04.21.2011 10:24 AM

Good thing I was so wrong on the Left getting together, eh?

Or, as I sometimes remind myself:  “I have no relationship with Warren Kinsella.”

116 Comments

  1. PoliticalStaples says:

    Today the NDP are not thinking about working with the Liberals, they are thinking about replacing the Liberals.

    • This isn’t today’s plan. The NDP have been hard at work at replacing the Liberals – honestly replacing them, not just saying it and half believing it – since Paul Martin.

      Today you are just seeing the fruits of their labour in Quebec… but it also has a lot to do with the alternatives. Iggy and Harper look much the same in some important areas (war) and that has always, always, been a big issue in Quebec and good for them for making war (anti-war by default, prove it to me otherwise) such an important factor in their political decision making. Their sensible stand on this and other social issues is one of the reasons I never want to see a Canada without Quebec.

      Harper thinks exactly the opposite. If he can’t win them over (he can’t) then he’ll veer hard the other direction. Expect Harper the ex-PM to become a big provincial rights advocate (again) and if that doesn’t work a western separatism advocate.

      PS: Add to CROP and EKOS another set of results from Forum Research in The Hill Times today.

      • PS: Ultimately meant to say that I don’t think the NDP *can* replace the liberals, not without disavowing itself from some of its more extreme members.

        Jack may present the face of moderation but within the activist ranks there is a very wide range of views, some of which for convenience sake if we label the far left would not appeal to mainstream Canadians and they can’t possibly become a national, electable, alternative to the Liberals without appealing mostly to mainstream Canadians.

        Mind you, Jack has earned his stripes as their leader. Were he to enter into negotiations on cooperation or coalition or merger or some sort of other formal relationship with some hypothetical future Liberal leader, Jack’s membership must place their trust in him. But would Jack be as ruthless as Harper in repressing the more radical views in his party? That’s what it would take.

        The potential for a schism forming within the NDP seems just as high as some ultra-socon group cleaving off of the CPC.

        Forget all that. A big chunk of Canadians are saying they are willing to take a chance on Jack and his party. Polls show a large number of Canadians would support cooperation right through coalition or merger.

        You want to really stop Harper? Make something happen that this *majority* group of Canadians wants to see, and let the more radical elements in all groups explode their own heads, the progressive centre will emerge out the middle just fine. Harper’s run over.

        Sounds like a plan to me.

        If Iggy isn’t up to it, there’s still snow around this country to walk in before May 2. 😉

      • I might be reaching a bit but somehow I doubt Harper will be willing to simply take a cushy job with a bank or law firm and lose all chance of implementing his political agenda. He’s only a year older than I am – so retiring with the Fraser Institute pals Manning and Harris is likewise out.

        Certainly he won’t go back to running the NCC, so where does he go? Provincial politics. Is that enough for him? I doubt it, unless he intends to make a big, big, splash.

        He’s really not in it for you, you know.

        Anyway… less grandiose statement of the day: Economic separation is pretty much the same thing as political separation.

        It is easy to see Harper arguing for the former because that’s been his thrust for decades now.

      • Ipsos Reid weighs in. NDP second place nationally at 24%.

  2. Dude Love says:

    These numbers look very familiar to the numbers when the PCs and Reform Parties split the right vote, giving the Liberals the win in almost every riding.

  3. artwilliams says:

    Sadly, these things get fixed long after they should. In a worse case scenario for the Liberals, if the NDP should beat them in the seat count then Jack Layton may not want to merge or only do so on terms very favourable to his party.

  4. Ted says:

    The rise of the NDP is interesting in its own right. Like it or not, think it’s good or not.

    But what is really exciting about this, and I say this as an ardent centrist/federalist, is that the NDP are clearly eating way into the Bloc pie – hooray! – and what that means about Quebec voters.

    It has been long assumed now that the Bloc was a given, entrenched, immutable. Now the NDP vote in Quebec could just be a “parked” vote or a temporary “protest” vote (like the Greens in the rest of the country), and of course it’s April 21 and not May 2 today… but, wow. If so called “separatist” voters can seem to support the NDP, that tells me that Quebecers outside of Montreal are just fed up with the traditional parties, Conservatives and Liberals, and their incessant pandering.

    Mulclair is clearly a core part of the NDP braintrust and they see that they have an important voice right at the decision making table. Ignatieff was headed in that direction with his first leadership race, but who are his key front liners? Garneau is great but he has not “risen up” from Quebec politics. Others who used to be core are not (perhaps for good reason, that’s not my point, but who is there right now is). For the Conservatives, there is only Harper Harper Harper who sees Quebecers only as votes to be won and not a populace. Before being PM he’s said a lot of nasty things even though he thought Reform should form a coalition with them and even though he wanted them to make him PM in 2004. As PM, he’s pandered and flip flopped and insulted and tried to make good and given and taken.

    But a mutable Bloc voter is exciting, or should be, for all federalists.

    This really is turning into an exciting and fascinating election.

  5. artwilliams says:

    Also, to be fair LISPOP at Wilfred Laurier University talked about the NDP rise in Quebec almost 10 days ago.

    http://www.wlu.ca/lispop/fedblog2011/?p=79

  6. jack says:

    If anything can be said it is that these polls are generally useless except for identifying POSSIBLE emerging trends. This is a sample of 981 people and without knowing the sampling technique vs what they actually did, I would say that it may be indicative but I wouldn’t trust ther numbers one bit. Note it also says “decided and leaning” voters. How many were decoded and how many leaning…..does leaning mean they will vote that way? I think not but it could skew the numbers. Polling firms like you to take their word for gospel but remember its their livelihood. IN fact, given whats been seen this election, if there’s one thing that can be said about polling, its that its inconsistent at best, useless at worst.

