Thursday, September 2, 2010

New EKOS poll: 0.3-pt CPC Lead (down 4.3)

Yep, a 0.3 point gap. In other words, TIED! Finally, something interesting in this week's EKOS poll.So we have both major parties under 30%, with the Conservatives at 29.4% and the Liberals at 29.1%. Compared to two weeks ago, that is a drop of 3.1 points for the Conservatives and a gain of 1.2 points for the Liberals. Nothing to sneeze at in EKOS polling. Compared to last week (as EKOS polled over the last two weeks), this represents a drop of 1.7 points for the Conservatives and a gain of 1.5 points for the Liberals. It seems that most of the movement has taken place in the last week.

The New Democrats are also down, dropping 1.7 points from two weeks ago. They now stand at 15.7%, which is one point lower than they were one week ago.

The Greens make a gain of 2.7 points and are at 13.0%. The Bloc Québécois is at 10.9%.

The Conservatives lead among males, with 35.3% to the Liberals' 30.8%. However, the Liberals lead among females, with 27.4% to the Conservatives' 23.6%.

One of the reasons for this drop off in support for the Tories could be the census issue. EKOS asked their respondents about it, and only 26% agreed that the mandatory long form was "unnecessary" and a "violation of privacy". Fully 56% said that it would lead to vital information being lost. Key is that among Conservative supporters only 33% thought that it was an unnecessary violation of privacy. Appealing to their base, it seems, wasn't a good idea.

In Ontario, the Liberals have stormed ahead with a gain of three points over the last two weeks and lead with 39.1%. The Conservatives have gained one and are at 32.5%. That is, however, about three points lower than the 35.3% the Tories had a week ago. The NDP is at 15.5%, down two. The Liberals lead in Toronto with 45.4%, compared to 27.2% for the Conservatives. They also lead in Ottawa with 49.9% to the Tories' 32.3%.

The Bloc is well ahead in Quebec, jumping eight points to 44.3%. To show that isn't a fluke, the Bloc was at 42.9% in the first week of polling. The Liberals have fallen back, dropping five points to 20.1%. The Greens are next with 12.4%. The Conservatives are down five to 11.9% and the NDP is down one to 8.9%. This means virtually no opposition to the Bloc, who lead in Montreal with 45.1% to the Liberals' 21.9%.

This last week of polling saw a huge shift in British Columbia, with the NDP picking up seven points and leading with 31.1%. The Conservatives dropped 15 to 25.6% (11 of those points in the last week) while the Liberals are steady at 22.2%. The Greens are up six to 18.1%. The Conservatives lead in Vancouver with 34.8%, with the NDP close behind at 34.0%.

The Liberals jump eight points in Atlantic Canada with 44.3%, followed by the Greens at 19.4% (up 13). This is a bit wonky. The Conservatives are down 12 to 18.7% while the NDP is down 11 to 15.0%. Far more likely is the result from the first week of polling: 34.2% for the Liberals, 27.2% for the Tories, and 21.7% for the NDP.

The Conservatives lead in Alberta with 58.0%, followed by the Liberals at 15.5%.

The Conservatives also lead in the Prairies, where they have picked up 10 points. They're at 51.2%. The Liberals are up nine to 23.1% and the NDP is down 18 to 16.1%.

More than a few big changes, but we are comparing polls with two weeks passing between them, and August has been relatively tumultuous.

The Liberals (yes, they're first) win 59 seats in Ontario, 25 in Atlantic Canada, 15 in Quebec, and 14 in the West and North for a total of 113. Enough to form a minority, though they could've done better in the West and in Quebec.

The Conservatives win 61 seats in the West, 34 in Ontario, four in Atlantic Canada, and three in Quebec for a total of 102.

The Bloc wins 57 seats in Quebec against virtually no opposition.

The NDP wins 19 seats in the West, 13 in Ontario, and two in Atlantic Canada for a total of 34.

The Greens win one seat in British Columbia and one in Atlantic Canada for a total of two.

It's been awhile since one of these polls has put the Liberals on top. It would be a tiny minority, requiring support from either the Bloc or the Conservatives to get legislation passed. But, a minority nevertheless.

There are a few things in this poll that tell me there are a few dangerous things in it for the Conservatives that shouldn't be chalked up to polling error. First, this is not the only poll to show little or no gap between the two parties. Second, the Liberals have a significant lead among women, which is not new. Third, the census result is not very good, especially when only 1/3 of Conservatives support it.

