NL Politics Pot-Pourri, Newfoundland Labrador elections

109 posts / 0 new
Last post
Caissa

If Saint John runs the same candidate in 2015, Rob Moir, we have a good chance of winning the seat.

Newfoundlander_...

I believe you think you understand Newfoundland and Labrador politics more then you actually do. Obviously the NDP is doing much better then they have ever done before, and it is because of "Jackmania" and the fact that the Liberal Party here is in complete disarray. 

What I am saying is that just because much of the NDPs success federally is in the St. John's Area doesn't necessarily mean it is provincially. The PC Party has always done very well in St. John's and much of the NDPs success federally was thanks to those Progressive Conservatives. Jack Harris' success is mainly because of who he is and not his party. Had he run for the Liberals in 2008 he would have likely got 70% of the vote as well, he has yet to face any real competition. The NDP have been stronger in St. John's West for a while now, and it's because of the NDP that weak candidate like Ryan Cleary was able to get elected. 

While I believe the NDP is stronger in the St. John's Area then elsewhere in the province, I do think that there support is more spread out than what you think it is. I, as well as many pundits, do not think that at under 30% the NDP are strong enough to make big gains in seats in St. John's, let alone sweep it.

I may be wrong about this, I thought St. John's East was there best chance for a seat pickup in the St. John's area but I have been told that the PC incumbent shouldn't have any trouble holding on to his seat.

Here's a list of 10 seats to watch.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/newfoundland-labrador/story/2011/09/21/nl-cochrane-10seatstowatch-nlvotes-921.html

Island Red

Newfoundlander_Labradorian wrote:

I believe you think you understand Newfoundland and Labrador politics more then you actually do. Obviously the NDP is doing much better then they have ever done before, and it is because of "Jackmania" and the fact that the Liberal Party here is in complete disarray. 

What I am saying is that just because much of the NDPs success federally is in the St. John's Area doesn't necessarily mean it is provincially. The PC Party has always done very well in St. John's and much of the NDPs success federally was thanks to those Progressive Conservatives. Jack Harris' success is mainly because of who he is and not his party. Had he run for the Liberals in 2008 he would have likely got 70% of the vote as well, he has yet to face any real competition. The NDP have been stronger in St. John's West for a while now, and it's because of the NDP that weak candidate like Ryan Cleary was able to get elected. 

While I believe the NDP is stronger in the St. John's Area then elsewhere in the province, I do think that there support is more spread out than what you think it is. I, as well as many pundits, do not think that at under 30% the NDP are strong enough to make big gains in seats in St. John's, let alone sweep it.

I may be wrong about this, I thought St. John's East was there best chance for a seat pickup in the St. John's area but I have been told that the PC incumbent shouldn't have any trouble holding on to his seat.

Here's a list of 10 seats to watch.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/newfoundland-labrador/story/2011/09/21/nl-cochrane-10seatstowatch-nlvotes-921.html

It's nice to see Tory talking points on exhibit: NDP success is not due to the NDP, but rather it's a result of accidents and happenstance.

On the federal side, the NDP had come close to winning St. John's South Mount Pearl three times (not to mention Greg Malone in 2000) before Cleary won. And to label Cleary as a weak candidate is manifestly ridiculous. As for St. John's East, the NDP had been solidly growing in strength for eight years before Harris ran.

Provincially, the Tories are in fact deeply afraid of losing St. John's East to the NDP, and for good reason. My Tory sources say St. John's East is toast for them. They are also at risk of losing St. John's Centre, St. John's North, and Cape St. Francis. Sure, the Tories can lose fifteen to twenty points in some districts and still eke out narrow wins. But in a post-Danny era and with the Liberals approaching "extinct" status in the Avalon region, the NDP is well-positionred to win several of these seats. Other seats to watch for the NDP are Burin-Placentia West, Labrador West, as well as - if the campaign goes well - Bonavista South and Lake Melville. The NDP team is highly energized and confidence is at an all time high.

Newfoundlander_...

I've been told by a media reporter, that has connections within all three parties, that the PCs are expected to not have any problems holding onto St. John's East, I was quite surprised by it but this person has always been right before.

St. John's Centre is held by one of the top cabinet ministers in a government with a high approval rating, the NDP have a strong candidate but it will be very hard to knock off an incumbent cabinet minister.

