Unless there are significant changes, Harper will get his majority next election

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NorthReport
Unless there are significant changes, Harper will get his majority next election

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NorthReport

This is pathetic.
By the time the Liberals get around to electing Justin Trudeau as their new leader, as opposed to their continuous obsession with coronating aristocracy, the Liberals might well be a 4th place party.

 

Ignatieff's big problem

And no amount of aggressive staff work can cover confusion at the centre. After all these months, Ignatieff remains an enigma -- either undecided on key issues, absent, or a conservative trapped in the wrong party.

He once championed a carbon tax and now extols the tar sands. Like Harper, he supports the seal hunt (or did in Britain). In New Brunswick, recently, he endorsed an expansion of nuclear power, an issue by no means settled among Liberals and anathema to environmentalists. At the same time -- again, without conspicuous consultation -- he ended Liberal support for Quebec's small asbestos industry.

He has also promised restored funding for the CBC, public subsidy for the Digby-Saint John ferry and mused about an east-west power grid -- but much of what he says sounds improvised. Meanwhile, he hasn't bothered to defend his proposal to offer jobless benefits after nine weeks of work -- while Tories merrily portray this as a gift to shirkers.

Ignatieff is unusually self-aware, also observant, ambitious and bright. But if he is going to provoke an election this fall, and have any hope of winning, he needs to improve his game -- not just his staff.

 

http://www.ottawacitizen.com/columnists/Ignatieff+problem/1937471/story....

NorthReport

Once tagged with the "loser" image in politics, it becomes an uphill battle to ever shake it.

Loser Ignatieff - LI - how do you pronounce that.

No rain fell on PM's summer parade

Harper lost two of his senior communications staffers this summer and rarely have so few filters seemed to stand between his message and the public.

On that score, his trip to the North last week was a public relations success. The photo opportunities alone had to be a dream come true for the Conservative image-makers, who are currently crafting the party's election ads.

As a bonus, while Harper basked in the spotlight, many commentators were sharpening their claws on the visibility-challenged Ignatieff - deemed by most as the political loser of the summer season.

 

http://thechronicleherald.ca/Opinion/1139492.html

KenS

Your thread title has nothing to do with the story, nor did you connect the two.

"Harper is going to get a majority this time" has being a sky is falling reprise on Babble so many times.

Generally I ignore it now. But putting it in a thread title makes it more aggravating- let alone one when there is no connection to the content. It's just a statement, not an argument.

I guess, implicitly, the argument must be that if the Liberals keep being useless Harper will get a majority.

Well, the NDP and the Bloc have a role, and a responsibility in whether that eventuality comes to pass... and you of all people should know that and act accordingly.

There's a certain point when the "Liberals are utterly useless line" tips into treating them as if they really are the only solution to our problems.

 

Stockholm

Sorry to be picky about grammar, but this is a pet peeve of mine:

"By the time the Liberals get around to electing Justin Trudeau as their new leader, as opposed to their continuous obsession with coronating aristocracy, the Liberals might well be a 4th place party."

There is no such verb as "to coronate". The verb is "to crown" and the event is called a "coronation"!</p><p>Now back to regularly scheduled programming.

Caissa

Endorsing nuclear power in Saint John is designed to win back the saint John seat that Zed lost to the Tories in the last election.

madmax

Stockholm wrote:
Sorry to be picky about grammar, but this is a pet peeve of mine:

Don't  read ever any of my posts, i'd hate to see you had a heart attack,Surprised

remind remind's picture

Oh well, NorthReport, perhaps those voting Liberal and Con in ON and QC will finally stop being stuck on stupid if Harper gets a majority and further destroys the country.

Moreover, he does not need majority he is doing exactly what he wants already with the Liberals fully complicit.

anchovy breather

At the same time -- again, without conspicuous consultation -- he ended Liberal support for Quebec's small asbestos industry.

---------------------------------------------------------

 

I thought his position on asbsetos was far from settled. One day calling for a ban, the next saying he mispoke.

 

Ineffable Iggy.

 

Uncle John

Calling people who choose to vote for a political party stupid is the best way to keep them doing so.

madmax

Agreed.