For the Conservatives, volatility in British Columbia, faltering in Ontario, mid-to-low teens in Quebec, and strong Liberal performances in Atlantic Canada are not unique to this poll.

Going into the fall session, the Conservatives are on the defensive. They need to avoid pushing the opposition into an election for the time-being. While they hold the advantage, the momentum is not on their side. Their one ace-in-the-hole is that the Liberals scuppered this kind of lead last year at exactly this time. It will be up to Michael Ignatieff not to do it again.

50 comments:

  1. Eric

    I wonder how much of the Liberal "gain" came from the NDP ?

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  2. First:
    The NDP loss I suspect came mainly from the Long Gun registry issue as the Liberals have cleverly painted them as allowing the registry to be scrapped.

    Second. Eric's projected seats indicate a Liberal minority govt. If we factor out the Bloc, who are most likely to support Liberal legislation that leaves the Tories with only the NDP to ally with. Seems unlikely to me though I don't consider Layton as anywhere near the statesman that Douglas, Lewis and Broadbent have proven to be in the past.

    It's not a "slam dunk" but the potential looks really quite good.

    If the Liberals can keep the Bloc onside that's 170 seats vs the Tory-NDP at 136. It's a no-brainer !

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  3. These numbers aren't real.

    The Tories and Dippers are too low and the Grits and Greens are too high. (The Bloc's a whiff on the high side too.) The statistical tie is an artifact of variation. The Green seat in Atlantic Canada is, sadly, a mirage. For now. (On the other hand, an Ontario seat or two are distinct possibilities.)

    What's the basis for these didactic claims? The usual suspect: the trend graph on page 4 of the EKOS report.

    Having said that, these numbers aren't real today. The slow decline of the Tories and the matching rise of the Grits are real; it's only the timing that's off. The Liberal Express was low-key but, in the end, probably effective; Ignatieff is positioning himself as the connected one and pulling it off.

    These kind of numbers could reflect actual ballot-box support before October and certainly by November, the fall election window. If Ignatieff locates his spine amidst the numbers and the trends, we'll be pounding signs as we walk away from the cenotaphs.

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  4. Eric,

    Does your model suggest which seats will go a given way? I'm particularly curious with the prediction that a seat in the maritimes would go to the Greens... I can only think "which one?" Presumably the seat they are most likely to win is the one Elizabeth May ran in last election... but just writing "Peter MacKay will lose his seat to the Green Party" suggests to me how absurd a notion that is.

    So, I'm very curious: where in the Maritimes does the Green party appear to be running a candidate with enough name recognition, against a weak enough incumbent to take a seat? Or, if it's just the stats talking... In what seat to the trend that high?

    Thanks,

    Richard

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  5. My model doesn't go down to the level of individual seats. I have a certain bar for the Greens to get over to put them in a position to win a seat, and that bar wasn't established by Ms. May's performance in Central Nova.

    However, there were a few other ridings in Atlantic Canada where the Greens performed well enough. If the Greens were truly at 19.4%, that would be an increase of 330%. There are a few seats where a proportional increase puts them in a good position to challenge for a seat. Do I think it will happen? No. But at 19.4% and second in Atlantic Canada, I had to give them one seat.

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  6. Peter, I'm thinking the same thing. With the NDP down to single digits in Quebec, I'd like to know where those votes have swung to. In Quebec it may not the the Libs, but rather to the BQ.

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  7. Is Charlie Angus really ready to put his seat on the line over the gun-registry?

    I'm reading it, and still can't believe it. It's like taking a 12 gauge, and blowing your political head off.

    As an added bonus, the hillarious Woody the horse video is embedded.

    "We gotta reign Iggy in." LOL.