You only have to drive around Cape St. Francis to see that the incumbent will have no trouble being re-elected. PC signs on lawns outnumber NDP signs on lawns probably 5 to 1, at least. The NDP candidate, while being deputy mayor of Torbay, is not well known unlike the incumbent.

Stockholm

"Obviously the NDP is doing much better then they have ever done before, and it is because of "Jackmania" and the fact that the Liberal Party here is in complete disarray."

We can agree that the Liberals are in disarray - but I find it curious that people try to dismiss NDP votes as somehow not being "real votes" - but just based on Jack-mania. Well couldn't we just as easily say that no one in NL REALLY voted PC in the 2007 election - they just got swept up by "Danny-mania" and now that he's not on the ballot - the PCs cannot count on one single solitary vote that they got under Danny Millions!

We hear this all the time (esp. re: Quebec) people didn't REALLY vote NDP - sure they liked the leader the best, they liked the local candidate the best, they liked such and such a policy the best - but they didn't REALLY vote NDP for any valid reason. Of course we are left to assume that when people vote for the old line Tories and Grits - somehow those votes are more valid and that those votes "count" in a way that NDP votes don't. What about all those people who vote Tory in rural parts of Atlantic Canada not because they like Harper or like their candidate or like a single Tory policy - they just vote Tory because their grandpa told them that was the way the family voted. Do those peoples vote "count" any less?

Newfoundlander_...

They interviewed maybe 6 people on the news the other night two people said they were voting NDP because of Jack Layton. 

Stockholm

So what? If they interviewed 6 people in St. John's in the last election - I'll bet 6 out of 6 would say they were voting PC because of Danny Williams! That's politics.

newfenian

Stockholm wrote:

... I find it curious that people try to dismiss NDP votes as somehow not being "real votes" - but just based on Jack-mania. Well couldn't we just as easily say that no one in NL REALLY voted PC in the 2007 election - they just got swept up by "Danny-mania" and now that he's not on the ballot - the PCs cannot count on one single solitary vote that they got under Danny Millions!

Agreed. It is a bit rich to suggest that Jack Layton caused Ryan Cleary and/or Jack Harris to win (not policies, not ideology, not the NDP's newly popular brand, or the personal likability, campaigning and experience of either of these two pols), and then to suggest that Tom Osborne of all people is "loved", or that Shawn Skinner is a "popular cabinet minister". You can't have one and not the other.

I also agree that what's happening in Newfoundland and Labrador is not exceptional, and seems to be shaping up to be quite similar to what has been happening in Nova Scotia since the early to mid-1990s. There the NDP went from a small regional party with few seats to an urban party with a base in Halifax. It consolidated its base in its new constituencies and from there took official opposition and then government. We're seeing similar things start to happen in Newfoundland and Labrador. And of course you don't need to know the intricacies of local politics to know a rule of thumb in most democracies is that the centre-left does better in cities.

There's a larger story to be told here about social and economic changes on a more macro level in Atlantic Canada and the breakdown of patronage and the old electoral cleavages (eg. religion) and the modernization of the traditional party system.  This of course is a positive thing not just for the NDP but all parties and voters.

newfenian

Island Red wrote:

Other seats to watch for the NDP are Burin-Placentia West, Labrador West, as well as - if the campaign goes well - Bonavista South and Lake Melville. The NDP team is highly energized and confidence is at an all time high.

I'd like to hear more about the situation in that riding.

Newfoundlander_...

Stockholm wrote:

So what? If they interviewed 6 people in St. John's in the last election - I'll bet 6 out of 6 would say they were voting PC because of Danny Williams! That's politics.

Danny Williams was the leader of the PCs though, and would become premier if enough of his candidates got elected. Jack Layton isn't going to come back from grave and become leader of NDP and premier of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Stockholm

Yes but now that Danny Millions is gone how many of those people see Blunderdale as much of a stand-in???

Newfoundlander_...

64% according to the most recent poll. 

Newfoundlander_...
Newfoundlander_...

St. John's Centre and St. John's North seem to be the two districts in play for the NDP now. 

Island Red

Newfoundlander_Labradorian wrote:

St. John's Centre and St. John's North seem to be the two districts in play for the NDP now. 

These are only two among many that may go NDP on Oct. 11.