  7. bigcitylib says:

    No make it all sound so easy, but I don’t think it is, esp. in a minority parliament when an election might be called at any time during the merger process. Since the above numbers seem to give us a minority parliament, I can’t see merger talks getting much traction in the near future either. If the NDP actually manages to become the official opposition, what reason would they have?

  8. enough harper says:

    from a purely partisan position this is either horrible (liberal) or great (NDP) news. But unlike past polls showing big jumps, I think this one will carry forward for a while (past May 2nd). The NDP may not stay on par, but they will be above 20%. Vote splitting now becomes a more serious issue, but the fact that a big part of that jump is in Quebec likely means the rest of the country will be reasonably unaffected.

    For the libs, we’ve tried Martin, we’ve tried Dion, we’re tried Iggy. The messenger may be part of the problem, but by this point to deny that party culture is a serious element to Liberal woes would be foolish. Other than economic issues, there’s a shrinking difference between an under 27 Liberal and NDP supporter on many if not most policy issues. We rolled out a platform that sounded like an NDP platform on messaging, which likely blurred the lines to many. Rather than winning NDP supporters, there’s a good chance it further re-enforced the idea that it’s safe to vote NDP.

  9. pomo says:

    Now what?

    And WOW. Just wow. This weird-ass election is fascinating.

    • Ron says:

      you got that right
      if this kind of, for lack of a better word holds “trend”, the night of May 2nd will be interesting

  10. fritz says:

    This abortion question should blow up big time this afternoon on Harper when Peter Mansbridge, i his scheduled interview, asks him if he is defunding Planned Parenthood and follows up with more questions when the ‘The Great Leader’ tries to duck the issue.

    It’s a lose lose lose issue for Harper.

    If he says yes he’s defunding PP then he loses votes with women, economically conservitive but pro-choice Canadians and Quebecois.

    If he says yes he will fund PP then he creates havoc with his socially conservitive base.

    If he ducks the question he gets attacked for having a secret agenda and gets questions about this issue for the rest of the campaign.
    I love this story.

  11. gray says:

    NDP pre-election polling is notoriously mushy. People say one thing and then muscle memory takes over in the voters booth. I’d be tickled pink ( hah) if it turns out that way, but Jack doesn’t need to think about redecorating Stornoway just yet.

  12. Dr.J says:

    From my side…. I am glad you do not have any relationship with the count or the Liberals in this election….but do not fear it is just Frankie Graves numbers…..the CROP poll have the Libs at 3rd and 14% on the island of Montreal……that may become a blood bath for Libs there

    Cheers
    DRJ

  13. Ottawacon says:

    Whenever the NDP support levels get anywhere close to this, regional distribution becomes absolutely key, and I have not seen that. However, just looking at the limited information on Quebec, I am not convinced they would pick up an additional seat in the province. While their surge has to have an effect on races, I have no idea whether or not they siphon more of the Federalist vote or the Left-Sovereigntist vote. Layton’s irresponsible comments actually sort of suggest the second.

  14. Marc L says:

    The Liberal Party is not the “Left”.

    • JenS says:

      Everything is relative.

      • Marc L says:

        Then it’s meaningless. Warren himself in a post yesterday pointed out that the Liberals when successful have campaigned from the left and governed from the right. The relevant point is “governed from the right” (aside from the fact that it also implies that they are misleading the public during election campaigns). By no means is the Liberal party “left wing” based on the Chr/tien era for example.

        • Jan says:

          The B.C. NDP actually cut welfare rates while they were in power the last time. I wouldn’t be throwing any stones. Governing is not as easy as it looks.

  15. Rob says:

    Yep. We’ll know the Liberals are back on the path when you’re back in the fold.

  16. bigcitylib says:

    Oops: stupid typo. It should be:

    You make it all sound so easy, but I don’t think it is, esp. in a minority parliament when an election might be called at any time during the merger process. Since the above numbers seem to give us a minority parliament, I can’t see merger talks getting much traction in the near future either. If the NDP actually manages to become the official opposition, what reason would they have?

  17. Dan says:

    THE SKY IS FALLING!!!!!!!!!!

  18. dave says:

    Makes a bit of sense to me. Over the years I thought that the Bloc had a fair number of social democrats as MP’s. Very often the Bloc MP’s debate on issues in the House seemed to me to be in agreement with the NDP.
    If a ‘cooperative’ with the Libs in a minority parliament – a coop that leaves out the Bloc- is in the cards, I could see social democrat leaning voters who voted for the Bloc because they were leftie finding it easy to switch to the NDP.

  19. James Bow says:

    A little bit of trivia: if that is the level of popular support that materializes during election day, that would be a historic low — not just for the Liberals, or the Conservatives, but on many other levels:

    1. Lowest level of popular support ever accorded to the most popular party in an election (previous record held by Harper Conservatives in 2006 at 36.27%)
    2. Lowest level of popular support ever accorded to a political party in an election where they went on to form the government (previous record held by Clark Conservatives in 1979 at 35.89%
    3. The only election where the combined support of the Liberals and the Conservatives (or the Conservative aggregates of the PCs and Reform/Canadian Alliance together during 1993, 1997 and 2000) slipped below 60%.

    It suggests considerable public distaste for both front-running parties, and a desire for something new.

    • Namesake says:

      engendered by:

      4. Prime Minister exhibiting the lowest level of respect to the institutions of Parliamentary democracy, openness, transparency, and to the intelligence and values of Canadians: Stephen Harper.

    • fritz says:

      It’s apples and oranges Gord. You could be absolutely right and Harper will win a big majority with 37% of the vote. You could also be totally wrong and Harper could lose 60 seats with the same vote total.