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  8. Eric
    I wonder how much movement is due to the liberal express and how much is a reflection of provinvial polictics? I would say that in BC the NDP rise makes sense because of the their opposition to the provincilal lib/fed tory HST- and reflective of their assent in provincial polls.In Quebec, the Charest govt patronage scandal could draw support away from the three main federalist parties to the bloc. In the maritimes Ekos is confirming the HD poll almost exactly, and maybe the provincial election where the libs are doing well is having an influence. I think in Ontario and the maritimes the tour is drawing support from the tories and NDP and having an effect overall certainly, but it's always more than one thing. Things are getting interestin' eh? Thanks for all your hard work

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  9. Ekos BC result for the 6-day period August 18 - 24 (sample size 194)

    C - 37%
    L - 24%
    NDP - 23%
    G - 13%

    One week later, Ekos BC result (with only about 50% the sample size for the previous week at 105) changes dramatically as follows:

    C - 26% (-11%)
    L - 22% (-2%)
    NDP - 31% (+8%)
    G - 18% (+5%)

    Firstly, these huge and dramatic yo-yo swings don't exist in BC politics - I've been following large size sample polls (500 - 1,000) in BC for over 15 years (Mustel/Ipsos).

    Secondly, a sample size of less than 300 is usually useless. The first week Ekos utilized a 194 sample size. The second week a smaller 105 sample size. Total comes in at 299.

    Eric, would you consider weighing/combining these two Ekos sample sizes in the future as IMHO it would provide a more accurate snapshot (well, at least better) - even though it's spread out a bit further time-wise.

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  10. Globe and Mail

    Seat projections based on the EKOS survey, released Thursday morning, show the Liberals winning 110 seats compared to 100 for the Tories. The NDP would have 34 seats, down two from current levels.

    According to the projection, the Bloc would take 60 of the 75 seats in Quebec, up from the 48 they have now. And the Green Party would win three seats – two in Atlantic Canada and one in British Columbia.

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  11. "With the NDP down to single digits in Quebec, I'd like to know where those votes have swung to. In Quebec it may not the the Libs, but rather to the BQ."

    Yes I think that is where they have gone in Que.

    But nationally, with the exception of BC, they have gone towards the Libs.

    Now another question has kicked up for me. Does this seem a shift from Progressive Conservatives towards the Libs? After all the two old parties weren't that far apart ?

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  12. Good question for those who abhor Harper's style of government - what is Iggy going to do differently?

    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/opinions/where-is-ignatieffs-plan-to-restore-our-democracy/article1693052/

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  13. Peter,

    "According to the projection, the Bloc would take 60 of the 75 seats in Quebec, up from the 48 they have now. And the Green Party would win three seats – two in Atlantic Canada and one in British Columbia."

    Now let me see: math has never been my strong point (just ask Shadow!) but last time I checked, 60 potential Bloc seats + 15 Liberal ones means nothing, nada, zip for the Conservatives. So much for "holding" their seats...

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  14. C'mon guys. There are so many things wrong with this poll I don't know where to start.

    Although it certainly feels like history repeating.

    Almost one year ago today the Liberals were TIED.

    By the time parliament was sitting again in mid september the Tories had a 7 point lead.


    Is it possible that polling in the dead of August, when nobody cares about politics and everybody is on vacation, just might be a waste of time ??

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  15. "So much for "holding" their seats...
    "

    I that ever right !!

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  16. Shadow,

    Do you really want to look at this on a theoretical plane???

    OK, I'll bite. Sure we've been even-Stephen!!! at least three (3) times in the past and then lost momentum. It might happen again.

    OR

    It might not. Could it be possible that the shelf life of this government has finally begun to run out? Would it be reasonable to suggest that the Harper government has worn out its welcome with the Canadian people. Again possible. Likely? Well, to be fair, I guess we'll both be focusing intently on subsequent polls.

    Again to be fair, perhaps Conservatives should be at least concerned. Not too far a stretch, don't you think?

    ReplyDelete
  17. Both 2008 and 2009 saw the government move from a close race to big leads in September which lasted until the new year and then slowly faded again.

    Not to discount the census scabble or other problems the CPC has had, (Which I believe do dove-tail with CPC losing ground in polls) but the seasonal coincidence is curious. It might be that opinions change simply as the election threat dissipates and revert when there's fall election talk again. Or maybe the Conservatives just tend to act with less tact when there's no fall election threat.

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  18. Good points by many on how these numbers do seem a bit off. As much as I'd love the GPC to win seats in Atlantic Canada I don't expect it to happen, nor do I expect them to beat the CPC & NDP in Quebec.

    The key will be watching as more and more polls are done in September. Will they move back to the standard which seems to be low-mid 30% for CPC, high 20's for LPC, high teens for NDP, 10 for GPC and 9 for BQ or will we see a new standard where the LPC and CPC are in a virtual tie?

