Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Momentum with Notley's NDP in Alberta

The numbers continue to amaze, as a new poll this morning puts Wildrose and the New Democrats neck-and-neck in Alberta's provincial election campaign. The governing Progressive Conservatives, gunning for their 13th consecutive electoral victory stretching back to the Nixon administration, have dropped out of the three-way race.

The projection still gives Wildrose the lead with 31% support, or between 29% and 33%. The New Democrats overlap a fair bit, with between 26% and 31% support (or 29% more precisely). The PCs are in third with between 24% and 28% (or 25%), while the Liberals trail at length with 10% to 12% support.

Wildrose also has the edge in seats, and is projected to take 35. The PCs come up second by a hair with 24, while the NDP takes 23. 

But the ranges tell a more nuanced story. While Wildrose is comfortably ahead with between 27 and 44 seats, the NDP is more solidly placed to form the Official Opposition with 18 to 34 seats (and they could even conceivably win a plurality). The PC range tops out at 33, similar to the NDP, but bottoms out at just nine.

The Liberals stand at four seats and a range of four to nine, though that is likely to change this weekend once the official candidate list is out. The model currently assumes every party is running a full slate. The numbers will be adjusted once it is known exactly where each of the parties will have a candidate running.

Note that the projection now gives the other parties a range of zero to one seat, and 5% support. That seat belongs to the Alberta Party.

I'd also like to address the polls being done by 1ABVote (or 1Question, as they appear on Wikipedia), since I have received a lot of inquiries about them. I've spoken with Brian Singh, the man behind the polls, in the past, and I don't doubt that his polls are genuine. But this site does not and never has included polls commissioned by interest groups or political parties. As 1ABVote is an organization that is trying to unite progressives in Alberta, it does not qualify for inclusion in the aggregate. 

But let's get to the poll that was added to the aggregate this morning. It was done by Mainstreet Technologies and published by the Calgary Herald.

Mainstreet was last in the field on April 7. It recorded no change for Wildrose since then, as the party remained in first with 31% support.

The NDP picked up four points and was second with 30%, while the PCs were down three points to 24%.

The Liberals were down two points to 10%, and the Alberta Party was up two points to 5%. The number of undecideds ticked down by a point to 23%.

Turnout is unlikely to boost the Tories, as Mainstreet finds only Wildrose gets a boost among those who say they are certain to vote. The party is bumped up to 35% among these Albertans, with the NDP dropping to 29% and the PCs holding at 24%.

The poll showed the Tories have weakness not only in voting intentions but on the issues, as they led in none of the categories investigated by Mainstreet.

Wildrose led on the issues of taxes and healthcare, while the NDP was ahead on the environment. The two parties were nearly tied on education, and the only three-way race was on job creation. That the PCs could not poll better than Wildrose or do much better than the NDP on this issue is particularly problematic for them.

At the regional level, the race is closest in Calgary. Wildrose was narrowly ahead with 29%, while the Tories were down six points to 27% in the city. The NDP was up to 25%, the Liberals to 13%.

The New Democrats dominated in Edmonton with 51%, followed at a distance by the Tories at 21%, the Liberals at 13%, and Wildrose at 10%. There were only marginal changes since April 7.

Wildrose held a wide lead in the rest of Alberta with 39%, with the NDP gaining six points to surge into second place at 26%. The Tories were down to 23%, while the Liberals were down six points to just 7%.

These polls still boggle the mind, but it is hard to deny that they are pointing to something very real in Alberta. The real question is whether it will endure until May 5, of course. It would also be useful to have a few more polls from more established outfits to help confirm the trend.

61 comments:

  1. Be something if right wing Alberta elects left wing NDP. Still think the NDP form a strong opposition there but more importantly we are seeing the end of a political dynasty in this country as the PC's looked doomed in Alberta. If they do lose Greg Selinger's NDP becomes the longest serving party for a government in the country.

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    1. But for the Manitoba NDP to surpass the Alberta Tories in total longevity, they'd need to stay in power until 2043.

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    2. If polls are to be believed the good people of Manitoba look eager to end their NDP government long before 2043, most likely sometime between Autumn 2015 and September 2016.

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    3. Eric has them poised to get their second best result ever in Alberta. Definitely something. By definition not unprecedented. What makes it more interesting is the division on the centre and right.

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  2. Hello Éric,

    I´d like to ask you about the cause of the PC meltdown in Alberta. As far as I know (I´m not a Canadian) AB is a conservative stronghold. Is Wildrose a product of PC wrongdoing in AB after so many years in office or there are any other factors? I guess that most of the people that is going to vote for Wildrose will support Harper later this year.
    Could this NDP momentum (if sustained till May) be a factor in the federal elections. Thanks

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    1. The Alberta Progressive Conservatives are the longest serving government anywhere in the Western world, and when they first took over, they did so by supplanting a right-leaning government.

      Wildrose is definitely a result of conservative minded voters getting fed up with their party of choice, but can’t stomach the idea of voting NDP or Liberal. Think of it as the provincial equivalent of the Reform party showed up on the federal scene to replace the federal Progressive Conservatives as the main right leaning party.

      As for the NDP momentum, there may be some federal momentum, but that is far from certain. Provincial and federal politics don't have has much overlap as you'd expect. For example, the NDP was the government in Saskatchewan for many years, but many of the NDP supporters voted Reform federally. We saw a similar trend here in British Columbia when we had an NDP government in the 1990s.