      The only thing I can gather from watching and reading about this NDP surge in Quebec and what’s going on in other regions is that we haven’t seen this before (the NDP leading in Quebec) and no one knows what will happen on May 2nd.

      • Ron says:

        yeah picking a seat count is like picking the lottery numbers
        there are too many variables
        like they say the only one that counts is voting day

      • fritz says:

        Gord, in the the Chretien majorities both sides were divided: now it is only the left and they have been divided this way since the BQ started. Harper has already had three tries with the opposite divided and not received a majority.
        Harper may get a majority (I still doubt it though) but it will not be because the left is divided it will be because he got very lucky and his 1/3 or the vote will be split in such a way as to squeak it out.

  20. James says:

    Hi Warren, I’m not so sure if a Liberal-NDP merger would be necessarily a marriage of minds. The Liberals have deeper problems that won’t be resolved simply by hopping into bed with the NDP.

    Interestingly, here’s what Preston Manning had to say about the Liberals in an op-ed piece in today’s Globe and Mail (page A23):

    “Parties long in government, like the Liberal Party of Canada, tend to use up their intellectual capital and to deteriorate ethically. On losing office, they need a good 10 years in the wilderness to purge themselves of the intellectually and ethically challenged remnants of the old regime and to replenish themselves with fresh blood and new ideas. This has not yet happened to the Liberal Party that Mr. Ignatieff inherited, leaving him without the backup resources required to lead on issues where he himself is less than qualified to do so”.

    I’ve argued and highlighted all along in this excellent blog that the Liberals are in the midst of an existential crisis. Instead, I’ve been disparaged by menaces like Namesake and others who remain delusional about the Liberal Party and Iggy (and this entire election overall).

    Layton’s surge in Quebec is partly attributed to the fact that he is born in Montreal, and Quebecers have always shown a predisposition to a “native son”. There is also a degree of sympathy for his health battles. Young francophones in Quebec in particular are especially enamoured with him; when they take a look at Duceppe, all they see is a tired politican with that perpetual back-from-the-dead, Frankenstein look.

    • Ron says:

      James
      Exactly
      They need to build up from the grass roots again and “find themselves”

    • Craig Chamberlain says:

      I doubt a Liberal-NDP coalition would be as competitive as what we are seeing in Quebec with the NDP as it is with Mr. Layton as party leader. The NDP probably is happy to not have Liberal baggage when campaigning, especially in Quebec!

    • Namesake says:

      “existential crisis”? I doubt you know what that means.

      And honestly, you conbots crowing at these new poll results as though they represent the death of the LPC sound like Khrushchev pounding his shoe and saying to the Capitalist West: “We will bury you!”

      In the ‘He who laughs first…’ dep’t:

      Frank Graves was just on P&P with a preliminary seat projection from his new results, and noted: the NDP + LPC seats will EXCEED the CPC’s by 8, and so won’t need the BQ to pass bills together.

      And since the PM’s still adamant that he won’t cooperate and will go down in flames… well, that means a non-CPC minority gov’t of one sort or another, which is what I’ve wanted all along … and since there’s really not that much difference b/w their platforms anymore, and they’re both centrist parties, now, then that suits me just fine, whether it’s Layton or Ignatieff who becomes PM.

      • James says:

        No one is talking about the death of the Liberal Party. The point is that it’s become a diminished force in Canadian politics and will need to go through a “reinvention” and “rebirth” process that the Conservatives had to go through from 1993-2003. Hence Prestion Manning’s point.

        • Namesake says:

          And so your great political historian guru Manning is generalizing from, what, an ‘n’ of 1?

          That’s called a “Hasty Generalization,” where I’, from.

          And what actually happened there, anyway?

          The Conservative party that was: died.

          And Harper — aided & abetted by the treachery of MacKay — killed it.

          The ‘reborn, reinvented’ CPC party is ^NOT a renewed continuation of the Conservative Party, but of the Reform / Alliance Party. Old wine in a stolen bottle’s name.

          • James says:

            Namesake, you’re clearly from another planet. Again, delusional.

            The Conservatives basically came full circle to re-establish themselves as one whole again in 2003. And if it returned in a slightly different cast, so what? It’s called political reinvention. And it’s clearly been a huge success.

            In addition, the Conservatives under Harper simply reflect the political reality of the west enjoying and wielding greater influence, both politically and economically; recall the “west wants in”
            expression. For decades, the political power base of ther country was exclusively in Ontario and Quebec, but that’s changed.

            Namesake it must be difficult for you to accept that we’re no longer living in 1980.

  21. Al in Cranbrook says:

    Remember a while back I noted that the LPC no longer appears balanced by the likes of a John Manley, Frank McKenna or even Paul Martin? But rather it is dominated by a lot of all too visibly angry people of the likes of Holland and Goodale, no less topped off with an x-NDP premier with a not so hot resume increasingly looking like heir-apparent to the throne?

    Well, I’d suggest this is where it all comes back to bite Liberals. The more Liberal support starts looking like it’s collapsing from its left leaning voters peeling off to the NDP, the more justified, if not compelled, will its more centrist core feel in moving to the CPC, if for no other reason than to hold a bunch of Dippers and their bankrupt socialism, for which they have absolutely no use whatsoever, in check.

    I’m reminded of what happened to the PCs in 1993 when their western support went Reform, and the Bloc scooped up their Quebec voters.

    FWIW.

    • Al in Cranbrook says:

      Not to rub salt in a gaping wound, but…

      There’s a couple of ironies in all this.

      Had the LPC elected a definitely capable John Manley as leader instead of an inept Paul Martin, I deeply suspect none of this would be happening right now.

      And secondly, a merger of the Libs and Dippers is more likely now than ever. The looming irony is that, a la the dominant Canadian Alliance and struggling PCs, it also is likely that the NDP will be in large part dictating the terms thereof.

