Tuesday, May 11, 2010

New IR Poll: 6-pt Conservative Lead

On Saturday, Ipsos-Reid released a new poll, and my apologies for not posting about it sooner. One of my intrepid readers alerted me to it, and I thank her for that.Ipsos-Reid's last poll was taken between April 20-22, and compared to that one there has been very little change at the national level. The Conservatives, Liberals, and New Democrats remain unchanged at 35%, 29%, and 16%, respectively.

The Bloc Québécois has gained one point (10%) and the Greens are down one (9%).

In Ontario, the race has tightened as the Liberals have dropped three points to 36%. The Conservatives have gained one point and stand at 36% as well. The NDP is up one to 16%.

In Quebec, the Bloc is up four points to 39%, followed by the Liberals at 23% (down one). The Conservatives are also down one to 19%, and the NDP makes a gain of two at 13%.

In British Columbia, the Conservatives are well ahead with 42% (up three). The NDP (24%) is down three and the Liberals (22%) are down two. The Greens are down a point there to 9%.

Elsewhere, the Liberals hold a narrow lead in Atlantic Canada over the Conservatives, 35% to 33%. The Conservatives are down seven points to 54% in Alberta, while the Liberals are up nine (27%) and the NDP is down five (8%). In the Prairies, the Conservatives have 50% and the undisputed lead.

Support seems to divide along gender lines, as the Conservatives lead among males with 41% to the Liberals' 30% and the NDP's 15%. Among females, the Tories and Liberals are tied at 29% while the NDP is at 18%. Liberal, and to a lesser extent NDP, support is uniform, while the Conservatives have constructed their lead on male voters.

The Conservatives win 70 seats in the West, 45 in Ontario, 8 in Quebec, and 9 in Atlantic Canada for a total of 132.

The Liberals win 16 seats in the West, 48 in Ontario, 15 in Quebec, and 18 in Atlantic Canada for a total of 97.

The Bloc wins 51 seats in Quebec.

The NDP wins 9 seats in the West, 13 in Ontario, 1 in Quebec, and 5 in Atlantic Canada for a total of 28.

The Conservatives still take a hit compared to their present caucus, but the Liberals and NDP only combine for 125 seats.

There's one thing odd I noticed about this pollster's questions. They prompt for parties, but use different wording. When they list the parties, the say "The Conservative Party", "The New Democratic Party", "The Green Party", and "The Bloc Quebecois".

For the Liberal Party, however, they say "The Liberals". That seems like an odd thing to do, and I'm not sure why they would make a difference for the Liberal Party.

Would using the term "The Liberals" rather than "The Liberal Party" change a way a person would respond? What about if they used "The Conservatives" rather than "The Conservative Party"?


  1. What a stagnant poll, but still pretty interesting. I'm glad the Liberals and Conservatives are dogfighting in Ontario - it'll make it a very interesting election, whenever we have it.

    As for the difference in party prompting... I'm not sure if it would make a difference, but for IR to single out such a difference for only one party seems pretty odd.

    It could be they're mimicking how the Conservatives always say "the Liberals did this, the Liberals did that," etc. Whether this is maybe a test, or if its a mistake, or its pure bias, I don't know. But it's something.

  2. Is IR, trying to skew, just a little?

    I am not sure how much difference it would make but it seems to me that all parties should be mentioned the same way.

    Is there an anti Liberal bias, in the IR polls?

  3. I don't no what difference the wording makes but to me just saying "The Liberals" sounds unprofessional compared to "The Liberal Party", the same way saying "The Conservatives" sounds unprofessional.

    I would be surprised if it were just a mistake and wasn't intentional.

  4. Volkov weren't you also saying there was something fishy about Angus Reid after seeing their British performance?

    So the two polling firms that show the highest support for the CPC (and are rated the most accurate by Eric) have now come under attack by the partisan Liberals who post here.


    Nah, just a coincidence that those two firms in particular would come under attack.

    Anyways the wording should be changed. It helps the Liberals.

    It makes them sound more familiar and comfortable, less like a party and more like family. People don't like political parties these days.

    Anyone else worried about this pro-Liberal bias ?

