Friday, August 07, 2015

The Canadian Federal Election 2015

This is the first federal election that I can think of where the NDP actually has a chance of emerging with the most number of seats on election day. The latest tracker that I could find (CBC) put the party level with the Conservatives at 127 seats. (although the NDP is slighly ahead in the popular vote).The Liberals are trailing in third place with 93 seats.

However it is early days in a marathon campaign and in all likelihoo...d the percentages will most likely shift. Muclair is banking on his Quebec numbers holding firm and it looks as though the Bloc is failing to make inroads at the expense of the soft underbelly of his caucus. Muclair also seems to have made gains in BC and the Prairies.

Ontario will be shaped by the battleground fight between the Tories and the Grits. The attack ads seem to have put Trudeau on the defensive and he needs to start acting fast to prevent the bleeding of left of center votes to the NDP. Trudeau has some momentum in the Maritimes but no Canadian election is ever decided in this region of the country.

For Harper, what is needed is a change of strategy. Muclair's loose alliance of Westerners and Quebecers must be undercut. Having a party in government whose critical avenue of support comes from Quebec is always problematic (remember Mulroney - Meech Lake/Charlottetown etc) and Harper should focus on this. Canada can ill afford another constitutional crisis and the Tories would be well advised to push this point with the electorate.

This is going to be a very tough campaign for all three parties with the predictable mudslinging on all fronts. Right of center parties have a tendency to surge at the last moment (Look at Britain and Israel) so I am not panicking but my gut feeling at this stage is that we are heading back into the era of a minority government.

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