      • Patrick Murphy says:

        John Manley’s proposal of a currency union with the US is the single most dangerous idea ever proposed by a Canadian politician. See Greece and Ireland.

        If I had to choose between John Manley as PM and the Zombie Apocalypse, I vote Zombie Apocalypse. Twice.

      • Rick T. says:

        John Manley is more Conservative than Liberal. Always has been. Wrong party great ideas.

      • JStanton says:

        … very, very few would switch to “conservative”, but your point is probably how many would vote for Mr. Harper, and the answer to that is even fewer.

        What you Harper-groupies don?t appear to grasp, but for everyone else it is as plain as day, is that there is no equivalency between those like Mr. Ignatieff or Mr. Layton, for example, who engage in public service, and Mr. Harper, who simply indulges his emotional insecurities, despite or perhaps because of the damage it does to those around him.

        There is no “conservative” party; there is just Mr. Harper

        .

      • Jan says:

        I don’t know Gord – I guess there are a few that haven’t been personally insulted by the Con bot militia. I’m guessing you might pick up a few hundred.

    • Namesake says:

      FWIW = For What It’s Worth

      There’s somethin’ happenin’ here
      What it is ain’t exactly clear
      There’s a man with a gun over there
      Tellin’ me, I got to beware

      Lyrics By: Stephen Stills, w. Buffalo Springfield

      • Brine says:

        Soldiers with guns… on our streets?

        • Namesake says:

          well, a couple of days ago, Al here was threatening something akin to a Western militia spontaneously arising in the event of a coalition.

      • Paul R Martin says:

        Speaking of musical references, Dueling Banjos was a great song from the movie Deliverance. Will someone please deliver us from these dueling polls. Ipsos Reid shows a clear Conservative majority with the Liberals in third place. Something sure is happening here, but who is in second place is not exactly clear.

    • Not sure what your point is Al.

      The NDP moves in Quebec and elsewhere suggest that Canadians enjoy being in the centre, centre left space. People like John Manley do not occupy that space. Manley and Iggy (until Iggy’s recent conversion) are to the right of where the polls are showing a plurality, if not majority, of Canadians prefer to be. Neither Manley nor McKenna would reel Quebec in.

      Quebeckers surely aren’t going to find a soul mate in Harper, and Ignatieff leaves them cold despite having I think worked fairly hard to reform his image, he’s left Quebeckers (and others) not believing in his center-left reformation. Besides, Sun News flogging the Iggy War Planner theme or Harper painting Iggy as being pro Iraq certainly wasn’t going to help the CPC cause. For Quebeckers that leaves Duceppe or Layton, both running parties which are centre to left thinking.

      Early reports in this campaign labelled Duceppe’s campaign as limping; probably more accurately the people of Quebec were already prepared to ditch him, but they needed to see which alternative they’d have, if any.

      Does increased support for the NDP also mean diminished interest in separation and separatists? Or are they just looking to park their votes somewhere else? Maybe some of both.

      This isn’t like 1993 with the Reform/Bloc vote siphons. Heck, the Conservatives practically launched the Bloc. Both of those movements started before, both were geographically focused. NDP support didn’t start in this election, it has been building over past several elections, and they have more geographical reach than either the early Reform or the Bloc. At the end of this election they may have more geographical reach than the Liberals.

      At the start of the campaign I boldly ventured that Dosanjh (not so bold) would lose his seat and maybe also Joyce Murray in Vancouver Quadra and possibly Hedy Fry. I was thinking CPC might pick up one of those seats. As Iggy seemed to be doing better than expectations I’ve backed off.

      Now I’m starting to think that Murray is probably safe; Fry might not be; and Dosanjh may lose to the NDP or possibly the CPC via vote splitting. I spend a lot of time in Vancouver South and see a big upsurge in NDP support that hasn’t been there before.

      What if the surge in Quebec isn’t limited to just the shocking turnabout in Quebec, as well as BC and other “traditional” areas of NDP support?

      And doesn’t Harper seem much testier lately? 😉

      • Al in Cranbrook says:

        Michael…

        Several things to note.

        Both the latest Ipsos and Ekos polls show that the CPC leads in virtually every demographic. Notably, amongst those most likely to show up on May 2nd, the over 40 crowd, the CPC’s lead ranges from the low 40% to as high as 50%. According to Ekos they lead with over 40% in every major city except Montreal…including Toronto. And Ipsos has them leading with males at 50%, and with females at 36%.

        Point being, the CPC’s vote is about as efficient as it needs to be for a majority.

        I’ve watched federal politics closely for over 30 years. The Liberals traditionally have had the backing of business, who felt comfortable with their relatively moderate and enterprise friendly policies and leadership. This clearly is no longer the case, which is supremely manifested by their about face on corporate taxes. Calling this tax reduction “Corporate goodies”??? Maybe from Broadbent or Lewis, and certainly Layton, but a leader of the LPC???

        In BC the NDP for a while were a place to park a protest vote. When the Reform arrived on scene in ’93, the NDP immediately got wiped out. I’d suggest we’re seeing the rise of this phenomena in Quebec among voters who are tired of the Bloc and its principle fascination with separatism…which is good news for everyone. Yes, there is a considerable left leaning segment there…but outside of Montreal there also is a considerably more conservative element, evidenced over the years by particularly by the successes of the Creditistes and the ADQ. And currently there is a new party on the horizon that recent polls show would handily defeat both the PQ and Charest’s Libs. Frankly, I think the left wing attribution to Quebec is overstated by more than a bit, primarily by an also left leaning MSM who take comfort in such generalizations that favor their view of the world.