 

The story line for this election has has become highly unpredictable, due to the Liberal implosion, a power vacuum among the PCs, and a newly resurgent NDP. It's worth noting that Lorraine Michael performed strongly in the televised leaders debate this evening. While debates seldom change people's minds, they often reinforce existing trends - so the next two weeks promise to be interesting indeed.

Newfoundlander_...

Island Red wrote:

Newfoundlander_Labradorian wrote:

St. John's Centre and St. John's North seem to be the two districts in play for the NDP now. 

These are only two among many that may go NDP on Oct. 11.

 

The story line for this election has has become highly unpredictable, due to the Liberal implosion, a power vacuum among the PCs, and a newly resurgent NDP. It's worth noting that Lorraine Michael performed strongly in the televised leaders debate this evening. While debates seldom change people's minds, they often reinforce existing trends - so the next two weeks promise to be interesting indeed.

Which districts then? These are the ones that parties are saying are close races.

Island Red

Newfoundlander_Labradorian wrote:

These are the ones that parties are saying are close races.

I wish I had access to the same party "insiders" as Newfoundlander_Labradorian. If I did, then I'd REALLY know what's going on!

Newfoundlander_...

Too bad for you. Maybe you should volunteer and make connections. 

newfenian

At this point in a campaign, still two weeks away, I don't think even the luminaries behind the scenes truly have a handle on what's going to happen.

But one thing is certain: the Liberals have had a few screw ups in the last few days, and I would not be surprised if any polling agencies still covering the province this close to the election verify just that.

The Liberals' announcement that they would pursue the Muskrat Falls deal only along with the rest of the Lower Churchill, and negotiate it with Hydro Quebec instead of Emera, is going to hurt them even further in the polls, even in Labrador.

Danny Dumaresque's flippant remarks about St. John's is not going to help, and has probably done a great deal to sink any hope in hell that George Joyce had of making a come back, not that he had much hope of doing that any way.

Although I didn't watch the debate, the one thing that passes for consensus from all the reviews I've been reading about it was that Kevin Aylward came third. Actually, the consensus seems to be that no one 'won' the debate. But the blogosphere and twitter commentary seem to confirm that either or both of Dunderdale and Michael did passably and comparably well.

The Libs still do not have a full candidate slate. Apparently Mount Pearl North remains unfilled. That's interesting since Mount Pearl is touted to have been where Siobhan Coady got much of her support federally in SJS-MP in the previous three federal elections. Although that assertion is typically by Liberals themselves, and her support clearly was not very substantive or loyal or transferrable to the provincial scene.

Also, the party has 'show candidates' in a surprising number of districts. Many are party insiders and EAs who were thrown in as last minute installments to fill the slate. In fairness, some of the current PC MHAs got elected this way, and the NDP is also using placeholders in this election (Matt Fuchs in Burgeo--La Poile, par example).

How this will effect outcomes for the other two parties remains to be seen.

lil.Tommy

New Poll... thanks to the CBCvotes tweets

 

MQO Poll:

PC: 54 (+1)

NDP: 33 (+4)

LIB: 13(-5 ouch)

 

LEADER - KD: 62 LM 27 KA: 11

Who won debate? KD 36 LM 22. KA 6

Sample 464 +/-4.6%

 

That is nothing but a disaster for the Liberals, but without having regionals we have no idea how this is broken down.

 

nicky

Wow !!!

I always loved Newfoundland.

I think there is a longterm re-allignment of Canadian politics whereby the NDP is growing fast in regions where it was very weak  until recently like the Atlantic and Quebec and  at the same declining in former areas of strength like the prairies and rural BC.

It is astounding how many seats the NDP won the Broadbent area that it did not carry this year despite the record haul. I think the figure is about 30 seats out of about 50 seats that it carried in at least one of Broadbent's elections.

Howard

Stunning numbers. I hope they translate into some strong NDP MHAs on election day.

ETA: MILDLY concerning is that Michael's leadership numbers lag her party's numbers and Dunderdale's numbers exceed her party's numbers. This could indicate that the NDP vote is softer (which would make a lot of sense given how NEW it is). The poll puts the NDP at 33%, exactly what the party achieved federally over the last two elections. This raises another question, has the NL NDP topped out? Can it go and make inroads into PC support, a lot of which must go Liberal federally? Sounds like the Dunderdale + Harper tack is/has been a good place to start.