    I'm suspecting we'll see it go closer to the usual as there have been a few issues to shift things around (census for example) but nothing that I'd expect would cause a sea change. Until an election occurs I figure we'll stick around the same range.

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  19. This is great news for the Conservatives!

    When you include the "unreported voters", account for the voluntary nature of the poll, and add the "silent majority" in, this points to a CPC landslide! Stephen Harper will be seeking Frank McKenna's advice on how to run Parliament with zero opposition seats. He'll actually outdo Saddam Hussein's results (98% claimed) in his last election.

    The Liberals, NDP, Greens and Bloc are now consigned to the dustbin of history.

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  20. Éric - I assume your projection will include both this result and the first week polling result as well. Am I correct?

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  21. Ron the CPC has no need to be concerned with this poll because it simply is NOT credible.

    Not even the Liberals believe it!

    Their own internal pollster just told them at their rally a couple of days ago that the CPC is +6 on them.


    But hey, if you guys want an exact repeat of last year get your leader to go out and say "your time is up!!!"

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  22. I would suggest that the Bloc vote in Quebec is soft by about 15 seats if not more. People in Quebec are trendy and many are former Liberal voters who can come back to the fold if enticed enough.

    Ontario is now finally breaking into higher numbers for the Libs and this could be just the start of their growth there.

    If the Libs play smart politics they could win upwards of 140 seats as Harper has lost momentum and won't pick it back up any time soon. In fact I suggest he himself is toast.

    The Libs are now managed by serious adults who know the winning formula well and they are

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  23. Ira, yes, both weekly polls have been put into the model.

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  24. Terence,

    With respect, it takes one thing to move the Liberal numbers in Quebec -- and that is absolutely out of the question at this time. Liberal fortunes will shift in that province but not unless Michael wins a majority mandate. At that point, he will be able to deploy a full-court-press Quebec strategy which will be able to deflate the Bloc considerably.

    Again, Quebec will remain Bloc territory unless the Liberals obtain a majority mandate. Risk is a proportional thing. Under a minority Liberal mandate, any serious Quebec strategy has to be relegated to the backburner for obvious political reasons...

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  25. This EKOS survey also asked people for their opinions on the census. The decision to make the long-form census voluntary was unpopular. It would be interesting to see in what order the census question was asked in relation to the question about vote intention. If the census question was asked first, it could have biased answers to the vote intention question. It will be interesting to see what the results are like next time when, presumably, the census question won't be asked.

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  26. These and many other polls will certainly tested by the byelections this fall. If the Liberals are doing well then there should be gains is some of these byelections.

    1) In Manitoba, when Winnipeg North is fought in the urban NDP seat, the Liberals should improve. In fact Provincial Liberal MLA Kevin Lamoureaux is leaving his seat to go up against NDP's Kevin Chief. With this 'star' candidate the Liberals are going all in, in riding, but this has been NDP since the CCF days.

    2) Dauphin – Swan River – Marquette will be retained by the CPC, no discussion there.

    3) Vaughan, the wild card. A CPC pickup only if Julian Fantino runs for the CPC. Let's just say that one will be a communty vote for Fantino, not for Harper. But embarrassing for Ignatieff. If Fantino does NOT run then it should be a Liberal hold.

    4) Now with the talk of Duceppe pushing Jean-Yves Roy out of Haute-Gaspésie – La Mitis – Matane – Matapédia, where Liberal Nancy Charest almost defeated him and is running again, this (beside Vaughan), is the Liberals #1 priority seat. A win by the BQ will demonstrate a limited ability for the Liberals to win more seats outside of Montreal.

    And if the Liberals cannot pick up more seats in Quebec, with the Conservatives no longer spitting the vote in Ontario, where can they gain 40 more seats?

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  27. Northern Raven how do you think the gun registry issue will play in Haute-Gaspésie – La Mitis – Matane – Matapédia ??

    With the NDP/Greens non-existent and the BQ and Liberals being pro-registry that seems like it could leave an opening for the CPC in the riding.


    And they were in second place in '06.

    A by-election is something of a free shot for non-incumbent parties.

    I'd expect full CPC resources and a star candidate to make a run at this thing.

    ReplyDelete
  28. Well I live up in Northern Ontario, in Nippissing District. The gun registry debate is having an effect here, particularly because the incumbant is a Liberal who now has to change his mind. The Nippissing riding has the potential to change to the CPC, because of the registry.

