Tuesday, April 5, 2011

154 to the Conservatives, 154 to the Opposition

We're finally starting to get some new polls in addition to the very useful Nanos daily tracking. This morning the latest Harris-Decima was added to the projection (removing, where needed, the previous Harris-Decima poll that partly overlapped with some of the regional results in this newest release). The results of the update are a few seat gains for the Conservatives, and a few vote gains for the Liberals.
With a gain of two seats, the Conservatives now stand at 154, exactly half of the seats in the House of Commons. However, they have also dipped 0.2 points nationally to 38.6%. The Liberals, meanwhile, are unchanged at 71 seats but have gained 0.5 points (a relatively large gain in the projection). They now have the projected support of 27.6% of Canadians.

The New Democrats drop the two seats, and now stand at 32. They are also down 0.1 points to 16.8%. The Bloc Québécois is unchanged at 9.4% nationally and 51 seats, while the Greens are down 0.1 points to 6.4%.

The Conservatives are relatively stable, not losing or gaining more than 0.2 points in any part of the country.

The Liberals, however, jumped everywhere. They had infinitesimal gains of 0.1 points in the Prairies and Quebec, decent gains of 0.4 points in Alberta and Ontario, and larger gains of 0.6 points in British Columbia and Atlantic Canada. While it did not translate into any extra seats, it puts them closer in a few. The gain of 0.4 points in Ontario is especially significant.

The New Democrats, like the Tories, were also pretty stable. But the drop of 0.4 points in the Prairies and 0.3 points in Ontario cost them a seat in each region.

The Bloc is up 0.2 points in Quebec to 38.8% after a few days of slow decline. They still hold a very large lead over the Conservatives and Liberals, larger than they had in 2008.

The Conservatives picked up Elmwood - Transcona and Sault Ste. Marie from the New Democrats, in Manitoba and Ontario respectively. Lawrence Toet in Elmwood - Transcona and Bryan Hayes in Sault Ste. Marie are now the projected winners for the Conservatives in these ridings.


  1. Eric, as pointed out by this morning's G&M piece, Nanos now has them TIED in Ontario. What do you make of the "blip or bump" question? (Even as a Liberal, I suspect blip).

  2. The conservatives are at 35% in the latest HD and statistically tied with the Liberals in Ontario, and somehow they have "gained" two seats?

  3. Shawn,

    Statistically speaking, yes you could say they are tied in Ontario. But it still has them ahead (41.1% to 39.6%). I'm not sure, my perception is that Ignatieff has had a much better campaign than Harper, so I was expecting a bump eventually. But I think it is more likely a blip, at least until we see some numbers from other pollsters.


    The projection does not swing wildly based on single polls. And while HD has them at 35% nationally, they have them well ahead in Ontario. So the HD and Nanos polls more or less balance each other out in Ontario.

    And note that the seat gains came at the expense of the NDP, not the Liberals.

  4. A non-NDP MP in Transcona? I find that hard to believe, no matter how well the Conservatives are polling in Manitoba.

  5. Eric, I would love to see a breakdown at some point of how the Liberal platform is doing with women voters (and I suspect you would, too).

    If the Liberal platform -- or Ignatieff's performance -- at least succeeds in restoring the party's lead with women voters in Ontario, then the Conservatives path to a majority government is finished, it seems to me.

  6. Half/Half. Damn that would be a funny result.

  7. Shawn,

    I'll keep an eye on the gender breakdowns.

  8. "A non-NDP MP in Transcona? I find that hard to believe, no matter how well the Conservatives are polling in Manitoba"

    Jim Maloway held on to the seat for the NDP in 2008 by 5% 1500 votes. In a very weak NDP caucus Maloway has been sort of like your posting name "anonymous".

    Maloway is not Bill Blaike.

  9. There was some bizarre talk about the Tories targetting Elmwood-Transcona this year with their "ethnic strategy" because the place has a large Ukrainian-Canadian population. This left me scratching my head a bit. Yes, a lot of people there have some Ukrainian blood, but they would all be descendents of people who immigrated from Ukraine when it was still part of Tsarist Russia a hundred years ago! I'm not quite sure how you go about "targeting" someone because they are one quarter Ukrainian from 100 years ago! Its not as if the NDP favours reincorporation of Ukraine into Russia! Anyways, as things stand, the Tories came up with a last minute candidate whose name does NOT end in "chuk" and who appears to be a bit of a nobody...

  10. Hey,the coalition lost 2 more seats !Are liberals realy ROARING ahead or is Harper
    entering majorityland ?Majority certainly not
    out of reach..N'est-ce pas ?


  11. Here's a question to ponder: in a 154-154 situation, who loses the tie because of the selection of the speaker?

  12. Safe to say blip given the release of the platform and subsequent media coverage of platform.

  13. Goaltender Interference05 April, 2011 14:31

    A fun thought experiment!
    My guess is that if Harper got 154 seats, he would forbid anyone in his caucus from accepting the speaker's job. Ignatieff would probably do the same (if the Liberals only win 72 seats, Ignatieff's leadership will be shaky enough without handing Harper a majority on the first day of Parliament). I suppose that Layton and Duceppe wouldn't be too crazy about that either-- they have had a lot more influence in the minority government era.

    It would be ideal for any maverick MP or backbencher who has ever felt slighted by his leader to seek payback by running for speaker against the leader's will. Or, even better, cross the floor! It would be like Belinda Stronach/Chuck Cadman II.

  14. If no one ran for the position of Speaker, the House could not open and no legislation could be brought forward. The government would be in limbo until a Speaker was elected. This is one of the unexpected consequences of having an elected Speaker.

  15. If the Conservatives get between 150- and 154 Mp's will be crossing the floor. At 154, someone would absolutely 100% cross the floor.

    It's better to play the game of who will cross the floor than who will be speaker.


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