Monday, October 12, 2015

The Final Week of the Election

We are one week away from election day.  That means there are six more days where we will have to endure the endless blathering of all of the party leaders.

The polls seem to indicate that the Liberals have the momentum and that they could very well win the majority government that I predicted on August 2.  Of course, polls are not the best way to predict an election outcome as they are a snapshot in time and by the time they are published they are already out of date.  

To supplement what the polls are indicating it is always a good idea to see what the parties are doing.

For the Liberals it has been business as usual since the campaign has begun.  I do not believe anybody can objectively state that they have seen anything resembling discomfort in their campaign since it started.  They have stuck to their script and it seems to be paying dividends.  It is interesting that Mr. Trudeau actually had a campaign stop in Nepean today. That has been a Conservative stronghold since 2004.  Usually leaders do not waste their time in these ridings unless they believe that they might be able to swing it to their side.  

If the Liberal internal polls are indicating what we are beginning to see in the public polls no one should be too surprised if today's foray into a Conservative stronghold is only the first of such forays over the next six days.

The Conservatives on the other hand are beginning to look like a party that expects to lose. It is just little things.  Stephen Harper has changed tack a bit in recent days and stated that this election is not about him but it is about issues that Canadians find important.  What a silly statement from a man who has run three straight elections telling Canadians that those who would replace him are "Not a leader" or "Just visiting" or "Just not ready".  However, Mr. Harper is somewhat correct.  One of the most important issues of a large number of Canadians is to be rid of him as the leader of our government.  So, he is correct that this election is about issues important to Canadians, it is just that his removal seems to be one of those issues, perhaps the most important.

The other statement that Mr. Harper has made about polls not winning elections is clarion call of a political loser.  

Mr. Harper campaigned yesterday in the three Toronto ridings held by Conservatives yesterday. When, in the final days of an election campaign, a leader campaigns in a stronghold of political opponent if is because they believe it is ripe for a change in MP.  When a leader campaigns in one of their own strongholds it is for the same reasons.  

Finally, Mr. Harper has announced he will no longer be interviewed by the national media and it has been reported that he has stopped taking questions at his campaign stops.  He did the same thing in 2004 when he realized that we was going to lose.

The Conservatives are at a crossroads in the election.  Do they continue to fight to win or do they begin to save the furniture?  To slow the apparent momentum of the Liberals they will have to do something really desperate and history has demonstrated that such actions often just lead to more crushing defeats.  However, if they begin to focus on the places where they are the strongest they might be able to mitigate some of the damage they could face.  

The next week will reveal what they have decided.

For the NDP I would just point to Mr. Mulcair's statement that he is still running and expecting to win a majority government on October 19.  

That statement is an example of what I would consider to be an iron law in Canadian politics. 

"When a political party, which is shown to be in third place for an extended period of time in the public polls, states that they are still running to win a majority government they are actually admitting that they have no hope of achieving that goal."

There is still a week to go and anything could happen.  It would not surprise me one bit to see the Conservatives try to use the levers of government to change the momentum. George W. Bush used the Department of Homeland Security in the US, on several occasions, whenever John Kerry showed any signs of momentum so I would not put it past Mr. Harper to try something similar.  The question would be whether the RCMP and/or CSIS would be willing to play along.

Barring something like that Liberal supporters will be celebrating winning the election with a majority government on October 19.


Blogger marie said...

Great post ottlib.
The election has happened and we tossed Harpers party out hopefully for a lot of years. That party is too corrupt to be even thinking of regaining their power. I might be wrong but I have a lot of confidence for Justin Trudeau. Canadian's have voted in mass to rid the cons out of Parliament. A lot of his key players lost and that's a good thing.

keep up your posting. you are a refreshing blogger.

October 28, 2015 10:39 PM  

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