Aristotleded24

nicky wrote:
I think there is a longterm re-allignment of Canadian politics whereby the NDP is growing fast in regions where it was very weak  until recently like the Atlantic and Quebec and  at the same declining in former areas of strength like the prairies and rural BC.

I think even that overstates the case. The NDP are now polling in first place in BC federally and provincially. In Saskatchewan, the NDP is still at about 30% despite having a leader who reminds people why they threw out Lorne Calvert, and federally there are 3 seats the NDP narrowly lost, as opposed to 2 when Jack took over as leader.

Even in Alberta, left-wing support is starting to coalesce behind the NDP, and I believe the NDP has great potential in Alberta. The Alberta NDP did so well in the late 1980s that I'm comfortable suggesting they would have governed Alberta by now if they were not taken out by the Liberal resurgance of the mid-1990s.

newfenian

In 2003, the provincial election results by vote percentages were: PCs - 59%; Libs - 33%; NDP - 7%.

Those results are in the rough vicinity of today's poll results, with the Liberals and NDP switching places (PCs - 54%; NDP - 33%; Libs - 13%).

At the time, the Liberals got 12 seats out of 48 from one third of the vote.

Something to keep in mind.

Policywonk

Howard wrote:

Stunning numbers. I hope they translate into some strong NDP MHAs on election day.

ETA: MILDLY concerning is that Michael's leadership numbers lag her party's numbers and Dunderdale's numbers exceed her party's numbers. This could indicate that the NDP vote is softer (which would make a lot of sense given how NEW it is). The poll puts the NDP at 33%, exactly what the party achieved federally over the last two elections. This raises another question, has the NL NDP topped out? Can it go and make inroads into PC support, a lot of which must go Liberal federally? Sounds like the Dunderdale + Harper tack is/has been a good place to start.

Given the Conservative numbers, there may not be much of an increase in seats, if any, depending on concentrations. The Liberals look like they're on the verge of being wiped out, again depending on concentrations.

Policywonk

newfenian wrote:

In 2003, the provincial election results by vote percentages were: PCs - 59%; Libs - 33%; NDP - 7%.

Those results are in the rough vicinity of today's poll results, with the Liberals and NDP switching places (PCs - 54%; NDP - 33%; Libs - 13%).

At the time, the Liberals got 12 seats out of 48 from one third of the vote.

Something to keep in mind.

12 seats would be a nice increase, but I expect the NDP vote concentrations will be different than those of the Liberals in 2003. On the other hand, the Conservative vote was higher in 2003.

Newfoundlander_...
dacckon dacckon's picture
newfenian

Things are starting to look bad for the PCs in Burin-Placentia West.

And NDP candidate Julie Mitchell sounds ready to replace Clyde Jackman.

flight from kamakura

given the context, this is a really nice poll:  PC: 38 - NDP 23 - LP 9

http://thechronicleherald.ca/Canada/1266958.html

bekayne
flight from kamakura

from that last link:

Asked which party would be their second choice, 45 per cent of poll respondents said the NDP, while 18 per cent favoured the Liberals. The PCs polled 15 per cent as a second-place party.Mills expects, based on poll results, that the NDP will wind up in second place in terms of popular vote, but may not form the official Opposition.

"They are clearly tracking as the second-choice party," Mills said, adding the NDP has risen dramatically in the polls since the last election.

He noted a lot of people are indicating support for the NDP for the first time and could waver when they actually go to the polling booth.

 

Stockholm

I think that what people don't seem to want to acknoeledge in NL is that the NDP could easily become the official opposition even in the unlikely event that they don't gain a single seat and just re-elect Lorraine Michael. With the Liberals flirting with being in single digits - I think there is a good chance that the Liberals will get zero seats and one beats zero!

That being said - I am betting that the NDP ends up with about 6-8 seats.

Newfoundlander_...

The Liberals will win two seats, Yvonne Jones' district in Labrador and Burgeo La Poile where retiring incumbent Kelvin Parson's son is running. They still have the possibility of holding on to the Straits White Bay North but it's starting to look unlikely, it doesn't appear that they will be able to make gains elsewhere and will lose Port de Grave. 