Debater

KenS wrote:

Your thread title has nothing to do with the story, nor did you connect the two.

"Harper is going to get a majority this time" has being a sky is falling reprise on Babble so many times.

Generally I ignore it now. But putting it in a thread title makes it more aggravating- let alone one when there is no connection to the content. It's just a statement, not an argument.

I guess, implicitly, the argument must be that if the Liberals keep being useless Harper will get a majority.

Well, the NDP and the Bloc have a role, and a responsibility in whether that eventuality comes to pass... and you of all people should know that and act accordingly.

There's a certain point when the "Liberals are utterly useless line" tips into treating them as if they really are the only solution to our problems.

 

I'm happy to say for a change that I think you are the most objective voice on this thread, Ken. Smile

NR's comments and speculations are so shaky and biased that I'm not even sure what to say in response.  He seems to have just started a thread for the sole purpose of claiming that Harper is on his way to a majority with no evidence to back it up so that he can say that the Liberals are in such bad shape that they may soon finish 4th!

Interesting that on the polling thread where those such as I, Stockholm and Chantal Hebert were actually dealing in real numbers and trends in Quebec that it was called complete fiction, and yet here he is making up wild predictions out of thin air.  Oh well, I guess it floats his boat.

Incidentally, the newest poll is the 2nd one this week that shows the Liberals tied with the BQ in Quebec.

KenS

If one took the way you use "objective" and inserted the neutral term "even handed, "  it would always make sense. I can't be the only one who finds your appropriation of the term aggravating.

remind remind's picture

Frankly, I want ya'll to keep voting Con and Liberal.

mybabble

Am I missing something when did Harper get his majority as Harper has a mininority government and not a chance in H_LL he is getting a majority.  The very least Harper's going to get is a run for his leadership and its long overdue as the pompous leader is getting ready for his fall.  Hail are great leader or is it off to the land of unemployment for the premier as 50 billions in debt while Canadians struggle with EI.  All the while loading up the rich with tax incentives that are going to cost Canadians dearly as he Harper forces taxes on  provinces looking for handouts, an't no winner to me.   Who is Harper's new communication specialist, nobody special as who is he backing well lower taxes for Big Business leaves little surprises for struggling tax payers.

NorthReport

When I dislike what somebody represents, it can often be a challenge to ensure that my personal biases don't cloud my judgement. Not being a fan of the Cons, it doesn't bring me any joy to see Harper succeed with his strategies. 
---------------
Harper plays a mean game of 'heresthetics'

Appointment of Doer can be seen as part of strategy to divide opponents for political gain, says Flanagan, former chief of staff to the Prime Minister

Quote:
 

The timing, however, couldn't be more perfect for the Tories - after controversial Senate appointments and just before the Liberals' summer caucus in Sudbury.

Meanwhile, Mr. Flanagan said that heresthetic, or the political art of division, in part involves destabilizing the opposition through the appointments process, such as picking somebody from the opposition side who is willing to work with you at least in a certain forum and promoting him. In that, Mr. Harper found Mr. Doer.

"Harper kind of specializes in trying to split the opposition," said Mr. Flanagan, who said the Prime Minister has an "intuitive flair" for heresthetics. "That is one of his specialties, and he has done it several times and in different ways."

He pointed to the naming of former Chrétien deputy prime minister John Manley in 2007 to head the high-profile independent panel on Canada's future role in Afghanistan as another example of Mr. Harper's adroitness.

In the Manley appointment, the Harper government was able to avoid criticism by the Liberals that the Prime Minister was trying to dictate and control the war.

And in terms of "raw politics," Mr. Flanagan said the Doer move splits the NDP.

On one hand, he said, there is the federal NDP and Mr. Layton, with his "vociferous opposition" bragging that he has voted to overthrow the Harper Conservative government on every single non-confidence motion.

"Then suddenly, here is the most successful NDP provincial premier since Roy Romanow taking a Harper appointment. So that tends to undercut Layton's position," Mr. Flanagan said. "What the practical consequences will be I can't say. But certainly I think it's a good manoeuvre in that respect."

So do others. A senior Tory strategist said that the appointment sets up the discussion for the weekend of a "great appointment," making the "Senate critique less relevant."

