seen how Tory's endorsement of Joe Mihevc affects the race in Toronto-St. Paul's. (John Rieti/CBC)

In Don Valley East, incumbent  Denzil Minnan-Wong has 43.2 per cent support, while former MPP and Liberal cabinet minister David Caplan has 24.4 per cent support among decided voters.

Mainstreet says it polled 608 people in Toronto-St. Paul's, with a margin of error of plus or minus 3.96 per cent. In Scarborough Southwest, it polled 615 people, with a margin of error of plus or minus 3.93 per cent.

It says 572 people were polled in Beaches-East York, with a margin of error of plus or minus 4.08 per cent. Meanwhile, in Don Valley East, 479 people were polled with a margin of error of plus or minus 4.46 per cent.