        Taking a quick look at 2008 results, and given this trend, I’d say that all but possibly one of the CPC’s seats are quite safe, and there’s real potential to pick up as many as another nine.

        In ’93 as the PCs imploded, the polarization in the west all but demolished both the NDP and the Libs. And the Bloc affected the same in Quebec.

        If this turns into another one of those pivotal moments in which a polarization shakes things out, the Libs, and to a lesser degree, the Bloc, stand to be the big losers.

        I remind everyone that the Reform emerged in ’88, won a bi-election in ’89 (Deb Gray) that was scoffed at by all, cleaned up in ’93, and continued growing from there. It took that long for things to start sorting themselves out…about the same length of time the Libs have had since 2006 (if not 2004).

        IMHO, the LPC has burned too many bridges, and lost their identity as a “centrist” party that had cohesion and appeal to the majority of Canadians who are, not left wing, but moderate and pragmatic. Ground which they’ve pretty much ceded to Harper and the CPC.

        Arguably this is final act in a play started way back when between the Martin and Chretien sides of the party. And inevitable.

        Harper testy? Actually, can’t remember when he’s ever played it so cool. Maybe he’s mellowing with age. Happens to us all sooner or later, eh? 😉

  22. TofKW says:

    Great!

    We first lost a centre-right party of confederation …to a gang of firebrand populist, US-Republican fashioned, right-wing ideologues.

    Now we may see the demise of the centre-left party of confederation …to a gang of firebrand populist, social engineering loving, poly-sci dropout, left-wing ideologues.

    Anyone else ever live though the NDP / SoCred swings in BC?
    It isn’t a desirable model for federal politics.

    • MCBellecourt says:

      Yup. I’ve lived in the northern half of BC for forty years as of next year., and I’ve seen it all. A never-ending merry-go-’round in this goofy province.

      There’s been a few out-of-province stints in my time here, but none were long enough to really put me out of the loop.

      And right now, BC is a dog’s breakfast, especially north of Hope. There’s an ongoing joke about this area being “beyond Hope”.

  23. ReidReid says:

    I like these polling numbers for several reasons:

    1. A Federalist party (regardless of which one) taking support from a seperatist party is good for all Canadians.

    2. The stronger the NDP, the more vote splitting will help the Conservatives.

    3. If the NDP manages to unseat the LPC as the Official Opposition, it is the end of the coalition. A 3rd place NDP would join a coalition led by a second place LPC because it gives the NDP a seat at the table, which they’ve never had before. A 3rd place LPC will never sit at the NDP’s table because it would be demeaning to them. The Libs have had more time running this country than not, and it would be a great insult to them to have to answer to the upstart NDP. You guys will never play second fiddle to Prime Minister Jack.

    It’s a great day to be a Conservative.

  24. Leo Fleming says:

    And what if this surge keeps up and the NDP come second to Harper. The Liberals would never swallow their pride and back Jack Layton as PM. It would destroy their long-term prospects. And if the NDP did come a close third, I’d bet you’d see Harper try to bring them into some sort of coalition. Harper hates the Liberals. The NDP despise the Liberals. It would be in both of their interests to raise the NDP to the level of the default centre/left party.

    Either way I don’t see this turning out at all good for the Liberal party.

  25. Lance says:

    In the UK during the 1922 Election, the Labour party overtook the Liberals as the main opposition to the Tories. The Liberals there have never regained that position.

    No one here thought that what is happening today could ever happen either. Food for thought.

    • Stuart says:

      No, he’s wrong.

      The coalition backlash that happened last time was because it seemed to come out of nowhere. The idea was new and scary.

      From the very first day the talk of a post-election coalition has been talked about as an option. Harper himself has framed this as an election between a majority government for him or a minority government with Ignatieff as the prime minister. The thought is no longer a shock. You can see from the polling numbers above that it’s not scaring people into backing Harper. It’s been said over and over so many times that people have become desensitized and are wondering if just maybe giving Iggy a chance will be a way out of this constant election madness.

      If only he hadn’t written off a coalition so early… But a minority with wink-wink agreements would work too.

  26. Craig Chamberlain says:

    I think this is showing that Mr. Harper overplayed his doom and gloom about a coalition and Quebeckers are deciding at this moment at least that they will choose being part of a coalition or similar arrangement through the NDP and removing Mr. Harper over being on the outside with the Bloc and having Mr. Harper as PM.

  27. It is a fallacy to sum up the NDP and Lberal supporters and expect them to support a new Liberal party. If the NDP and Liberals were to merge tomorrow, the Conservatives and Greens would be substantial beneficiaries. A great many Liberal supporters would cleave to the Conservatives, or the Greens based on their unwillingness to support any vestige of the Dippers, and while NDP defectors to the Conservatives would likely be limited to maybe 10% of their support, there would be a more substantial shift to the Greens. As far as absorbing the Greens, the GPC’s constitution was draughted with both eyes fixed on the destruction of the PC’s, and the threshold for dissolving the Party was set unattainably high. ( Multiple votes over 90% in favour). and any Green leadershp who attempted such a thing would be immolated.
    No, there is no shortcut around rebuilding the Liberal Party, and turning them into an effective fundraising and campaigning ‘machine’. If your Party is to achieve power, they will need to fix their organisation, and most especially become effective fundraisers.

  28. wassup says:

    I need to be careful what I wish for… Like so many Conservatives, I developed a pathological hatred for the Liberanos during the Trudeau era that was only reinforced under the Chretien regime.

    After a lifetime in the wilderness, finding power with Stephen Harper has been a dream come (almost) true. The final victory would be the death of the Liberal Party once and for all.

    But now, with our collective foot on the hated Liberal throat, I find myself wanting to pull back…

    What will we have accomplished if we slay this Liberal dragon, only to embolden & unify the leftist forces in the form of a phoenix like NDP? Our Conservative efforts to free ordinary Canadians from the burden of excessive taxation to pay the bloated salaries and pensions of our fat cat public servants will be lost.