  5. You're reaching for equivalences Shadow.

    AG is the highest rated pollster on this site. But their foray into UK politics has so far been wildly unreliable. One would think the reality of unreliability is relevent, especially compared to the appearance of unreliability that others have been accused of.

  6. 49

    No majority there and signs of a slow Tory demise

  7. Shadow,

    Ahuh, you're equivocating, mate.

    I question AR's polling on the basis that they've pretty much shown third parties gaining at the expense of the second parties, more so than any other pollster. I don't think its an anti-Liberal bias, I think it's just their methodology. I have many, many examples as well, if you wish to fight me on it.

    As for IR, it's Eric who brought this up, not me. I don't necessarily think it affects anything, but the fact that it's singled only to the Liberals makes me wonder why it was done. Is it a test of questioning, seeing what results they can get with different wording? Is it a mistake? I'm curious as to what it is. Aren't you?

    As for IR being "the most accurate," look at the leaning's chart you so often allude to whenever an Ekos poll comes up. Then plant your foot squarely in your mouth.

  8. kevinsutton let me address some of your points.

    "But their foray into UK politics has so far been wildly unreliable."

    Agreed. But that has zero relevence to their Canadian expertise. 538 admitted to making horrible predictions for the British election and yet they are still aces when it comes to American politics.

    "One would think the reality of unreliability is relevent, especially compared to the appearance of unreliability that others have been accused of."

    Except they're two seperate countries. Its apples and oranges.

    And are you refering to EKOS ? There's more than the appearance of unreliability, there is the reality of their ratings in Eric's model.

    What they're actually accused of is hurtful and hateful bias in their analysis of the data and for what purpose they use it for, not so much as getting their raw numbesr wrong.

    I haven't actually heard that accusation before, other than criticism that their methedology favours fringe parties.

  9. Volkov I think you're confused about what the leaning chart is compared to the rankings system.

    The leanings chart can't show a pollsters accuracy. I'm not sure why you brought it up or why the mention of it should prompt me to stick my foot in my mouth.

    Anyways, please explain how i'm equivocating or "reaching for equivalences" as Kevin said.

    Are you guys using those words incorrectly ?

    It seems that you are the one who is doing so by trying to equivocate the British experience with the Canadian experience.

  10. Nice cheap shot at EKOS who weren't the subject of ks post.

    Then a piece of garbled syntax that makes absolutely NO sense.

    Well done

  11. Shadow,

    The leanings chart is Eric's quite professional calculations of the different leanings of each of the pollsters. You claim that Angus Reid and Ipsos Reid are the most accurate because they show the highest Conservative numbers, then turn around and claim Ipsos Reid has Liberal bias because of the wording, then turn around again and say the Liberals are attacking in a partisan manner the two most accurate pollsters which show the highest Conservative numbers.

    You've done so many circles around this subject that the Gordian Knot would be jealous. I tell you to look to the leaning's chart for the specific purpose of showing you, from an objective source, about how the different pollsters fair in terms of leanings. How do their methodologies line up? What are the results? That sort of thing.

    It's clear from the leaning's chart and just casual observation that the Reids tend to show some different results. That's the point.

    As for "equivocating with the British experience," you're clearly not following along with anything I've said. Not only does it not matter where it shows up (Angus Reid has the same methodology no matter where it is), but that it's quite funny that in pretty much every case I've seen as I've followed Angus Reid's worldwide polling, the third party gains at the expense of the second, as compared with other pollsters and the end results. It goes with the UK, Costa Rica, Ukraine, Mexico, Hungary, Slovenia, Netherlands, Taiwan, Japan, New Zealand, etc. All polling done by AR in these countries has consistently shown third parties higher than usual and second parties lower than usual. That's a hell of a coincidence, don't you think?

    Yet you, sir, stay there and wouldn't give a damn because, oh look, the Conservatives are ahead, it must mean they're right! You make up your mind before the poll even comes out. That's just shameful, and has no place in reasoned debate.

  12. Peter your sarcastic attacks are simply unacceptable.

    Instead, please participate in the discussion.

    What specifically didn't you understand ?

