Monday, November 28, 2011

Dead Man Walking

Federal polls at this moment are mostly irrelevant, but this new Nanos offering is noteworthy on a couple fronts. First off, I have been of the mindset we Liberals are relegated to third place until well after the NDP leadership race, primarily because of a belief that contest would suck all the opposition oxygen, leaving us to fight for headline scraps. However, to date, this NDP leadership race has been pure VANILLA, early days, but so far nothing terribly compelling. Add in a dose of unexpected positive Liberal press- the Rae love in- and the dynamics have changed slightly(note the polling days mostly prior to Peter C. Newman digestion).

The numbers(last NANOS in brackets):
Conservatives 35.6% (37.7%)
Liberals 28.1% (23.4%)
NDP 27.3% (30%)
Greens 3.9% (3.8%)

An outside the margin of error move for the Liberals, as it appears they take votes from the NDP and Conservatives. The above rationale, as well as a negative flavour to the Conservatives heavy handed tactics in Ottawa, might explain the Liberals solid result. Decent coverage(Rae and renewal), a mostly invisible Official Opposition and Conservatives playing the Parliamentary bully game equates to a statistical move.

The regionals show the Liberals in first within vote rich Ontario:
Liberals 38.8% (30.5%)
Conservatives 37.2% (42.4%)
NDP 19.6% (22.5%)
Greens 3.8% (4.6%)

That is a clear shot in the arm result for the Liberals, suggesting there is still fertile ground, as well as hard to define tether to provincial standing. The McGuinty Liberals are alive and well in Ontario, so it does bleed some credibility as an option to the federal counterpart? Just a theory.

Nanos also find some evidence of Quebec erosion for the NDP, I only mention it because he is alone. Again, I'm a bit surprised to see the NDP faltering a bit, at least at this stage, but it is fair to say Turmel has been an utter non-factor and voters aren't sure where the party is headed. One BIG caution here, this NDP race WILL heat up, the battle will be joined and the debate should heighten exposure, so this could well be a temporary pause/pullback during a lull period.

In two years, when both the Liberals and NDP have new leaders, then the polls start to become instructive as to future possibilities. However, for a party desperate to remain in the conversation as a viable option, results like these tend to blunt the funeral processions, so they are not completely throw aways. This poll also demonstrates why I prefer MAYBES over the unequivocal proclamations of certain authors; that stuff bites you in the ASS every time, politics never sympathetic to absolutes, to fluid for theorems.


CuriosityCat said...

The NDP is starting to show the price of the incredible blundering of the party brass in not taking major steps to solidify Layton's breakthrough in Quebec. Not applying its national policy of asymmetrical federalism to its own leadership contest so as to remedy the almost total lack of any NDP infrastructure in Quebec is rightfully being interpreted in that province as a straw in the wind regarding the NDP's view of that province.

There will be more to come, as the leadership contest continues and the absence of a meaningful voice (through registered members) for Quebec in that contest continues.

I expect NDP support to drop a few points below 30% within six weeks.

Dame said...

C CAT is right about the NDP... and this is exactly what I did expected all along.. the bi ballon is about to burst..
Yes we can Liberals!!!!

CK said...

Regarding the NDP's future in Quebec, I'm not so sure. Much of it will depend on who the new leader will be. The other thing will depend on who the Bloc's new leader will be; that leadership race, under the radar for the most part. Probably a good thing.

I used to think with 100% certainty the Bloc will make a comeback, due to the Harper gov't's slamming of Quebec recently--shoving the monarchy down our throats, senior staffers who don't speak French, Bill c-10, lack of immediate response to the flooding in the Richelieu. Plus, over 70% Quebecers actually don't believe any gov't should be funding or bailing out the dying asbestos industry.

What changed my mind recently was an open letter to Gilles Duceppe from an obvious separatist in La Presse. She explained that she believed the Bloc was too much of a "pain killer", a "band-aid" and a "watchdog", making Quebecers complacent and lazy, basically (her words). She believed it was time to "pull the band-aid off" and vote for the NDP, federally, for that reason. She believed that Duceppe and the rest of the Bloc should come home and really work on sovereignty at the provincial level, instead, as it was useless to do so in Ottawa, in her mind. I have to wonder, how many other Francophones voted NDP for the same reason she did? I did often hear critics, including the founder of the Bloc, himself, Lucien Bouchard, accuse the Bloc of being too much of an "insurance policy". Keep Quebec 'protected', so as to, ironically, maintain federalism.

This would also explain Gilles Duceppe's popularity as of late, best.

If the Bloc can be saved, it will be under one man--a leadership candidate, Daniel Paille, whom Harper really doesn't like.

The NDP may well be dropping in popularity in la belle province, and will likely lose a few seats in the next election (if there is one). If the NDP lose, it will most likely be to a resurgence of the Bloc; not Liberals or Conservatives. And it will depend on the mood of sovereigntists. If by some miracle, pauline Marois leaves and Gilles Duceppe comes to replace her as head of PQ, the NDP will likely remain, for one reason: who else is there? If the sovereigntist parties, like the PQ remain fragmented and in trouble, I can see a resurgence of the Bloc, as that "insurance policy" will yet again, become a necessity.

sharonapple88 said...

One BIG caution here, this NDP race WILL heat up, the battle will be joined and the debate should heighten exposure, so this could well be a temporary pause/pullback during a lull period.

It could. Or it could bring out the infighting. Right now, they're tussling over the location of debates.

Steve V said...

Fair point, but I think the NDP are smart enough to come together at the end of the process. We'll see, Muclair is a real wildcard I suspect, not sure he's a team player necessarily, but the NDP membership seems pretty good at holding together.

sharonapple88 said...

We'll see, Muclair is a real wildcard I suspect, not sure he's a team player necessarily, but the NDP membership seems pretty good at holding together

That's because they're all Stepford Wives. ;) <--- Joke. Hey, there are times when the Libeal Party of Canada reminds me of Battle Royale.