    The so called “kind, gentle, and caring” left wing leaders will be free to destroy the lives of Canadians in their misguided mission to smother us in taxation and government regulation.

    • Baba says:

      Our excessive taxation is because of fat cat public servants? What percentage of our taxes goes towards their bloated salaries, wassup? So I can gather you support cuts to Veterans Affairs, then?

    • AmandaM says:

      So YOU’RE The guy. WHY is your hatred of the LPC more important to you than doing what is right for Canadians? Do you seriously only think that right wing parties are the only acceptable choices in Canada? I’d like a proper answer.

      I didn’t see one single bit of actual concern for good policy (just talking points) in your post, just vitriolic hatred. Isn’t it exhausting for you? Isn’t it a negative influence on your life? I’m not a fan of your kind, but I don’t want the CPC to die, because I understand that there must be a plethora of views to arrive at good solutions. And clearly, you all can’t figure out how to get more than about 40% support, so the majority isn’t a big fan either. You don’t hold majority viewpoints – it’s not a judgment of your character, it’s just a fact. Is it so hard to accept that Canadians are a progressive lot, who want what is best for society-at-large, the greater good, and then for you to find yourself a place in that paradigm?

      Your obvious hatred, and inability to temper it with practical solutions, is what puts people off of you. It radiates from your candidates and is what makes at least 60% of Canadians turn away from you in favour of positive, progressive policy options. As long as your hate is what is motivates you, you will be seen as extremists who don’t care about Canadians. You need a good long look in the mirror and ask yourselves why you cannot seem to garner more than about 40% support, and most of it in one province.

      Be honest with yourselves, and acknowledge that your only solid support is in Alberta and outside of major cities is seriously problematic if you want to get more support than the combined progressive parties do. We all know that on most issues, there isn’t too much daylight between the centrist/left-centre parties, and you will need to address the same things to pull support from the LPC/NDP/BQ from a policy perspective (outside of separatism). It just makes it THAT more obvious that your views are in the minority, and that’s why you have minority government. Canadians don’t trust you with the security code to the house, so they require you to be babysat. It’s happened in several elections now, accept it, and move on.

      Live with the fact that this will country will never accept there only being right-wing choices – we are not the US, we are not afraid of policy that addresses the greater good, in fact we strive for that. You cannot silence 60% of Canadians because you will it to be so. So please, answer the questions honestly. I promise I won’t judge your answer.

      • wassup says:

        What part of “I HATE THE LIBERAL PARTY OF CANADA and want it destroyed” did you find so confusing Amanda?

        Maybe after a generation of having your core political beliefs dragged through the mud you’ll learn to hate, and I mean really hate my Conservative Party. Then maybe you’ll have the balls to actually get in the ring and fight for your beliefs. In the meantime, you are just another delusional elitist liberal who thinks you are right and the rest of us are misguided fools. E

        • AmandaM says:

          Oh dear. So blinded by hate and only interested in the supremacy of your party above all things, even what is actually good for Canada. I don’t think I, or the LPC, is RIGHT, as in, CORRECT. I think we need all voices. You appear to think only one, in the form Stephen Harper as a benevolent dictator, is the only way forward. That’s fine, it’s the way you think, and I believe your voice belongs in the conversation. However, it’s not a viewpoint that is solutions-oriented for all Canadians. It would appear that a “desert island” scenario would suit your purposes.

          Elitist. Honestly. I’m a single mother with a bachelor’s degree. Hardly elitist. According to your definition of “elitist”, being a person who thinks they are right and the rest are misguided fools, that would, actually be you. You think I, and people like Warren and non-CPCers are wrong, and misguided fools, and that you are right, no? One day, you’ll realize that the needs of all Canadians are more important than party politics. Until that day, I seriously think you should consider getting out of the game. Because you’re not actually playing it and what, after all, is the game for? It’s supposed to be about continuing to build our society through the choices we make. You cannot pretend that the solutions you espouse (when you actually talk about solutions and not just talking points) are the only options, nor are they always the best options.

          You know, it’s totally OK to not follow someone blindly and not think for yourself – if you do, you’re in a cult. It’s totally OK that a good idea might come from Rona Ambrose or Brad Wall or Ralph Goodale or Christy Clark or Donna Cadman or even Jim Flaherty (I agree with increasing funding to CIHR – a lot of good work is being done there, it’s progressive, i.e. the research is progressing in finding answers to health science questions). It matters WHAT the idea is, not from WHOM the idea came. See what I’m saying? Take off your blinders, my friend, there’s a whole world of great ideas out there, and as long as people concern themselves more about who ideas come from instead of the merits of ideas, nothing moves forward. Parties co-opt each other’s ideas all the time, because a good idea is a good idea – it doesn’t matter who comes up with it. But as long as it matters to you, your passion and energy is misplaced, and no one benefits. It’s just sad to see, actually, because we all could benefit from someone who is clearly engaged, but who is instead playing the role of party thug.

          I’m in the ring, my friend, and have been for a long time. Don’t think you know me or what I do with my life any more than I know you. You don’t get to have a double standard.

  29. W.B. says:

    Somebody should be organizing a strategic voting campaign. Riding by riding who to vote for to keep Harper from a majority. That’s first things first. Then the Libs and NDP have to sort out a merger pronto.

    • Michael Reintjes says:

      Why do you guys continue to believe that the N.D.P. is somehow begging for the Liberal Party to come and save them from their ways?

