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Mired

This particular poll is part of the reason I believe the Liberals had no reason to fear going to an election:

Among decided Canadian voters, 33 percent say they would support the Conservative Party in an election, compared to 29 percent who would support the Liberal Party, 19 percent who would support the NDP and 11 percent who would support the Green Party. This marks a four-point decline in Conservative support since the previous Environics survey in June.

For all the talk of the Liberals and Dion’s misfortunes, Harper has failed to attract public opinion to himself or his party. With the Liberals leading in every region of this poll other then Quebec, there is nothing here to indicate a Harper majority, or even an increase in Conservative seats. I suppose one would argue that Quebec needs to be worked on, hence the reason for delaying going to an election, but I’m not sure waiting will do any good. I believe Dion has to appeal directly to the Quebec electorate in order to turn things around there. Nevertheless, I believe this poll and the one a few days ago from SC show why Harper didn’t put more poison pills in his Throne Speech – for all his bluster, he knows he hasn’t the numbers.

That brings me to another point.


The apparent Liberal strategy is to not bring the Conservatives down on a vague Throne Speech, but to do so on legislation at some future point. We now have Harper and company threatening that if the House doesn’t pass their “Tackling Violent Crime Bill” (Another thing: notice how they’ve exported another Republican technique of using loaded and pushed phrases on naming bills?), this will be a confidence measure.

Funny how that promise by the Conservatives to keep confidence measures limited to money and supply bills got thrown out the window eh? Anyhow, CalgaryGrit is arguing that this isn’t the bill to be taking the government down on. My counterpoint to that is, what exactly are we going to let through if we’re going to be fearful over causing a defeat? Are the Tories going to try and bring back those anti-terrorist provisions that the Liberals (and the rest of the House) voted down, declare it a confidence motion, and force us into changing our votes, or abstaining?

Not acceptable. I don’t want the Liberals turning into the northern version of the capitulation caucus otherwise known as the Congressional Democrats. The Liberals endured this bullying and bluffing for a year while they waited to pick a leader — are we going to allow unacceptable legislation pass thru merely because the “nervous nellies” in the Liberal caucus are scared of going to the polls?

6 comments to Mired

  • JOE BONNEVIE MONCTON NB

    SHOW DOWN AT THE NOT SO OK CORAL  BULLY HARPER, WITH HIS POLITICAL GUNS LOADED, IS CALLING THE NEW KID TO A SHOW DOWN. THE NEW KID (DION) DID NOT BRING HIS GUN BUT ONLY HIS LOYAL DOG, KOYOTO.  PERHAPS HARPER WILL SLIP ON SOMETHING THAT KOYOTO LEAVES ON THE GROUND AND MAYBE DION CAN SLIP AWAY, FOR ANOTHER DAY.  THE POLLS, ARE SOMETHING THAT DOGS DO SOMETHING TO. ALL DEPENDS, WHICH DOGS GO TO WHICH POLL AND WHO WATCHES. LETS GET IS ON, GET AN ELECTION AND TEACH THE POWER HUNGRY POLITICIANS SO WE CAN FIRE HARPER AND DION. THE NDP ARE LOOKING BETTER EACH DAY.  LOOKS LIKE DION KNOWS THAT HE WILL LOSE SEATS TO ALL PARTIES ESPECIALLY TO THE NDP, JUST LIKE IN QUEBEC, WHERE HARPER IS NOT POPULAR OR HIM SO NDP WILL GAIN. SO GETS YOUR BOOTS ON COWBOYS, THERE IS GOING TO BE A SHOW DOWN, JUST WATCH WHERE YOU STEP. LOTS OF POOH POOH OUT THERE.

  • I agree with ALW.  I’d definitely bet on the Liberals losing ground in an election anytime soon.  Nobody seems to like Dion as party leader, which makes the cited polls suspect in my mind.  When called by a pollster people probably reflexively answer based on their normal party affiliation, but when actually going to cast a ballot they would put more thought into it.  And honestly, when putting more thought into it there isn’t too much positive to see at this point.

  • ALW

    Hey, did I even mention I think you put way, way, way, way too much emphasis on polls?  That’s just by the by 🙂  But if you want to talk about polls you might discuss the one that puts Stephane Dion at 9 percent in terms of who’d make the best prime minister.  Which is basically the lowest of all time for any opposition leader, ever, nevermind a Liberal. 

    Surely you must concede that Harper versus Dion on the hustings makes even most Liberals wince, and for good reason.  Again, it’s not about policy.  Dion looks like a wimp, sounds like a wimp, and has shown no sign of improving over the last 10 months. 

    You discuss the Tories’ lack of room for growth a lot but you don’t provide any clue as to where on earth Liberal support is going to rise. So unless you’re hoping for Harper to do a mid-campaign faceplant – that was The Board’s hope during campaign 06 – I just can’t see where Liberal fortunes are going to improve. 

  • mushroom

    I would love to tack on a killer amendment in the crime bill that forces the Tories to vote for their own defeat.

    Such as the need to expand the distribution of prescription heroin in every urban centre.

    We can run on this issue with this slogan: Prisons don’t work, poverty is the root of crime.

  • Four points: one, the Conservatives have shown more potential for growth than the Liberals. The Conservatives numbers are up and down, while the Liberals have remained stuck at around 30 for almost 2 years.  Two, the Bloc vote looks like it is soft and while there are signs the Conservatives are positioned to pick up a Bloc voters outside of urban Montreal, there is no signs that the Liberals stand to pick up any of the Bloc vote if it indeed collapses.  Three, the Conservatives have more money and better ground presence than the Liberals.  Four, Conservative vote is more efficient than the Liberal vote.  Now, granted if you take away Alberta most polls would show the Liberals leading in the rest of the country.  However, what Liberal supporters forget if you take away Toronto, Conservatives are ahead in the rest of the country.  Moreover the Conservatives are competitive in virtually every promise now.   They were above 30% in every province except two.  In Quebec they were at 24.6% and in Nova Scotia they were at 29.69%.   By comparison, the Liberals were at 27.6% in BC, 15.3% in Alberta, 22.4% in Sask. 26% in Manitoba and 20.7% in Quebec.  In other words, in terms of population and in terms of the Provinces, in half the country the Liberals are well under 30%.  If Dion and company think they can win the next election without a major policy over hall, they are delusional.      

  • The majority of this Crime stuff has already passed through the house; the lone (i think) exception was the ‘three strikes’ rule, where criminals need to prove why after 3 violent crimes, they should not be designated violent criminals. While I suggest Dion could submit an amendment on this, the gov’t has said they’ll accept no further amendments.Is it worth going to the wall for? In the end, are you going to bite the pill for someone serving in jail, or hope that down the road after you’ve regained power you can correct anything that may be too draconian?This is a loser issue, especially as framed by the CONs. But they purposely framed it this way, as you noted. Gets the public riled, and neatly replaces yesterday’s headlines of ‘murders down in Canada’…Accept that there is a strategy and work together to end this gang’s turn in office, not just ending this minority gov’t’s term, is my advice.

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