Tag Archives: Hochelaga

All eyes on Michael Ignatieff after byelection results?

A few days ago the Globe and Mail ran an article with a CPC talking points title (here.) The article posited that the 4 bi-elections being held today were a test of Michael Ignatieff’s leadership. This is how the Conservative Party of Canada/Stephen Harper want to frame the byelection results.

Susan Delacourt points out in her blog that history is not on the Liberal Party’s side:

“In Cumberland-Colchester-Mosquodoboit Valley, Liberals came in third with 3,344 votes.

In Montmagny-L’Islet-Kamouraska-Riviere-du-Loup, Liberals came in third with 6,835 votes.

In Hochelaga, Liberals were second with 9,442 votes.

In New Westminster-Coquitlam, Liberals placed third with 5,615 votes.

All totalled, that’s a little over 25,000 votes. So perhaps that’s a benchmark for tonight; though turnout for by-elections is notoriously smaller than it is for general elections.”

I am constantly being reminded that, as a Liberal, I have messiah complex/sense of entitlement/believe that we are the “natural governing party.” Since 2006 when Stephen Harper became Prime Minister the media/conservatives have spent more time criticizing/scrutinizing the leader of the Liberal Party of Canada than they have holding the Prime Minister accountable for the multi-billion dollar deficit he created, the complete lack of environmental legislation from Stephen Harper’s government, the preventable isotope crisis his minister called “sexy,” the list goes on, and on.

How can the Globe and the Canadian Media publish articles over and over again that treat Michael Ignatieff as if he is Prime Minister and then act contemptuously when he or any Liberal talks of one day, in the future, muses about that becoming a reality?

The Equivocator’s Thoughts on the 4 byelections:

All four of the races are actually going to yield interesting results. I do cede that the Liberals should be preforming better as they are the official opposition but these races should be viewed as local races that do reflect, in a tiny way, what Canadians think of Stephen Harper’s government.

Nova Scotia – Cumberland-Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley:

This race is to replace Independent Bill Casey. It will be interesting to see how the many disaffected Conservatives in this riding vote. Most sources are calling this for the Conservatives. If they win I will say: “This was a Conservative riding for a long time, no surprise.”
If the NDP win I will say: “This was a referendum of Senator Mike Duffy and he lost.”

Quebec – Hochelaga:
The race for 2nd place is between the NDP and the Liberals.

Quebec – Montmagny–L’Islet–Kamouraska–Rivière-du-Loup
These people vote once every few months. There have been so many elections/bi-elections here over the last five years that voter fatigue is supposed to me high. The lower the voter turnout the some crazy/awesome the results. The grain of salt here is that everyone said the same thing in the Ontartio Provincial bi-election in St. Paul and the Liberals still won.

British Columbia – New Westminister-Coquitlam
Ken Lee, the Liberal candidate is actually the most qualified in this race but of course that doesn’t really matter. This was an NDP seat (they took 41.8% in the last election) but the 2008 race was a close NDP versus Conservative competition. The Liberals recieved 11.3% of the vote last time ’round.

University of Toronto political scientist Nelson Wiseman has called the four contests “unrepresentative” of the rest of the country and said Canadians should not read too much into today’s results. As an Ivory-tower Toronto-Liberal-Elitist I put a lot of stock in what a U of T professor says.

For better commentary/analysis check out:
Impolitical (here)
Threehundredeight (here)