    • Dan F says:

      There are already 6 (by my last count) strategic voting recommendation sites up and running, all with the explicit objective of defeating Harper, but many of them are offering contradictory advice about who do vote for in a given riding in order to achieve that outcome. Obviously not an ideal solution

  30. Transplanted Doerite says:

    Dippers and others should take these numbers with a grain of salt. They’ve been in the 25% range before with two weeks to go, only to fall back to their 16-18% by e-day. And, as Capstick said on Power and Politics today, NDP insiders are anxious about the “realness” of the numbers and, of course, past history.

    Having said that, perhaps it’s time to consider that Canadians have had sufficient time to adopt and absorb the reality that NDP governments have been successful provincially – see MB and more recently NS – campaigning from the right and governing from the centre (to borrow and tweak your phrase)? That is, perhaps an increasing number of Canadians no longer buy the myth of the “tax and spend socialists,” even though the federal party has yet to jettison much of it’s far left rhetoric in favour of these Third Way strategies employed by their provincial counterparts and notwithstanding the lingering memories (albatross) of the Rae years in ON. Something to think about at least.

    As an aside on your theory/argument on whether the Libs should have gone left or not, let me say that I generally agree with you. However, the chink in the strategy is Iggy. One has to be able to implement and deliver it. And has to be seen as credible and plausible. Iggy cannot do those things. So even if they did adopt it (or keep to it if they did in fact start on it), it wasn’t gonna work. Maybe if it was JC or someone else at the rudder, but not Iggy and not especially given the campaign that Jack et al have run.

    Cheers

  31. R says:

    http://ca.news.yahoo.com/blogs/dailybrew/u-president-barack-obama-pokes-fun-facebook-mark-195508019.html

    http://www.ctv.ca/mini/election2011/polltracker/index.html

    I British Colmbia and Praries and Qubec ndp are higher than liberal
    in Ontario and Atlantic Canada we have liberal higher than ndp

    both can complete each other to merge then

    close left is 48.8 percent vs. conservative 39%

    in leadership Layton is higher index than Ignatieff 66.6 vs. 36.7 still Harper is higher than two others

    if liberal and ndp plate from merge as one then who need to be leader is that a question ?

    =====
    solution to leader as best PM may be need to let Harper back to become young and become join liberal party again
    Rocco back to conservative is possible then Harper join left is possible too

    Harper orginally who look for power ask NDP to help him and they did not may be time to pull Harper out of hand of conservative party

  32. dave says:

    I am wondering if, now that the BC NDP leadership is over, if there will be a bit of an increase in NDP energy into the federal election , especially in close ridings, – and if it will have some effect.

  33. The other George says:

    In many respects, the poll shows kind of a trend of a thousand people. That’s about it. Nothing to get excited about.

    With a ‘first past the post’ system, and the fact that many people, with pencil and ballot in hand, will vote in a manner more sanguine than answering a hypothetical question, I dare say that the Con numbers stay the same, the Libs go up, the Dippers go down and Bloc stays about the same and the Greens go back to their 4 percent.

    I am of the ‘move along folks” frame of mind with this and most polls.

  34. Cam says:

    As I keep saying, there is not going to be a Conservative Majority. Give this puppy a little more time and all the Conservative nonsense is going to catch up with them. People are not stupid; some may be blind, but not stupid. Tick, tock, tick, tock ?

  35. trollseeker says:

    Just because the NDP is showing gains does not mean they will transpire to much more seats come May 2nd. What it tells me is that there are votes out there to be had– they have been shaken out of the Bloc and the Conservative camps. The voters are looking and showing interest in JACK. Doesn’t mean on May 2nd- that they’ll end up going home with him. Stay tuned I suppose. Loose votes to me mean there is possibility for the Liberals. WK always seems to use these simplistic polls to affirm his position that the NDP and the Liberals should merge. There must be better evidence than that cause those polls don’t say much. Even if you look right now at those 2 numbers – it does not mean adding them up would result in 50% approval. The Lib supporters might not stay and neither would the NDP supporters. Heck most of that NDP uptick is in Quebec– and let me tell you- they would most probably just move back to the Bloc if they merged.

  36. Mike says:

    First past the post is designed for two party politics. Time to bring the Libs and NDP under one roof.

    Left majority please.

    • Jim says:

      You Libs keep telling yourself that a merger is your savior. In reality the truly left NDP dreams and plans for the death of the Liberal Party just as much as the CPC.

      You Libs are so smug and arrogant….you are headed for utter destrution as a party, yet I have seen comments calling the electorate stupid.

      Get over yourselves…most of Canada has.

  37. Cam says:

    Agreed – long past time for the left to merge.

    Had a chance to sniff around the net. It now appears even stronger to me that Mr. Harper isn?t going to get his majority. The allegation respecting Mr. Soudas and the Montreal Port Authority, the honest Conservative MP out west, and Mr. Kent’s denunciation, all add further ammunition to the nonsense finally catching up with Mr. Harper. I would suggest the Liberals stop the negative ads and go mega positive from here on! Mr. Harper and his gang are doing enough negative all on their own.

  38. Dave in Maple Ridge says:

    Pssssttt! IPSOS says 43%CPC, 24%NDP and 21%Lib!

    What now?

  39. Mike_02 says:

    Well knock me over and call me Susan, my CAPTCHA Code for this comment is FUBA, just one letter short of what’s going on in this election. Polls are like ragweed pollen, they’re irritating and of use only to their species IMHO. I sure hope they’re right though, ’cause even though I back the Liberals, I think it’s time the political scene gets an angioplasty to clear out all that dangerous plaque of stupid ideas. Yes, I know, you think that’s a stupid idea too — but I had scratch my allergic itch.

  40. Sithe r john eh says:

    Just about now Dalton Mcginty is shittin his pants. And who do you think is assisting with his campaign? Our fearless Warren and his late model crew of political hacks!