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/harper-plays-a-mean-game-of...

Debater

KenS wrote:

If one took the way you use "objective" and inserted the neutral term "even handed, "  it would always make sense. I can't be the only one who finds your appropriation of the term aggravating.

 

Ken, don't spoil this moment of me complimenting your good post.  Wink

David Young

A Harper majority next election?  I doubt it.

The Conservatives are poised to lose up to 6 of the seats they presently have in Atlantic Canada, another 6+ in Quebec, and at least 6 more in the west & B.C.

Since they are 10 seats short of a majority at present, that means they would have to pick up around 30 seats elsewhere.

Newfoundland/Labrador?  Maybe 1 or 2.

B.C.?  Perhaps 2 or 3.

Ontario?  Where are the 25 seats they'd need for a majority?

Only a complete and utter collapse of Liberal support towards the Cons would see them get a majority, and they're consistantly running neck-and-neck all summer long.

Conservative majority in the next election?

I doubt it.

Wait for the results in the Cumberland-Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley by-election.

That will be the best indicator of what may happen in the next election.

Stay tuned!

 

Debater

I'm not sure if the Conservatives can win any seats in Newfoundland/Labrador in the next election.  I think they may be shut out again.  It's going to take a while to rebuild.  I think the only competitive seat in that province may be Sioban Cody's seat where there was a close Liberal/NDP race last year.

Erik Redburn

This standard Liberal line won't work for the NDP, being the perrenial third place party outside of Quebec.  But a Harper majority is unlikley now anyhow, according to almost all the polls including those from Quebec. 

nicky

Some of you are forgetting how close Harper came to getting a majority last time. He only missed it by a dozen seats. A swing of 2 or 3 percent will do it.

In the last week of the campaign, the Greens went from 11-12% down to 6.8. Had they maintained the higher figure it is doubtful that the Conservatives would have been held to a minority. That crucial 4-5 % drifted back to the Liberals and NDP and made the difference.

Some polls now ominously put the Grenns back in double digits. It they can maintain that Harper will be laughing.

remind remind's picture

Are you suggesting that the Green Party is fulfilling their purpose of allowing Harper to win a majority?

Because all the rhetoric of May's hating Harper is just a smoke screen, IMV too.

Let's look at her intereference in the coalition for example, last winter, she managed to trivialize and marginalize people's opinion of it, by her out of fucking no where comment of wanting a senate seat.

She runs in Central Nova for no damn reason, and now SGI.

West Coast Lefty

A Harper majority is not very likely - I'd put the odds at 15-20% at best, in large part due to Harper's huge negatives in Quebec, the Liberal lock on the GTA, and the NDP's holding enough support in even the bad polls to predict 25-30 seats for Jack at minimum. 

It is possible though.  Iggy is screwing up big time now when it should be easy for him, we have no idea how he will perform during the general election campaign, leaders' debates, etc.  Marois is in free-fall as PQ leader and the disarray in the PQ could translate into BQ voters staying at home in the next federal election.  If Harper keeps making shrewd moves like the Doer appointment, Iggy continues to stand for nothing and prop up the government, the economy makes a solid recovery in 2010, and Iggy brings down the government on a less-than-compelling issue...a Harper majority could happen.  There are a lot of "ifs" in that last sentence, though.

NorthReport

Harper, regardless of whether or not he is liked or supported here, is seriously outmanouvering the official opposition. And this appointmernt of Doer is a perfect example. Harper must be really laughing at the official opposition. While some folks are discussing the possibility of Doer running federally, Harper is decisively and effectively neutralizing Doer with this US ambassador appoinment. The recent Senate appointments are another case in point.. There is a pattern here, and it has been going on, pretty much since Harper became prime minister. Unless the official opposition gets its act together, we may soon be facing a Harper majority government.

Stockholm

I think a more likely scenario is that once parliament is back in session, the Tories will be back on the defensive and they will have to deal with the inevitable jobless recovery that looms - if we have a recovery at all. If the government doesn't fall in the fall - then there will have to be budget in the spring and it may be an ugly one unless the Tories want to campaign on a trillion dollar deficit. IF BQ voters stay home in Quebec, its actually BAD for the Tories because it would tend to hand seats to the Liberals - since they are going to be a lot more competitive in more seats in Quebec than is the Tories can hope to be. More Liberal seats and fewer BQ seats in Quebec is bad news for Harper since it further narrows the gap with the Liberals.

