NDP in the lead?

From the Daily News:


An opinion poll conducted on behalf of the New Democratic Party shows candidate Nathan Cullen in the lead as voters head to the polls on Monday. The poll shows the NDP’s Cullen with 34.5 per cent of the vote, Conservative incumbent Andy Burton with 30.9 per cent and Liberal Miles Richardson in third with 24.6 per cent.

Do you really trust a poll paid for by one of the candidates?

It’s very telling that the Liberals themselves have done extensive polling, and have not released any of the results.

This week’s Ipsos-reid poll (paid for by CTV) shows pretty much the same numbers for the riding, though not for BC in general. Yes, the NDP are leading in Skeena-Bulkley Valley, but in BC, it’s the Conservative Party. The Liberals are a distant third.

After the way the Liberal candidate spoke at the forum the other night, I’m not surprised they haven’t released any polling data. Not the best of speakers.

MiG’s prediction: Minority Government. I think that the left-center vote will be split this time (as it was in the last BC election).

The right isn’t split anymore (though they no longer have the center votes since a true PC supporter won’t vote for the Reform Party).

The split will be enough to make sure the Liberals don’t have an automatic majority by just winning Ontario and Quebec.

If the Liberals win more seats than the Reform Party, then they’ll form a minority government with the NDP. The NDP’s first demand will be a national debate and referendum on proportional representation. Everybody will win.

If the Reform Party wins more seats than the Liberals, they are in a bit of a bind. Who will be their coalition partners? The Bloc Quebecois? The Reform Party has already branded them as traitors to Canada. So a Reform Party minority government won’t last long.

Yes, it is interesting to note that the Bloc is actually a pretty leftist party, not a very good match for the Conservatives.

How exactly would proportional representation work? If Green gets 5% of the popular vote, does that mean they get 5% of the seats? And if so, how do you decide which 15 seats of the 308 they get?

The proportional representation system is used pretty much in every part of the free world (except North America).

One approach would be to keep the current ridings (or have them halved), and these would be elected in the same way they are now.

The other half of the seats would be given out proportionate to the popular vote received. Parties would have official candidate lists. For example, the Green party would have a list of 30 or 40 candidates. If they received 8 seats, then the first 8 names on the list would get a seat.

Proportional Representation systems bring government by consensus as opposed to government by steamroller.

And hoshq, seats don’t have to have a geographical location associated with them. A good example of this is the Senate.

Great explanation here:


(I’m pretty sure I posted that here on HTMF before)

While at first you’d think that this kind of system will take away from regional and local representation, the experience has been just the opposite. First, you can have local seats as well as proportional seats (blended system), or what happens in many countries is that you end up with regional parties (such as the Bloc Quebecois!) representing the individual regions.

Coalitions mean compromise and consensus. Bad governments never last in a system like this.

The last place I lived, the Northwest Territories, had a consensus government - a 17 seat legislature with no political parties. After elections the members would vote amongst themselves as to who would be premier and hold the cabinet positions.