    Dalton might want to rearrange the deck

    • Dan F says:

      Actually, Ontario tends to go in the opposite direction of a Federal vote when they occur in rapid succession. I’d guess a Harper win would be just fine with Dalton. (Also, if Harper loses power, there will be piles of Con staffers with nothing to do for 6 months but throw themselves at the nearest provincial campaign. Not an ideal situation if you’re a provincial Liberal

    • Paul says:

      John,

      Dalton will be ‘happy’ if Harper wins. Ontario almost always elects the opposite stripe. Go back 30 years and you will find this to be true.

      Dalton like Harper has some warts and if Harper wins, he will too.

      • Sithe r john eh says:

        actually i was refering to the threat of Andrea Horwath.

        On E day 32 Jack layton was written off for dead in the campaign. Bum hip, cancer. No one and i mean no one predicted the ndp would gain any additional seats or leap frog over the bloc in the good province popular vote.

        i am just saying thats all

  41. Chubsy Ubsy says:

    This might surprise some of you, but I think McGuinty is doing an alright job compared with what might happen if you give the wheel to the current crackpots in the Ontario PCs. I think you’ll be surprised that Ontarians aren’t quite done with McGuinty(and this is coming from a true blue federal Tory).

  42. R says:

    Don’t give up if you have good heart and good intention to help public and people, god will help you

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EGLSk3AVcUU&feature=related

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qiu6RMMNERs

  43. James Curran says:

    Here’s what I get out of all this bullshit. The NDP get to keep Outremont. Period. End quote. The only other seat they have a shot in in PQ is Gatineau. So, while it’s nice they are leading in the province, therefore throwing the entire set of national numbers off, it is meaningless. Tom Mulcair and Jack Layton are no Mario Dumont. I don’t care what Cantelle Hebert thinks.

  44. Tiger says:

    I’m not a McGuinty fan. I’ll be voting against him again this fall. (I want my medium hamburgers and cheap beer, dammit.)

    But if we see a Harper majority, combined with a Ford mayorship in Toronto — I think there’s a pretty persuasive argument to be made by the premier’s team that Ontarians should hedge their bets.

    So if there’s a Harper majority on May 2nd, I predict a third McGuinty majority on October 6th.

      • Ron says:

        depends though on how all parties state their positions and who’s better at the marketing end of those positions
        it to will be interesting

    • Cat says:

      Agree with you Tiger. I think that those pissed at McGuinty will(are) taking it out on Ignatieff. What I would worry about if I were Dalton is that any of the losers from the federal LPOC, with their teams in tact enough, run provincially. You don’t suppose that a defeated Ignatieff would move to provincial politics do you WK? Perhaps challenge Dalton at some point?

      I also see the Ontario NDP getting a huge boost from Layton’s success – enough to begin nipping at Hudak’s heels.

      • Warren says:

        Any of you who know me know I’ve been more preoccupied with Andrea than Tim for about a year.

        • Ron says:

          and I was going to make a comment earlier about the 1990 election when no one saw the NDP as a threat
          I’ve listened to her speak several times…yeah I believe you are absolutely correct in your view there

          • Cat says:

            can we look for some unsuccessful federal Ontario NDP candidates moving to the provincial scene? I’m thinking yes….especially where they would come a close 2nd….think Peggy Nash.

  45. James Bow says:

    Given the depth and breadth of poll soup in this campaign (Ekos Cons at 34%; Ipsos Cons at 43%), I propose that we gather all of the pollsters on camera on May 3rd.

    The one pollster that got closest to the election day results gets $10,000…

    All the others get cream pies in the face.

    You in for that?

    • Cat says:

      I’d pay to see that James – might be a great idea to add some of the MSM and PPG to that as well because if you ask me they’re the biggest losers over this election campaign because thanks not only to new media and technology traditional networks campaign pimps have become very close to being irrelevant in their reporting.

  46. James Curran says:

    What? That his “leadership numbers” are ridiculous calculations of inaccuracy?

  47. The Dude says:

    When people like Chretien, Broadbent, Romanow, and the rumoured Joe Clarke talk about merging The LPC and NDP, people should have listened. I still think it is not too late. I’m sure the conversation will happen if the Reform Tea Party get a majority and cut party funding. You can tell it was a scary idea to conservatives when they made sure to attack it last June. Besides, the NDP have become more centrist

    • AmandaM says:

      Don’t you worry, though, about the tent becoming TOO big?

      60-odd per cent of Canadians represents a huge variety of viewpoints, and sooner or later, the l-liberals and quasi-socialist Dippers will alienate each other and we’ll be left with a fractured centre/left again. It’s very difficult to be everything, all of the time, to 20 million Canadians. Is there really more to unite the 60 per cent than divide it? If everyone in the 60 per cent (and their reps in the parties) were the Chretiens, the Broadbents, the Romanows and the Clarkes, yeah, for sure. But you have the Nashes and the and the Szabos as well. I think it might last until everyone forgets their party manners, and we need to stop looking at solutions to get into government RIGHT NOW and concern ourselves with longer-term options.

  48. reformatory says:

    Globe and Mail article on Sunday April 24 “Clarity on the alternative to the Conservatives”- that pretty well sums up the intellectual reasoning and raison d’etre why Liberals don’t automatically see the Lib/NDP merger thing happening.

    If it is even ever considered though- for starters everybody who refers to it MUST stop calling it a merger of the LEFT. The Liberal party is NOT a left party. They are firmly in the centre. If the merger is to be viable it must be the NDP joining the Liberals in the CENTRE. Until that basic premise is understood- any righteous Liberal will get their back up and be in a cranky mood.

  49. AndrewOpala says:

    This is pretty awesome stuff … you can see the NDP public opinion wave developing

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