Andrea Horwath’s NDP finished 2020 with $6.4 million in the bank and no debts, leaving Doug Ford’s governing Conservatives far behind in the fundraising race, according to year-end financial statements filed with Elections Ontario.
The next Ontario election is scheduled for June 2, 2022. An Angus Reid poll released last week showed the governing Conservatives and opposition NDP in a close race with the PCs ahead at 37 per cent, while the NDP held the support of 33 per cent of Ontarians.
The poll was taken before the Ford government announced its controversial use of the notwithstanding clause to restrict the freedom of expression set out in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
While Horwarth's NDP held $6.4 million and no debts, at the end of 2020 the Conservative Party had $2.9 million in debt and $5.0 million in party bank accounts.
According to the filings, the Conservatives narrowly led the NDP on revenues in 2020, pulling in $8.4 million compared to the NDP’s $8.1 million. The average NDP donation was $26. The average contribution to the Conservative party was over $500.
But big expenses at Conservative party headquarters meant the governing party added half the of what they opposition NDP put into its bank account. The Conservatives had expenses of $6.4 million in 2020 while the NDP spent $3.9 million. After expenses, the Ontario NDP had net revenue of $4.3 million, more than double the Conservatives’ net revenue of $2.0 million.
The Ontario Liberals pulled themselves out of debt in 2020, raising net revenues of $2.4 million and ending the year with $2.3 million in the bank, according to their year-end statements. At the end of 2020, the Green Party’s bank account held $1.5 million after net revenues of $0.6 million.