I don't know if I'd go so far as to say that Iggy is "screwing up". He simply isn't present at all. But Canadian political history is full of the wreckage of politicians who won the summer and then lost the Fall. Its hard to see how Iggy could be WORSE than Dion as a politician.

West Coast Lefty

The session will be tough for the Conservatives, I grant you that.  But what will the Lib critique be? Their first big move will be to support the government for the 80th time on a confidence vote.  Will Iggy call for more spending and thus a higher deficit (and preclude any Liberal critique of the Flaherty deficits being too high) or call for lower deficits and thus either higher taxes or spending cuts, both of which would be massively unpopular with voters and would put the Libs to the right of the Conservatives? When you have a nominally right-wing party implementing huge stimulus programs and high deficits, it leaves the centre-left opposition in a box, and Iggy has walked right into that box.

You see this dilemma in the Saturday Globe lead story (don't have time to link to it) about how the Libs won't bring down the government over EI.  There is a quote from Marlene Jennings, MP (Lib-NDG-Lachine) where she says how the Libs are about much more than EI, there is the West Coast Salmon fishery, HINI concerns, the isotope crisis, infrastructure funding, etc.  The problem is, those aren't issues - they are headlines.  There is no magic Lib solution to restore the West Coast fishery, cure HINI instantly, repair Chalk River nuclear plant in 2 weeks, etc.  Those are all long-term structural problems and they don't lend themselves to scoring partisan points. Harper will get lots of negative press (as he has largely had all summer long) but I don't see it benefiting the Libs until and unless Iggy can take a clear stand on key issues and differentiate himself from Harper on policy.

Stockholm

"When you have a nominally right-wing party implementing huge stimulus programs and high deficits, it leaves the centre-left opposition in a box"

Tell that to Roy Romanow who crushed the Tories in Saskatchewan after they bled red ink all over the place. Or tell that to Jean Chretien who demolished the federal Tories after the ran up gigantic deficits....anyways, if the current political situation puts the Liberals in a box then it should open up possibilities for the NDP. I wonder whether in BC we can get some mileage federally by saying that the only way to register a protest against the HST is the vote NDP federally. A Liberal is a Liberal is a Liberal and the federal Tories are the ones who pushed for the HST in the first place.

West Coast Lefty

Yes, Stockholm, your analysis is dead-on if we were in 1991 or 1993, respectively Undecided In 2009, the context is somewhat different, wouldn't you agree? Everybody from Obama to George Bush in the US to Stelmach, Harper, Campbell and McGuinty (and the NDP in Manitoba and NS will have no choice but to follow suit) is getting on the Keynesian bandwagon of stimulus spending and deficits to face the biggest economic crisis since the 1930s.  The Herbert Hoover/W.B. Bennett "balanced budget every year no matter what" lunacy will hopefully never be heard from again.  You simply can't govern that way without gutting public services or massively raising taxes - balancing the budget over the business cycle and keeping the debt-to-GDP ratio manageable is the rational way to approach fiscal responsibility. 

You are correct that this is a huge opportunity for the federal NDP to present a clear alternative to the two old-line parties - hopefully based on a green economic stimulus as Obama has done to move towards a clean energy economy - saving $$ for consumers, reducing emissions and creating local jobs that can't be outsourced.  That's the real "hope" message Jack should be presenting, not bashing credit card fees and protesting "high" gas prices (which will go way higher in the next few years regardless of who is in power). 

The HST is the wrong issue for Carole and Jack - as Carole should have learned from the "ax the tax" debacle, for the NDP to run on an anti-tax message is not a vote winner - the 2009 BC results were virtually identical to 2005 and turnout was even lower.  Chretien famously broke his GST promise after 1993 and won 2 straight majorities after doing that, McGuinty broke his brain-dead "no new taxes" pledge after 2003 and got re-elected, and it will be the same story with Campbell in 2013 unless Carole finds a different strategy.  People hate new taxes before they are introduced and then accept and forget once they are in place, as happened with Gordo's carbon tax and as will happen with the HST.  I hate the HST as a policy but it's not the issue Carole can win on in 2013.  Jack will have a hard time with the HST as an issue if the Manitoba NDP government adopts it, which I predict will happen within a year.