According to the media the NDP's main targets in St. John's are SJ North and SJ Centre, like mentioned above. Besides that they are gunning for Burin Placentia West and Labrador West. So if they will all those as well as Lorraine's district they would have 5 seats.

The PCs are still well ahead of the NDP in St. John's according to the CRA poll, the NDP have 24% and the PCs have 46% while the Liberals are at 7%. So while St. John's North seems to be leaning more towards the NDP who knows what will happen with the PCs well in the lead in the region. The mayor of St. John's will also be campaigning with Minister Shawn Skinner in St. John's Centre, taking him out would be a big win for the NDP.

NorthReport
Stockholm

Newfoundlander_Labradorian wrote:

The PCs are still well ahead of the NDP in St. John's according to the CRA poll, the NDP have 24% and the PCs have 46% while the Liberals are at 7%.

 

Keep in mind that in the CRA poll they refer to St. John's/Avalon as the name of the region. Given that NDP support is probably very very low in the rural parts of the Avalon peninsula outside of St. John's - I suspect that the gap is a lot narrower in St. John's itself.

The NDP is apparently making major efforts in some other ridings not mentioned above such as Cape St. Francis where they are running the deputy mayor of Torbay, Bay of Islands near Corner Brook and Conception Bay South, plus all of the directional St. John's seats (ie: north, south, east, west, centre)

My sense is that people in NL know that it will be a Tory landslide no matter what - so they can afford the luxury of electing a solid opposition for once and the NDP is running a lot of exciting young dynamic candidates that are a million times more motivating than the kind of old-style Tammany Hall duds that people are used to seeing from the two old parties.

I preduct 39 PC, 8 NDP, 1 Liberal.

Island Red

I predict the following:

NDP (likely): Signal Hill-Quidi Vidi, Labrador West, Burin-Placentia West, St. John's North, St. John's, St. John's Centre, St. John's East

NDP (possible): Cape St. Francis, St. John's South, St. John's West, The Straits-White Bay-North, Lake Melville, Bay of Islands

The Liberals will likely retain Cartwright-L'anse aux Clair, possibly Burgeo-La Poile, and perhaps Port de Grave. On a good day they could take a couple of other seats, but this seems hard to believe given their cratering polling numbers and demonstrable ineptitude.

Stockholm

What about Conception Bay East - Bell Island?

Island Red

Stockholm wrote:

What about Conception Bay East - Bell Island?

Unfortunately, the NDP gave up without a fight for this seat. The nominations process - for this seat in particular - was carried out in a hurried manner and the successful candidate is not well known. Oh well, there'll be an election in another four years.

Robo

What about Darryl Johnson running in Bonavista South?   The PC incumbent has stepped down, and Johnson having 20 years experience on Port Union Town Council, eight of which were serving as Mayor, plus a long list of volunteer activities, makes him sound like being the right candidate in the right place at the right time. And, since the outgoing PC incumbent was the Speaker of the Legislature, I would guess that the degree of partisanship heard within the constituency while he was Speaker was probably lower than average -- again, a good fortunate circumstance for challengers from other parties.

NorthReport

Right.

Now of course the media woiuld never have rigged the news by only showing the interviews they wanted viewers to see.

Of course not.

How naive can one be.   LOL!!!  Laughing

 

Newfoundlander_Labradorian wrote:

They interviewed maybe 6 people on the news the other night two people said they were voting NDP because of Jack Layton. 

NorthReport

I suppose that one kind of flew by, eh!   LOL!

 

Newfoundlander_Labradorian wrote:

Too bad for you. Maybe you should volunteer and make connections. 

NorthReport

Are we still looking at a PC Majority - that's no good!

Pollster Derek Leebosh of Environics Research Group is predicting a political realignment in Newfoundland and Labrador.

“It's a miniature version of what happened at the federal level in May,” he said.

The Orange Crush surge of NDP support in the federal election that battered the Liberals and lifted the late Jack Layton to Opposition leader will likely be felt here, he said.

In the St. John's region, NDP MPs Jack Harris and Ryan Cleary won with impressive margins, Mr. Leebosh said.

“That's a huge number of people who have gotten into the habit of putting their X beside an NDP candidate. Granted, it was federal, but it does kind of predispose people to go the same way provincially.”

