Libs 37 (plus 7%)
Bloc 31 (minus 4%)
Cons 15 (minus 3%)
Those numbers are almost too good, in the sense that the Bloc will look to avoid an election (more on that dynamic later). Another poll that shows the Conservatives on life support, a real danger now of perceived irrelevance, all current seats in play.
The Liberals are now in a virtual tie for francophone support, which would have been a laughable want just a few months ago:
Bloc 37% (minus 4%)
Libs 34% (plus 7%)
Cons 13% (minus 4%)
I'll defer to those more intimate with Quebec seat distribution, but it's fair to say this movement with francophones puts many ridings into play for the Liberals.
On the best PM measure, Ignatieff enjoys a massive edge:
Quebec is a wasteland for Harper.
Right on cue, Gilles Duceppe is putting out signals that his party is ready to work with the government, much like the NDP pivot last week. We also hear talk that the Conservatives are going to do everything in their power to avoid a confidence vote prior to the 2010 Olympics. The strategy will also delay release of next year's budget, so that the government rule through the feel good Olympics. As far as that tidbit goes, with the economic situation, a general consensus that no rebound will really take hold until later in 2010, one has to think the Liberals can capitalize on any perceived budget delay for partisan advantage. That dynamic brings me to the new coalition of socialists, seperatists and sell out federalists.
From the Liberal perspective, if the other opposition parties want to make backroom deals with the government, prop up Harper, it puts us in a strong position. There does seem to be some strategic consideration in trying to force a fall election, the reasonings for the Liberals are obvious. However, it is a serious error for anyone to conclude that postponing any election "thwarts" the Liberal ambitions. The biggest danger for the Liberals moving forward, is a sense developing, wherein Canadians start to see the party as Conservative enablers, diminishing their stature, as well as arming the other parties. If the new dynamic gives the Liberals free reign to push an agenda, knowing full well the other parties are afraid of an election, it's hard to see how that hurts us in the polls. The key word here is "afraid", and that's exactly why the Bloc and NDP, as well as the Cons, are starting to play footsie under the table. No amount of spin detracts from a simple concept that denotes weakness. Liberals know the perils of perceived weakness, if others want to do the propping, one can think of a myriad of ways to be aggressive and capitalize on the wide berth.
In addition, time is the Liberals friend here, when you consider building organization, fundraising, candidates, etc. It's not like Liberals are DYING to have a vote, if one of the main concerns within the calculus is eliminated, I think people might be quite comfortable with watching others scurry while we build. I don't see how the Liberals fall considerably in the polls, especially when we will look a strong and aggressive opposition. If other parties are content to hide from the Liberal juggernaut, I am left with the clear impression that things have changed DRASTICALLY. Harper working with the Bloc, too delicious for words. The NDP propping up the government, tasty as well. Factor in the Liberal freedom as a results, works for me.