 

mmphosis

NorthReport wrote:

This is pathetic.
By the time the Liberals get around to electing Justin Trudeau as their new leader, as opposed to their continuous obsession with coronating aristocracy, the Liberals might well be a 4th place party.

Mayhaps the NDP invites Justin Trudeau to become the leader of the NDP.

Stockholm

Opposition to the HST in BC is not about winning the 2013 election. It will be ancient history by then. The point is to inflict maximum damage on Campbell now and to demoralize his party etc... sort of like how within months of the NDP being re-elected in 1996, their popularity took a nosedive that they never really recovered from. Similarly, in 1993 people wanted to punish the Tories for the GST. It didn't matter whether the Liberals axed it or not - people just wanted to punish the Tories.

Campbell and the BC Liberals could have been enjoying their honeymoon right now while the NDP was in disarray. Instead, thery are on the run and divided and the opposition to Campbell has been emboldened. 

Centrist

Stockholm wrote:
I wonder whether in BC we can get some mileage federally by saying that the only way to register a protest against the HST is the vote NDP federally. A Liberal is a Liberal is a Liberal and the federal Tories are the ones who pushed for the HST in the first place.

Using that analogy, then we should get even better mileage out of the HST in Ontario and not only keep our current seat base but make some considerable gains as well! 

 

Stockholm

That's true, but for some reason the HST seems to be creating a much bigger backlash in BC than it is in Ontario.

St. Paul's Prog...

I think Harper had his chance and missed it.  At this point, they could actually be wiped out in Quebec and as bad as Iggy may be, I don't see him doing worse than Dion.  Dion campaigned (unsuccesfully) as a left-Liberal, Iggy is a blue Liberal who will probably be more successful in appealing to centre-right voters.

MUN Prof. MUN Prof.'s picture

Unless Quebec successfully tags out of the federation before the next election, party status for the Greens is a more likely outcome than a Harper majority.

Debater

St. Paul's Progressive wrote:

I think Harper had his chance and missed it.  At this point, they could actually be wiped out in Quebec and as bad as Iggy may be, I don't see him doing worse than Dion.  Dion campaigned (unsuccesfully) as a left-Liberal, Iggy is a blue Liberal who will probably be more successful in appealing to centre-right voters.

I don't think the Conservatives will be totally wiped out in Quebec since their collapse seems to have leveled off and there are still some Conservatives in QC, but yes they have big problems there.  

One problem is of course the small seat count they have and their limited opportunities for growth, and the second problem they have is that while it is not an exact science and does not happen in every election, in most Canadian elections, the top federalist party in Quebec is usually the one that forms the government.  That party is the Liberals right now.  Not a good bellwether for Harper.

Stockholm

The Liberals were also the top federalist party in Quebec in 2008 - they had 23% of the vote and 13 seats while the Tories had 22% of the vote and 10 seats.

Debater

As I said above, it is not an exact science and does not happen in every election.

However, the 2008 election is one of those elections where it is hard to determine which federalist party won in Quebec - the Liberals finished slightly ahead of the Conservatives in seat count and popular vote yes, but not in Francophone Quebec.  The Conservatives beat the Liberals in the Francophone vote.

Btw, the Liberals won 14 seats (the re-count in Brossard-La Prairie).

melovesproles

I think Iggy will be a complete flop, he has no appeal for the center left who fled under Martin and although its a very low bar, he frankly doesn't have the charisma that Harper does.  Harper reminds me of rightwingers who I know and argue with over a beer, Iggy is just a pretentious weasel who has spent his career peddling imperialist bullshit in elite academies.  I'm not a fan of either but the former has a much broader appeal with your average voter. 

The NDP are watering themselves down to the point that their appeal in the West is going to shrink and that will help Harper too.  Combined with the fact all the party leaders are uninspiring I think it isn't impossible Harper pulls out a good result simply by being the most competent party leader in a very weak crop. 