    But I do NOT understand the politcal dynamics of the Gaspe region. The gun registry in that part of Quebec likely is not on top of mind. I suspect that the CPC strategy would be very similar to the strategy of how they won Riviere-du-Loop with Bernard Genereaux, by recruiting a town mayor or local 'star' candidate, and making infrastructure announcments in the riding before the vote.

    But that said I think the dynamic will be primarily between the Bloc and Lib. Nancy Charest appears to be a strong local candidate. But a strong CPC candidate would likely cause a split in the federal vote, and the Bloc Candidate will win. And unlike Riviere-du-Loop Duceppe will NOT let this seat lose easily. So the local politics will be a bigger factor than the gun registry.

    And Eric, excellent coverage of the NB Election, you are providing a valuable public service. These Blogs are great.

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  29. Let us all not forget that Sheila Fraser's audit of the Economic Action Plan is due out in November.

    Now if it is anything like her other audits we can expect a plethora of scandal.

    Which if the Liberals handle it properly says an early election in January or February with a resulting Liberal minority Govt.

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  30. It seems to me that the annual cycle others have mentioned (where the Liberals gain over the summer, then crash and burn in the fall) has had a lot to do with elections -- certainly last year Ignatieff's election threat seemed to plunge the party downwards. The lesson would seem to be: either shut up about elections, or find a compelling reason for an election, and then make it happen. The intermediate strategy, of threatening an election for vaguely-defined reasons, then backing off when it starts to look scary, seems somehow not to work very well.

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  31. Peter,
    Ajbeecroft,

    We have to go now. We can't wait on Fraser's report and the speculative nature that it will be a disaster for this government.

    I'm not interested in a buildup to another probable dud.

    Find our issue -- raise hell like we've never done before and then sink the Harper government within a matter of WEEKS!

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  32. Peter,

    So, if I understand correctly, you won't be pushing Dimitri Soudas for this Prime Minister's "next" Chief of Staff???

    That's what I thought.

    ReplyDelete
  33. "you won't be pushing Dimitri Soudas for this Prime Minister's "next" Chief of Staff???"

    Ummmm?? No I think not !! (g)

    ReplyDelete
  34. "Find our issue -- raise hell"

    All well and good but why not do something a little more sensible?

    Rip the Hell out of the Govt till sometime in late October. Then force an election. Fraser comes out early November and there is bound to be lot's of ammo there !! Win-win IMO

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  35. I'd like to remind Peter that the "Economic Action Plan", while designed and administered by the Conservative government, was the opposition's idea.

    If Canadians want parliamentarians to work together, the "Economic Action Plan" is exactly what they'll get.

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  36. A Harper advisor - now there is an oxymoron !

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  37. "while designed and administered by the Conservative government, was the opposition's idea."

    Precisely and the wear it no matter how you spin !!

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  38. "whiledesigned and administered by the Conservative government"

    Thar's the whole point, isn't it. the Tories wear it !!!

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  39. Eric

    The one thing those latest numbers show is the development of a serious dichotomy in the country.

    Simplistically the West is Conservative, the East is Liberal and the buffer is in Ontario.

    In actual fact this does bode ill for the country as a whole.

    Now if we speculate a Bloc "collapse" it just gets worse as most of the Que seats would go Liberal probably yielding a Liberal majority govt with very little representation west of Ont. Not a good thing at all.

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  40. Peter,

    IMHO, there is a lot more ammo in the threatened independence of the CRTC -- not to mention the possible replacement of the Chair and some members if they don't sing from this government's songbook.

    This Prime Minister is fond of meetings with American broadcasters -- or so it seems.

    This one is bound to be explosive. Keep digging!

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  41. Peter,

    "Rip the Hell out of the Govt till sometime in late October. Then force an election. Fraser comes out early November and there is bound to be lot's of ammo there !! Win-win IMO"

    How can we be so sure? The Conservatives aren't exactly dolts -- they were smart enough to put this into the hands of the neutral public service. Translation: the previously intimidated are bound to have designed the EAP correctly and ethically. Point One; Secondly, to my mind, the only meat here is the previously revealed fact that as much money as possible has gone into Conservative held ridings. No big news here. Every government does this. Doesn't exactly strike me as an election issue.

    Point Three: if this Prime Minister knew all hell could break lose, he would have fought the audit -- or at least delayed it as much as possible. Quite obviously, the Harper government only expects minor damage which it feels it can contain with minimal damage to the Conservative brand.