    And yes, I believe KS was talking about EKOS when he said that other firms have been accused of unreliability. I don't know of anyone else in the news who's come under attack except EKOS.

    But both of us can let Kevin speak for himself and explain what he meant.


  13. And yes, I believe KS was talking about EKOS

    Because you WANTED to not because it 's reality! You don't know who he meant but your mind was made up before you read ks stuff.

    Your biases are so pronounced as in your battle with Volkov that the necessity of niceties is trumped by your arrogance.

    From now on anything you address to me will be ignored as something from a known unreliable source.

  14. Volkov tone it down a notch. Nobody is acting in a shameful manner.

    So forget the leanings chart and look at the weighting chart.

    They are seperate charts based on seperate calculations. The difference is sort of like precision vs accuracy.

    Whatever patterns you claim to have uncovered seem to serve AR well in the Canadian context since they are amongst the most accurate pollsters.

    Now let me untie the knot you've got yourself in:

    1) I claim AR and IR are the most accurate because that's how Eric has ranked them. The fact that they have a pro-Tory lean is irrelevent.

    2) My accusing IR of pro-Liberal bias was satire, it was meant to show that the wording could skew both ways and those probably had zero effect.

    3) Partisan Liberal posters on this website have made a habit of attacking AR and IR because they provide results they don't like.

    On the flip side Ekos and Environics are targeted.

  15. Ok Peter now your attacks have turned personal. Please stop that.

    I asked KS if he was refering to EKOS:

    "are you refering to EKOS ?"

    I didn't make my mind up ahead of time. It has nothing to do with personal bias, it has to do with what's been in the news lately.

    You're the one who appears to have jumped to the conclusion that KS wasn't talking about EKOS.

    Let's let KS speak for himself shall we ?

    I'm sure he'd be happy to clarify what he was talking about !

  16. Yes, Angus-Reid is the highest rated pollster (rating of 1.11). And yes, Ipsos-Reid is the second-highest, tied with Léger.

    But with a rating of 0.84, Ipsos-Reid is only marginally higher rated than EKOS at 0.79, so I would consider those two pollsters to be comparable.

  17. Volkov:
    You've done so many circles around this subject that the Gordian Knot would be jealous

    Very nice. I suspect wasted on the intended but nevertheless real class !


  18. Shadow,

    One, your satire seems highly unwarranted and suspect. I don't believe it was satire at all.

    Secondly, I don't think I've ever balked at AR or IR accuracy. I've questioned why they tend to get different results. You're making this into a fight over accuracy - I point out that their methodology makes some of the results questionable, and I won't appeal to Eric's authority and say, well AR is obviously the most accurate so I should fall in line and believe it. I won't. It's a good guideline, as is the leanings chart, but Eric isn't the end all of psephological thinkers (no offense Eric). And because of those questions, it's only reasonable to be skeptical of these polls.

    Thirdly, I don't think this is a bad poll for the Liberals. Why would I complain? And you've seen me go after the Ekos poll for its high Green numbers - is your selective memory kicking in and blocking out those parts? I have no interest in partisan games on a polling website, Shadow. I have questions and I want discussion. I don't appreciate unreasoned thought or partisan blabbering. I once remembered you saying the same.

  19. Offense taken, Volkov. I am God, and you have angered Me.

  20. Volkov:
    I once remembered you saying the same.

    Only because somebody else did that to him. It's one thing to do it but quite another to receive it !!

  21. Shadow,

    why can't you just allow people to make their opinions without abusing them?

  22. The UK Tories and Lib-Dems have formed a formal coalition (if Éric doesn't block the use of such offensive language on this site). Furthermore, that wasn't part of their campaigns. I await a stinging condemnation from the office of the Right Honourable Stephen Joseph Harper, since he's previously been very frank about his views on the subject.

    More seriously, this should draw some of the venom from the next election campaign here. It's hard to explain that a coalition in Canada is the work of the devil when the equivalent party in the Mother Parliament is a member of one.

    And steering this comment back to polls, the other event we'll be watching with some interest in the months to come is the referendum on voting reform. This was part of the Lib-Dem quid pro quo for joining the coalition, even though the Tories aren't keen on the idea. Of course, Canadian provincial referendums on electoral reform have failed. If things turn out more successfully in the UK, it may give an added boost to the next kick at the can here.

