Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Federal byelection has good signs for Conservatives and Liberals, but not NDP

Byelections rarely hold any wider political significance — one held in the reliably Conservative stronghold of southern Alberta doubly so. But Monday night's results in the Medicine Hat–Cardston–Warner federal byelection do provide some signals as to the states of the federal parties: resilience for the Conservatives, popularity for the Liberals, and deep malaise for the NDP.

The byelection, called to replace a vacancy following the death of Conservative MP Jim Hillyer earlier this year, was easily won by the incumbent party. And the Conservatives rightly deserve recognition for their creditable win.

You can read the rest of this article here.

Polls favourable to Donald Trump may be overestimating his support, state polls suggest

Depending on which presidential candidate you favour, American polls have something to appeal to all tastes. A competitive race? A narrow lead for Donald Trump? A landslide for Hillary Clinton? The polls have you covered.

But that doesn't mean that we have no idea where things really stand in the U.S. election. The consensus of national polling still points to a comfortable Clinton lead — and that lead is corroborated by state-level polling that also heavily favours her.

You can read the rest of this article here.

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Polling associations look to increase transparency with merger, but not everyone is on board

Two organizations representing market research firms and pollsters in Canada have announced they are entering into merger talks to speak on behalf of the public opinion polling industry with one voice and apply a uniform set of standards for their members.

But at least one prominent polling firm has concerns that some aspects of those standards could undermine the level playing field in the industry.

You can read the rest of this article here.

Friday, October 21, 2016

The Pollcast: Has the Liberal government given up on electoral reform?

Has Justin Trudeau given up on electoral reform?

In a recent interview, the prime minister explained that the appetite for electoral reform has diminished now that his government has replaced Stephen Harper's. Some have seen this as an admission that the Liberals have lost interest in changing the way Canadians vote now that the system has put the Liberals in power.

But others see Trudeau as laying down the gauntlet to the opposition parties that are in favour of electoral reform: find consensus or it won't happen.

So where do things stand on the electoral reform issue? Can it still happen? And if the government is backing out, why did it start this process in the first place?

Joining me to discuss the issue are the CBC's Aaron Wherry and Kady O'Malley of the Ottawa Citizen.

You can listen to the podcast heresubscribe to future episodes here, and listen to past episodes here.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

As final debate looms, Hillary Clinton opens widest lead yet over Donald Trump

Donald Trump's worsening position in the polls was sparked by his poor performance during the first presidential debate and has been sustained by a torrent of problems dogging his campaign — including the emergence of allegations of inappropriate behaviour or sexual assault from about a dozen women.

Tonight's third and final presidential debate may be Trump's last opportunity to turn things around. And it's women — for whom Trump says he has "great respect" — who might just be the most significant obstacle to his White House ambitions.

You can read the rest of this article here.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Donald Trump and the war on polls

One of the few remaining polls showing Donald Trump in a competitive race with Hillary Clinton turns out to have been overly influenced by one young African-American voter from Illinois who, unlike virtually everyone else who fits his demographic profile, is a committed Trump supporter.

It's another knock against the credibility of polls at a time when Donald Trump is talking about the election being "rigged" and questioning the legitimacy of many reliable election surveys.

Trump has complained that a hostile media and widespread voter fraud, or a combination of both, could steal the election from him.

You can read the rest of the article here.

Friday, October 14, 2016

The Pollcast: Yukon goes to the polls

Yukoners will go to the polls on Nov. 7, the day before the presidential election south of the border — or, in the case of the Yukon, west of it.

But though the Yukon election is tiny by comparison, the result might be just as unpredictable.

The right-of-centre Yukon Party has governed the territory of about 37,000 people since 2002. Party leader Darrell Pasloski is asking for his second consecutive term as premier and his party's fourth. The New Democrats under Liz Hanson and the Liberals under Sandy Silver are both vying to replace Pasloski's government.

But polls in the territory are few and far between. The last one is eight months old, and a majority of Yukoners at the time said they were undecided.

So who has the inside track?

Joining me to discuss the territorial election is Chris Windeyer, editor of the Yukon News.

You can listen to the podcast heresubscribe to future episodes here, and listen to past episodes here.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Federal precedent favours Yukon Liberals, but campaign will decide the result

Yukoners will go to the polls to elect their territorial government on Nov. 7, barely a year after they cast their ballots in last year's federal election. So can the results of that 2015 vote provide any indication of what to expect at the end of this campaign?

While there is a definite relationship between the performance of territorial parties and their federal cousins, that relationship is only strong enough to provide a hint at what may be in store for the Yukon on election day.

You can read the rest of this article here.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

How Trump's campaign could cost the Republicans their majority in Congress

If Donald Trump's polling numbers don't improve, and soon, he won't win the White House.

But if the bottom continues to fall out of his campaign, he might drag the Republican-controlled Senate and House of Representatives down along with him.

Americans will not only be voting for their next president on Nov. 8. They will also be filling many other offices, ranging from county sheriff to state governor. The most important races after the presidency, however, will be in the two chambers of the U.S. Congress.

You can read the rest of this analysis here.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Donald Trump's dwindling paths to the White House

Even before the release of audio of lewd and offensive comments about women Donald Trump made in 2005, and before scores of fellow Republicans called on him to step down, Trump's chances of winning the U.S. presidency were looking slim.

They may now be non-existent. 

But if Trump somehow weathers this storm, an electoral map that puts him in the White House can be cobbled together if he can swing just a few battleground states in his direction.

You can read the rest of this article here.