Provincial New Democrats could pick up seats on the northeast Avalon peninsula, which includes St. John's, if that support transfers to provincial candidates, Mr. Leebosh said.

The party has also focused efforts on ridings such as Labrador West, which has been New Democrat in the past, and Burin-Placentia West, where there is anger over Tory handling of the fishery and a major shipyard.

Mr. Leebosh believes the NDP is helped by the “disarray” of the Liberals led by Kevin Aylward, an 11th-hour replacement for Yvonne Jones, who stepped aside in August as she recovers from breast cancer.

“Basically, Lorraine Michael and the NDP are sort of filling that vacuum,” Mr. Leebosh said.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/provincial-elections/ndp-in...

 

 

newfenian

Robo wrote:

What about Darryl Johnson running in Bonavista South?   The PC incumbent has stepped down, and Johnson having 20 years experience on Port Union Town Council, eight of which were serving as Mayor, plus a long list of volunteer activities, makes him sound like being the right candidate in the right place at the right time. And, since the outgoing PC incumbent was the Speaker of the Legislature, I would guess that the degree of partisanship heard within the constituency while he was Speaker was probably lower than average -- again, a good fortunate circumstance for challengers from other parties.

Dig a little deeper into Roger Fitzgerald's performance as Speaker of the House of Assembly - it was embarrassing. He didn't even pretend to be impartial, and almost as bad, he didn't seem to know the basics of parliamentary protocol.  His partisanship was very much on display. But as far as these things go, it probably would not have effected his electability if he was still running. As someone who lived in the district of former Liberal Speaker Lloyd Snow, I can attest that few notice these things.

I doubt Darryl Johnson will win this district, although it was suggested in post #53 above that he could be in play. According to CRA & The Telegram Newfoundland's east coast (NE Coast, Burin & Bonavista Peninsulas, but not the Avalon) is the region in which the PCs are doing the best at 49% (and that is a percentage of all polled, including undecideds).

But then, both Burin Placentia West and Labrador West are both likely to buck the trends found in the regional polling data.

newfenian

Thanks NorthReport.

Another link from the Globe & Mail by Eric Grenier of threehundredeight.com. He makes an interesting point when he says:

Quote:
Polls differ on the situation in St. John’s. Environics found support in the city to be dead even between the two parties at 47 per cent apiece, while Corporate Research Associates gave the Tories the support of about 60 per cent of decided voters, with the New Democrats at about 31 per cent. If the race is as close as Environics predicts, the New Democrats could win as many as four seats in the city. If the gap is the kind that CRA suggests it is, the New Democrats are unlikely to win any new seats in St. John’s.

I can't find the regional data from the Environics poll, but as Stockholm pointed out above, the CRA polling data for St. John's actually includes the rest of the Avalon Peninsula, where the NDP is not yet a force and likely won't be in this election, such as the North West Avalon, the Southern Shore, St. Mary's Bay, etc.

The one riding on the Avalon outside of greater St. John's that I'll be watching on election night is Bellevue Beach, where they have a do-nothing PC backbencher and a Liberal who is running a vengeance campaign. She was fired from a volunteer position with the  rural secretariat of the provincial government over this ridiculous incident. The NDP candidate seems like the only person who seriously wants the job of MHA.

If the Environics data is for St. John's only, that's great news. Although Grenier doesn't tell us what Environics found in terms of the regional breakdown of the undecided voters.

Howard

I'll take Derek Leebosh's read over Eric Grenier's anyday.

ghoris

Tory blowout so far. NDP and Liberals, as expected, duking it out for second. NDP leading Libs in the popular vote 25 to 17, and 4 to 2 in the seat count. Still very early, but the NDP is leading in Burin-Placentia West, Lake Melville, The Straits-White Bay North and Bonavista South.

Policywonk

Early results coming in;

27, 7, 2

All leading, no-one declared elected, but it looks like the NDP will displace the Liberals as Official Opposition.

 

ghoris

Again, early days, but the NDP seems to be making some inroads in St. John's so far, leading in Cape St. Francis, St. John's Centre, St. John's East, St. John's North, and Signal Hill-Quidi Vidi.

Labrador West is the only seat not yet reporting.

Policywonk

Lorraine Michael declared elected, NDP still leading in 5 but Liberals are leading in 4.

Pages

Topic locked