  23. Hopefully it does have the positive effects you mention.

  24. In my previous comment I left out a possible great leap forward in UK election reform: "It is also thought that the final deal includes proportional representation for local government elections."

    If true, this is the thin edge of the wedge. If PR is in locally, it's just a matter of time until it's there nationally. Which will leave India, the US and Canada in the rapidly foundering first-past-the-post boat.

    Nick, you rock.

  25. PoscStudent please don't comment just to pile on, it adds nothing to the discussion and turns things into a food fight.

    If you want to discuss something with me or take issue with something I said then please do so. I'm happy to respond.

    In fact i'm trying to be more receptive to other ideas and engage in a give and take without getting sucked into the usual partisan fights on here.

    And if abuse is truly your concern you'd sound a lot more believable if you spoke up to take issue with some of the disturbing personal insults Peter is directing towards me.

  26. Volkov you really don't believe me accusing IR of pro-liberal bias was satire ??

    Trust me, when a poll has the Liberals at Dion levels of support even the cruelest Tory wouldn't accuse the pollster of being overly kind to the Liberals.

    The point was to illuminate that the claim of bias could work both ways by echoing the words of 49 and PoscStudent but then coming to the exact opposite conclusion.

    Now, to the point about you raising questions about IR and AR.

    Isn't that the same as questioning their accuracy ? Otherwise why bring it up if it has no material effect on the results ?

    If you want to distrust Eric and be skeptical you have every right to do so but by definition you're raising questions about their accuracy as pollsters.

    As for your third point lets set it aside eh ?

    Its kind of contradictory to ask to engage in discussion with someone you've called "shamefull" and accused of engaging in "unreasoned thought" and "partisan blabbler".

    That kind of personal abuse is unwarranted.

  27. When Harper phoned David Cameron to congratulate him on becoming the new PM, of the UK, Harper scrupulously avoided using the word "coalition"

    Did Harper advise Cameron, on the illegalities of "coalition government"

    Did Harper tell Cameron, that he had no business in forming a coalition, because he had not campaigned on it?

    Did Harper advise Cameron, that coalitions were a circumventing of democracy?

    Did Harper, advise Cameron that coalitions were evil, and they were nothing but an unholy alliance?

    Serious questions that Mr. Harper must answer.

  28. Shadow,

    It's getting really annoying to comment when there is a closed minded person like you coming here and attacks people for having different views.

    I'm fine with you disagreeing with myself and others but why is it so hard for you to go about that sensibly?

  29. If PR is in locally, it's just a matter of time until it's there nationally.

    While I question your concept there for the sake of discussion lets define "local" as towns or cities.

    The next step would be to reach the county level, their equivalent of our provinces, then eventually reaching the national level.

    My suspicion is that if PR gets to the county level that's as far as it will get as the public won't like the results.

    AV might have a better chance but really should start at the county level.

  30. Peter: While I question your concept there for the sake of discussion lets define "local" as towns or cities.

    The next step would be to reach the county level, their equivalent of our provinces, then eventually reaching the national level.

    Or, we could use the UK definition. Some regions in England have multiple tiers of government, but many don't. There's only one tier of local government in Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales. There is no UK equivalent to a province.

    It's one step from UK local government to Westminster.

  31. OK John

    False assumption on my part. That given you'll never get Prop Rep at the National level I think.

    It could be tried for the regional assemblies but I suspect public backlash, It's too "foreign" to them IMO.

    AV could be tried for the regionals and see how it works.

  32. 49, that's an old tune and a boring one. The probablem with the NDP/Grit/Bloc coalition was always one of political legitimacy and political popularity.

    Since Stephane Dion's catagorically denied that he would enter in a coalition in the event of a minority in 2008, to promptly try to form such a coalition shortly thereafter was probablematic in the extreme. In contrast, neither Clegg nor Cameron ruled out some form of coalition with each other (or with other parties).

