I thought now would be as good a time as any to see how the parties have done over the summer. The image to the left is the projection I made on June 21, just before parliament closed and the summer began.
As you can see, things have changed. The Liberals have gone from 121 seats and 33.7% of the vote to 110 seats and 32.3% of the vote, a loss of almost 1.5 points.
The Tories have gone from 32.4% of the vote and 117 seats to 33.0% of the vote and 125 seats. A smaller movement, which argues that the Liberals were the 'losers' of the summer rather than the Tories being the winners.
The NDP has seen its position improve, from 15.2% of the vote and 21 seats to 15.8% of the vote and 24 seats. No doubt the August convention in Halifax played a role in that modest rebound.
The Greens have gained 0.6 points to stand at 9.4% from 8.8% at the end of June. The Bloc has remained steady (going from 9.1% to 9.2%) at 49 seats.
For the Conservatives, their biggest regional gain has come in Quebec, where they have moved from 14.5% to 16.0%. They've picked up two seats in Quebec and Alberta each, and four in Ontario. They've improved by one point in Ontario and 0.9 points in British Columbia. Their biggest loss was in the Prairies, where they have dipped from 48.0% to 47.3%.
The Liberals have not gained any ground anywhere. Their biggest drop comes in Alberta, from 19.6% to 17.4%. They've also lost 2.1 points in Quebec, 1.8 points in British Columbia, and 1.7 points in Ontario. They've dropped two seats in British Columbia, Alberta, and Quebec, one in Atlantic Canada, and four in Ontario.
The NDP has not lost any ground anywhere, their biggest gain coming in Atlantic Canada where they've moved from 23.6% to 25.5%. They've also gained 0.4 points in Ontario but haven't moved an inch in Quebec. Their seat gains come in British Columbia (two) and Atlantic Canada (one).
The Bloc Quebecois has remained steady, gaining 0.2 points over the summer in Quebec.
The biggest Green gain is in Ontario, where they've increased their vote from 9.7% to 10.1%. Their biggest losses come in the Prairies and Atlantic Canada, where they've dropped by 0.8 points apiece. Elizabeth May only gained 0.2 points in British Columbia, where they need to do even better than they already are.
So, clearly the summer has been beneficial for Jack Layton and disappointing for Michael Ignatieff. But the summer is known for being rough on the opposition and Stephen Harper has really only tread water, though his gains in Quebec and Ontario were positive for him. Gilles Duceppe can be pleased with his summer, as he was mostly out of the limelight but is no worse off for it.
Let's see how September plays out, in the run-up to the election (if it happens).