Monday, 19 November 2012
Trudeau knocking out NDP's chances of forming gov't?
|Justin Trudeau, pictured after a charity boxing match.|
Trudeau is the "perceived frontrunner" in the
Liberal leadership race.
Liberal poll numbers have risen following
his entry into the race.
Image Source: REUTERS/Chris Wattie
Posted in the National Post.
The Liberals have longed look for saviours in leaders. Slapping on a new face is a hell of a lot easier than changing the party, after all.
First there was Dion - crushed by Tory attack ads as "not a leader". Then there was Ignatieff - tarred by Tory attack ads as a "cosmopolitan", fair-weather Canadian, and Liberal elitist. Finally came Rae's brief, intern leadership - only for Rae to be blown off as a bad Premier of Ontario (the actual facts be damned, of course).
The irony about most Liberal "saviours" is that the were always old, white men well entrenched in the Liberal Party establishment who really weren't telegenic at all. I'm sure they could all work a room, but Dion, Ignatieff, and Rae aren't the type of people I see resuscitating a dying behemoth. If anything, they reminded voters of what an old and antiquated an institution the federal Liberal Party could be.
|Will Tom Mulcair withstand a Trudeau-led Liberal|
Party? And will the NDP form government
next election while bleeding support to the Liberals?
Image Source: Canadian Press/Adrain Wyld
Post on CityTV Toronto.
If the Liberals ever had a candidate for Party saviour, Justin Trudeau surely is the best fit.
But what does this mean for Tom Mulcair and the New Democrats' prospects for reorienting Canadian parliamentary politics around a rightwing party facing off against a centre-left populist party?
From earlier on this blog:
Trudeau is running on a centre-left populist platform - promising shared prosperity, a strong middle class, more equality of opportunity and a unified Canada. A Liberal Party under his leadership would certainly compete intensely with the NDP for the centre-left section of ideological turf, especially given that building the Liberal Party in the West and Quebec seems to be a major objective of Trudeau - two key regions the NDP's seeking to establish a strong base of centre-left support in.The message, of centre-left populism in a post-2008 crash/post-Occupy age, is a vote winner. US President Obama won re-election talking like a centre-left populist. Senate and House Democrats south of the 49th parallel won based on centre-left populist platforms. Canada isn't at rock-bottom, unlike the home of the global meltdown (the US) or the home of the stupidest response to it (the Tory austerity-suffering UK). The Conservative leader here is not an obvious country clubber or plutocrat, unlike failed US GOP Presidential candidate Mitt Romney or UK CON Prime Minister David Cameron. Nevertheless, many Canadians are hurting and response to this crisis - like deforming OAS and Employment Insurance - deserve populist retorts.
But the two biggest Opposition Parties are both delivering this message and are competing against each other. In the case of the Liberals, it looks like the Trudeau candidacy has lead to some resurgence in their support at the expense of the NDP and not the CONs.
Take poll analyst Eric Grenier's projections:
The province appears to be going through (another) period of flux. If we look at the last 10 polls done in Quebec (stretching back to the end of August), we see that the NDP has averaged about 33.8% support. But in the 10 polls before that (stretching back to mid-June), the party averaged 39.5%. In contrast, the Liberals averaged 17.4% in the older polls but 22.4% in the newer ones. They appear to have gained about five points, almost all of it at the expense of the New Democrats. That should be worrying to Thomas Mulcair.
With these numbers, the Conservatives would likely win around 167 seats on the proposed boundaries of the 338-seat map. That puts them three short of an outright majority, but that margin is close enough that the Tories could easily pull it off.
The New Democrats win 82 seats and the Liberals win 50, while the Bloc takes 38 seats and the Greens keep their one.
That swing in Quebec is hugely important, as though the Bloc did not make any real gains they move ahead in many ridings simply because of the NDP's slip. A lot of them would be incredibly close, however, so the potential for a dozen or so seats to go back to the NDP is not out of the question. But that is somewhat besides the point - the Conservatives aren't at play in Quebec.
("NDP support drops in Abacus poll". Eric Grenier (Nov. 14, 2012). ThreeHundredEight.com)
|Seat Projections from Erin Grenier.|
Image Source: Erin Grenier's ThreeHundredEight.ca
The Trudeau candidacy is also bringing some women and seniors back into the Liberal tent, at the expense of the NDP. A Justin Trudeau-led Liberal Party may also have the potential to chip off young voters from the NDP and increase youth voter turnout. An energized youth vote, as the US found out, is a mighty force.
|Will Stephen Harper come out of a Dipper-Grit|
mad dash for votes with another term as Prime
Image Source: Adrian Wyld/Canadian Press
Posted on theSpec.
If things continue as they have, come election year this will be degenerating into a squabble between two powerful centre-left parties. Stephen Harper, his country club Conservative donors, and union busters across Canada will be quite pleased.
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