    And if you'd want a closer analogy with the Dion-Layton-Duceppe coalition of the goofy, imagine what the likely response would have been in the UK (or, at least in England) had Clegg entered into a coalition with Gordon Brown and Scottish and Welch nationalists(which, really, was the only alternative). That Clegg rejected such a coalition (despite the fact that ideologically, it would probably be more in tune with the Lib-Dems) suggests that he understood that such a coalition would be both profoudly unpopular (and therefore, detrimental to his long-term interest) and perceived to be illigitimate. In that, Clegg has better political instincts than either Layton or Dion (or, for that matter, Rae and Iggy).

    You can argue that the Dion-Layton-Duceppe coalition was legal, it surely would have been, but democratic government depends not just on legallity but on perceived legitimacy. The Dion-Layton-Duceppe coalition was not perceived to be legitimate (and would likely have caused long-term damage to the Liberal party, which is probably why Iggy dropped it ASAP after dumping Dion), the Clegg-Cameron coalition is.

  33. I don't see a problem with the UK coalition. Just as I don't see a problem with a Canadian coalition as long as it is acknowledged as a possibility. If Iggy and Jack and Gilles tell people that depending on the results they might form an agreement of some sorts, fine. Even if Iggy says he'd rather not discuss the possibility because he's focussed on winning a majority BUT DOES NOT DENY the possibility then fine. Did Cameron absolutely rule out a an arrangement or coalition with the Liberal Democrats? If so then I think what he did was wrong. From what I read it seemed to be common knowledge that if there was a minority parliament arrangements might be made.

    In the Canadian context Harper is attacked here on the board for saying it will be a CPC majority or an opposition coalition. Why? He's likely telling the truth. People have a right to know what they are voting for. Interestingly enough these posters then gloat with glee every time the NDP and Liberal seat totals in a poll out number those of the CPC. John you and Peter tell us that if Harper doesn't win a majority he's gone as PM. Yet if he has the temerity to campaign that way you're all over him. Explain that one.

  34. Clegg rejected the Labour offer for a variety of reasons. (Including it's membership) The fact that Labour backbenches were apparently revolting again and the negotiators refused to entertain PR is what sealed the deal according to the press.

    If the Tories are held to their offer of a referendum on preferential voting, (Since no manner of PR is apparently on the table for national votes) I think it should be a winnable one.

  35. the Clegg-Cameron coalition is.

    Now being referred to in the UK as the Con-Dem.

    I leave it to your imagination.

  36. Kevin Sutton: "Labour backbenches were apparently revolting again"

    When did they ever cease to be revolting?

  37. PoscStudent the last couple comments you've directed towards me contain no content except insults directed at me.

    Please don't address comments to me if all you're doing is attacking people on these boards.

    Let's try and keep things a bit more civil!

  38. Earl: John you and Peter tell us that if Harper doesn't win a majority he's gone as PM. Yet if he has the temerity to campaign that way you're all over him. Explain that one.

    I don't believe I've ever been "all over" Harper for campaigning on the basis of "Tories or the rest". That position is realistic and legitimate. He's welcome to do so.

    What I have taken issue with is Harper's mischaracterization of a coalition. He has called it "undemocratic" and the resulting government "illegitimate".

    This are simple, self-serving untruths, trotted out for venial tactical reasons. I condemn this assault on democracy not because I support one of the parties involved, but rather because I support our democratic institutions.

    On a related note, I recognize Carl's comments about perception. However, short-term hysterical perception engineered by a self-serving propaganda campaign of lies and misinformation is not grounds for rewriting our constitution on the fly.

  39. John I don't think that Harper was ever making a constitutional arguement, nor were any of us.

    In the British situation Brown's proposal was called "the coalition of the absurd" or "the coalition of the losers".

    There was a certain democratic disgust, a sense that they didn't play fairly.

    Just because something is technically legal doesn't mean its automatically good.

    Heaven's, if every attack on our laws or criticism of technically legal arangements were forbiden we'd be leaving in a very different place.

    Dissent is the highest form of patriotism.

  40. Things can get muddy pretty quickly using "rules" like that.

    Imagine in the next election that the Conservatives are knocked down to 31%, the Liberals take 29%, and the NDP takes 21% of the vote.