    I'll bet you there's much more meat in MP expenses then will be found under the EAP. But I could be wrong...

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  42. "IMHO, there is a lot more ammo in the threatened independence of the CRTC -- not to mention the possible replacement of the Chair and some members if they don't sing from this government's songbook.

    This Prime Minister is fond of meetings with American broadcasters -- or so it seems.

    This one is bound to be explosive. Keep digging! "

    I'm sure you are aware of the recent CRTC decision about higher speeds on the Bell owned internet system. Bell is very unhappy, they have gone to Cabinet to get this overturned apparently. Will Cabinet overturn the CRTC decision in the face of public wrath?? My guess is YES and that will be another CPC fubar !!

    This country has some of the worst internet access in terms of speed and availability and some of the worlds highest prices for both internet and cellphone service. Will the CPC act for the public good?

    My guess ??

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  43. "How can we be so sure? The Conservatives aren't exactly dolts "

    No but they are arrogant and as Iggy calls them "ruthless"!! Apt description IMO.

    "Secondly, to my mind, the only meat here is the previously revealed fact that as much money as possible has gone into Conservative held ridings."

    Nothing unusual in that. But it is where it went that counts. Remember AdScam ?? My guess is something very similar.

    "if this Prime Minister knew all hell could break lose, he would have fought the audit" He can't, plain and simple, neither could Chretien. It's public funds expenditure and that' Sheila's mandate. PERIOD

    Nobody can keep her away, not even Harper.

    Anti
    Fox News North Petition

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  44. Peter,

    Ruthless. What a waste of time. Everyone KNOWS this Prime Minister is a [fill in the blank]. You don't defeat Harper on personality, you beat him on points.

    You get the Liberal plan out there and you push it hard -- then you sink this government.

    That's how we'll win unless we once again extend the limbo period beyond what is appropriate. I don't expect that. I think Michael has finally learned his lesson. He knows that the time for going for the gusto IS NOW.

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  45. Ron

    "You get the Liberal plan out there and you push it hard -- then you sink this government.
    "

    Which apparently is exactly what they have been doing all summer and it is working. One of the reasons the numbers are going up. The public apparently wants to hear about health care, education and the economy. Law and order isn't resonating. Jobs are !!

    The Big Shootout comes shortly after the House returns over both the long gun and census issues. Let's see how those play out ?

    For goodness sake don't leap on your horse and ride madly off in all directions !! That's really counterproductive!!

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  46. Peter,

    "For goodness sake don't leap on your horse and ride madly off in all directions !! That's really counterproductive!!"

    I'll tell you what's counterproductive -- it's called vacillation, uncertainty, procrastination and plain cowardice. When a party does that it looks like a bunch of fools who happen to be both inept and incompetent.

    Now, this is a test for Liberals...are we planning to wear the above or will we wisely let the New Democrats wear it this fall?

    I guess we'll both see -- apparently sooner rather than later -- or at least that's what some on this board CLAIM!

    (I call 'em like I see them Peter. And I don't particular care who happens to like it or not. They can tell me what to say and when to say it WHEN or IF they happen to pay my salary as a political operative -- and not before. Notice how I'm not holding my breath since I switched parties...)

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  47. Ron

    I'll tell you what's counterproductive -- it's called vacillation, uncertainty, procrastination and plain cowardice.

    Maybe yes and maybe no. Vacillation we've had a plenty !! Agreed

    Uncertainty is a norm

    Procrastination, no I don't really think so.

    Cowardice? Yep

    However the Liberals have done something right through procrastination. They have allowed the Tories to essentially destroy themselves. This summer has seen a series of massive hits on them from their own stupid, ideological thinking.

    Meanwhile, essentially below the radar the Liberals on Iggy's bus trip, have been field testing their program elements, fine tuning where necessary and putting together something the public apparently likes and wants to hear more about.

    This summer has seen a litany of Tory screw-ups and the public is getting fed up. Given the track record we can expect more this Fall. What's not to like?

    in other words don't rush your fences. Let the Tories have all the rope they need to hang themselves !!

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  48. Peter,

    I'm on board with the strategy until December. After that, all bets are off if we haven't sunk Harper, or at least tried to.

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  49. "After that, all bets are off if we haven't sunk Harper, or at least tried to"

    Definitely works for me Ron

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