 

flight from kamakura

hm, interesting conversation.  though i don't really see how being tied in the polls with the liberals leads to a majority government.

George Victor

Take a couple more drags and see if enlightenment comes.

Doug

The Conservatives aren't likely to win a majority but it's hard to say that the situation the Liberals are in has changed enough to change the result of an election this time. Have a peek at this paper from the Canadian Election Study about why the Liberals lost the last election - it's unlikely that all of the factors involved that the authors list have changed a lot since.

 

Anatomy of a Liberal Defeat

janfromthebruce

Thanks Doug for putting it up: Interesting findings:

Findings
Social Background Characteristics: The Shrinking Liberal Core
The Liberals were able to coast to victory in 2000 with the support of two key groups:
visible minorities and Catholics. By 2008, the Liberals could no longer count on their loyalty.
The visible minority vote dropped 14 points between 2000 and 2004 (see Figure 2).3 The main
beneficiary was the NDP. The Liberals did not lose any further ground in 2006, but in 2008, they
lost a massive 19 points. And now it was the Conservatives who benefited. In fact, minority
voters were almost as likely to vote Conservative in 2008 as they were to vote Liberal.

Now this is interesting but I wonder about the shrinking base of "catholic" and attachment to "catholic". Are they "practicing catholics or just identify but really no association with the institution? Remember attendance and involvement with the catholic church and schools is dramatically decreasing.

"The Catholic vote tells a similar story (see Figure 3). Catholic support has dropped a
massive 24 points since 2000. In 2006, Catholics were as likely to vote Conservative as Liberal.
In 2008, they clearly actually preferred the Conservatives to the Liberals. Controlling for other
social background characteristics reveals that the drop in Liberal support among Catholics is
even more dramatic than the loss of visible minority votes. According to our estimations, in 2000
the probability of voting Liberal was 15 points higher among Catholics than among non-
Catholics; by 2008, it was only five points higher."

Class:

"In both 2000 and 2004, voters from households with at least
one union member were as likely (or not) to vote Liberal as those from non-union households.
Since then, the party has seen its union vote cut in half. The big beneficiary has been the NDP,
which has seen its share of the union vote double, but the Conservatives have also been attracting
more votes from union households. In 2008, lack of appeal to these voters cost the Liberals over
two points."

Issues:

"Fortunately, for the
Liberals, they were able to benefit from the votes of people who supported the decision not to
send troops to Iraq and who favoured increased spending on health and social housing and
opposed private hospitals.
Were it not for the issue of health spending, the Liberal vote share
would have been four points lower. Meanwhile, the Iraq issue netted the Liberals over two
points."

I highlighted these because with Iggy being pro - Iraq and now courting the right-wing vote - NDP party needs to go hard here. Iggy is a war monger and can't be trusted - he kept us in Afghanistan - he's emperialist (I disgress but it's important election strategy.

So I will post more as I read along.

 

janfromthebruce

I am focussing on liberal weaknesses and where the NDP has strength. If others want to point out other parties' weaknesses and strengths go ahead. I take note that one weakness for the NDP is getting back the environmental vote of potential non-partisan voters who went from liberal to green.

By the time of the 2008 election, the picture had changed dramatically (see Figure
5). In 2004, for example, the Liberals had a decisive advantage on health care. In 2008, voters
were more likely to name the NDP or the Conservatives as the best party for improving health
care. And the Conservatives had the advantage when it came to dealing with the economy,
creating jobs and fighting crime. In fact, there was not one single issue on which the Liberals
ranked first and that included protecting the environment where the Liberals lagged far behind
the Greens.

Leadership

"Meanwhile, both Stephen Harper and Jack Layton saw their mean ratings
rise, making them exceptions to the so-called “fallen heroes” phenomenon whereby a leader’s
popularity drops with each successive election."

Outcomes

"The party began to lose its head start in 2004 and its core of
loyal partisans has continued to shrink. Catholics and minority voters have been the twin pillars
of Liberal dominance, but their support is clearly crumbling. The Liberals’ failure to own a single
major issue in 2008 underlines just how serious the party’s situation has become."

Libs need to rebuild their partisan base. NDP need to score on economic and managers, and expand their base.