    Technically, the Conservatives would have "won" because they had the most votes and the most seats. But losing so much support while the opposition gain support would seem to give the electoral "win" to the Liberals and NDP, who could form a coalition with a majority of seats and 50% of the popular vote.

    If the NDP, instead, worked out a coalition with the Conservatives, wouldn't they then be hitching their wagon to a "loser"?

  41. I say this because the most likely outcome of the next election is a Conservative plurality with a significant drop in support, with the Liberals and NDP winning more seats and the Liberals, at least, gaining some support.

    If my current projection turned out to be the reality, would Ignatieff really be the "loser" of the election?

  42. Think about it: the new British Prime Minister is the man whose party was the only one to see a significant gain in support, in a coalition that gives him a majority of seats and more than 50% of the vote.

    If my projection became electoral reality, a Liberal-NDP coalition government would fulfill all of those criteria (except having a majority of seats).

  43. Eric I think people generally think that Martin was the loser in the 2004 election because he lost seats.

    Same with Harper, if he loses seats then he's the loser.

    If the Liberals want to form a coalition with the NDP they have every right to in those circumstances.

    PROVIDED, and this is pretty huge, they don't explicitly rule it out during the campaign.

    What Dion attempted to do was conduct a massive fraud on the voters because he ridiculed the notion of a coalition with the NDP and ruled it out.

    Centerish voters who were on the fence between the Liberals and the Conservatives probably would have bolted from the Liberal party if they knew a leftward policy shift and an NDP alliance was in the works.

    Dion's move essentially disenfranchised those voters.

  44. --- What Dion attempted to do was conduct a massive fraud on the voters because he ridiculed the notion of a coalition with the NDP and ruled it out.

    Centerish voters who were on the fence between the Liberals and the Conservatives probably would have bolted from the Liberal party if they knew a leftward policy shift and an NDP alliance was in the works.

    I'm not sure if that is an accurate assessment. Had Harper not pushed the opposition with his plan for canceling party funding, the whole thing might have been avoided.

    In the same way the Conservatives changed their policies on income trusts when faced with an unforeseen circumstance, the Liberals shouldn't be constrained by what they said during a campaign if the circumstances change.

  45. Eric all of those proposals in the fall mini-budget were withdrawn after it became clear they would not pass parliament, so its hard to use them as a justification.

    Dion wanted to be Prime Minister. He had no mandate, he had just lost a ton of seats, and he had promised not to do the very thing he was doing.

    "the Liberals shouldn't be constrained by what they said during a campaign if the circumstances change"

    A leader should look ahead at possible contingencies. Before they make a promise or statement they should decide if they'll be able to keep it.

    Leaders are expected to keep their promises and the voters expect to weight in and have their voices heard. That's the concept of "mandate" we have in our system.

    If they need to break a promise and change their mind like Chretien and Harper did over taxes then they should do so. But they should also take a hit in the polls.

    That's how it should be. Or else promises are meaningless and we lose the concept of "mandate" the has been an integral part of our system of gov't.

  46. Or else promises are meaningless

    This is politics we're talking about. Anybody who really believes political campaign promises has a severe mental problem.

  47. Dion's move essentially disenfranchised those voters.

    One of the first things that happen when you start drinking the Kool Aid is that the meanings of words change. They usually change to whatever the Right Wing party wants them to mean.

    In this case they are completely wrong. Disenfranchise means to remove the right to vote. What is being pushed here is a totally erroneous meaning. Let's get back to reality please. Nobody had their RIGHT TO VOTE removed.

  48. Indeed. Millions of Canadians would've gotten the Prime Minister they voted for.

  49. Peter you seem to be confused about what I actually just said.

    I used a qualifier, I said "essentially disenfranchised".

    I did not simply say "disenfranchised". Which has, as you said, a different and specific meaning.

    My point was that a substantial portion of voters who were torn between the Liberals and the Conservatives but voted Liberal in the end were fooled.

    Their vote was wasted, if they knew everything they would have changed it.

    How do we know this ?

    Because opinion polling showed a huge spike in Conservative support after coalition discussions came to light.

    Enough for a majority victory in fact.

    So Harper was held to a minority based on a lie so power could be taken afterwards ?

    Sounds pretty undemocratic to me.

  50. Eric if we just made Jack Layton Prime Minister then millions of Canadians would have gotten the Prime Minister they voted for too.

  51. The problem with the Dion - Layton - Duceppe arrangement was Dion's explicit rejection of a such a coalition in the election . In fact we now know that the Liberals and NDP were negotiating such an arrangement DURING the election campaign.

    Eric you attempt to equate Harper's change on a policy question with a governance question. Changing policy because of changing circumstance (although the evidence was flimsy) is different than saying we won't form a government with a particular party of the opposition and knowing that you are lying when you say that. The Liberals lost seats in the election. The new PM would have been someone with no mandate to govern, and if all had gone according to plan he would have been replaced by a party leader who didn't face the electorate seeking the job of PM.

    John I misread your position. Others here get very upset when I say that Harper will rightly campaign against a coalition. However since everyone here here sees that as the likely outcome should the CPC fall short of a majority he'd be a fool not make sure that voters have a clear choice. That said if he loses the campaign there should be no complaints about an undemocratic coalition as long as the opposition doesn't deny the truth of a coalition during the campaign.

  52. http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/article/808027--hebert-what-canada-s-politicians-could-learn-from-the-uk

  53. used a qualifier, I said "essentially disenfranchised".

    And that "essentially" = to all intents and purposes", which isn't a modifier or qualifier but an amplifier to your meaning of disenfranchised.

    Meaning since they didn't vote for the CPC they might as well not have voted. In other words insulting those voters who had the arrogance to NOT vote for the CPC. Funny thing though, more didn't vote for the CPC than did and the next election will see that number significantly increase

  54. Peter i'm the guy who wrote the sentence so i'm the one who knows what it means.

    You can't amplify disenfranchisment. Either you're allowed to vote or you're not.

    The use of the word "essentially" clearly modified the meaning of the sentence in such a way that I was not saying people were literally disenfranchised. Otherwise the inclusion of the word "essentially" would have been redundant.

    (Unless you're actually suggesting that I don't know the definition of the word disenfranchise).

    Nor am I saying that because people didn't vote for the CPC they might as well not have voted.

    Or that not voting CPC is somehow a sign of arrogance.

    I'm not at all sure where you drew any of these conclusions, no fair reading of my words could have given you that idea.

    I fear you may be twisting my words. I don't know if its because you have some kind of stereotype of me or if its intentionally hateful.

    What my words meant was that Dion's move invalidated the meaning and intent behind a swath of right leaning Liberal voters.

    They had their vote taken away from them. Which is the meaning of disenfranchisment, to have your right to vote taken away from you.

    That is why the essence of the two situations is the same, while not literally being so.

    That is the meaning of the word essentially.

  55. Parties often do things that their voters do not want them to do. That does not mean that their vote was stolen from them, it just means they misjudged their trust.

    A lot of fiscal conservatives were quite unhappy with what the Conservatives did with the stimulus. Are you saying Harper disenfranchised those voters?

  56. Eric its not a lot of fiscal conservatives, very few actually.

    Most are a pretty pragmatic bunch who knew the only alternative to the gov'ts spending plan was an opposition offering to spend even more.

    But there is a small minority who do feel disenfranchised, who wanted Harper to stand on principle even if it meant falling on his sword.

    They feel lied to, like their votes were wasted or stolen.

    So yeah they'll stay home next time around, or maybe they won't volunteer or donate, or maybe they'll still vote CPC but just because they like their local candidate personally.

    And that's the way it should be. Democracy is a two way street and elections are an important feedback mechanism that tells politicians when they are out of line.

    We don't elect a dictatorship. The public expects promises to be kept, they expect to be informed of what's happening, and they expect a chance to voice their opinions and be listened to.

    Otherwise they are, indeed, essentially disenfranchised.

  57. A lot of fiscal conservatives were quite unhappy with what the Conservatives did with the stimulus. Are you saying Harper disenfranchised those voters?

    Using his definition you would be correct.

  58. "Using his definition you would be correct."


    That's what I said in my above comment.


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