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    2. The PCs have been returning to their centrist roots since the mid 2000s, irritating right-wing conservatives who want to go back to the days to deep budgets cuts in the 1990s. Ralph Klein, the hero to the right in Alberta, lost his hard edge after he conquered the provinces debt and the Treasury was flooding with oil revenue. He increased spending.

      He retired in 2006 and a centrist from rural mother Alberta, Ed Stelmach, shockingly won the leadership election of Klien's former minister of Finance and a prominent member if the PCs tight-wing. Stelmach took a more progressive approach and also raised the royalties the provincial government charges petroleum companies to extract oil from the province. This move, though popular with the public, agree the party's right-wing and it's financial backers in the Calgary oil industry, which led to the formation and fiancing of the Wildrose Party.

      Slemach retired in 2011 and another member of the party's progressive wing, Allison Redford, was able to, like Stlemach, defeat a high-profile frontrunner firm the Klien era at the leadership convention. Her premiership, along with the large deficits the province had been running since the Great Recession, fuller the Wildrose Party and made them real contenders in the 2012 election.

      The PCs were looming like they would lose the election, but, based in the advice of Redford's chief if staff, Stephen Carter, they party shifted it campaign narrative to the left to appeal to Liberal, and NDP voters. The Wildrose was hurt by a few social conservative outbursts for some of their candidates late in the camping, which the party leader refused to condemn. Liberal, and to a lesser extent NDP, support shifted to the PCs in an effort to prevent a Wildrose government and because the PCs appealed to centrist and left-leaning sensibilities with Redford as leader. The PCs won a majority.

      Reford pissed off left-leaning voters by being more conservative than progressive, and angered rught-leaning voters by continuing to run deficits. In 2014, she angered everybody with lavish and illegal expense claims. The party forced her out and held yet another leadership convention.

      This time, the frontrunner, former federal Conservative Jim Prentice won in a landslide. He was an outsider, a centrist Conservative with no livolvemnet in past provincial governments. Initially, he appealed to right-wingers and mage to get most of the Wildrose caucus to join the PC Party, including their leader. Most people assumed the Wildrose was finished and the PC, under Prentice, were unstoppable. Then came the huge drop in the price if oil and the budget.

      With the province facing down a recession and provincial oil revenues in the tank, Prentice presented a buget that was both progressive and conservative. conservative. It cut spending and raised taxes significantly. However, instead of appealing to all as a compromise, it was seen as too conservative to the left, and too progressive to the right. It re-invigitated the opposition parties, including the Wildrose, who just elected a new leader, a former federal conservative who actually worked with Prentice, thus month

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    3. It's been probably 15 years since the PCs have done even a passably good job of governing, but Albertans didn't see the other parties as viable options until now.

      Notley's charisma (and lack of obvious crazy) gives her party instant legitimacy that no party to the left of the PCs has had since the Liberals were led by Laurence Decore (in the 1990s). The next best opposition leader since then was probably NDP leader Raj Pannu, but his obvious friendship with Premier Ralph Klein was kind of odd.

      Wildrose was too young a party for Albertans to trust it last time, I think, despite their charismatic leader. Also, Wildrose then (and probably now) was an awkward coalition of social conservatives, fiscal conservatives, populists, and libertarians. That the leader (Danielle Smith) was clearly a member of one of those factions (the libertarians) gave the party a somewhat confused public image. Brian Jean is doing a much better job of leading the whole party, I think.

      To your second question, yes, I would expect Wildrose supporters to support Harper. I would expect them to be even more stalwart supporters of Harper than PC supporters are.

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    4. good summary, terrible spelling.

      did you type this on a phone?

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    5. Glacier, that's surely an exageration. Off the top of my head Castro's Cuba has served continually since 1959.

      Jordan, please, please, please, proof read.

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    6. Great post Jordan.

      I'm a crap speller too don't worry, just a quick proof read would help but it looks more like your were using your phone to post.

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    7. Mapleson, By Western world, I'm talking about western democracies. The CBC provided this stat the other day.

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    8. The People's Republic of China-Communist since, 1949!

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    9. Any more caveats you want to put on it? Do you have a reference for the CBC stat, because all I can find is "longest in Canada". I think I'll look into this more.

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    10. As far as I know they don't record all newscasts from the radio. I will post a reference if I can find one.

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  3. I am in a state of shock. Really. I want it to be May 5 NOW!

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  4. PCs coming in third in the popular vote? I'll believe it when I see it.

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  5. If the Tories are defeated, they, will have been in power for just short of 16,000 days.

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  6. My take, for what it's worth: most of the undecided are probably PC voters. The question now is 'Do they vote?' Expect an onslaught of PC attacks against the WR and NDP with their $ in the final three weeks all with the purpose of bring some of the undecideds their way. Even in the low 30s the PCs could pull it off due to the weaknesses of WR (lack of organization outside their rural strongholds) and NDP (vote too concentrated in Edmonton). Their (PC) path to victory is now very narrow: winning most of Calgary, some of the rural ridings (north of Red Deer) and a few Edmonton seats, but I wouldn't count them out yet (getting to 44).

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    1. It would be interesting to see a breakdown of "undecided" into "not voting" and "don't know who to vote for".

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  7. With the aggregate, my model gives:

    45 WR
    21 PC
    16 NDP
    5 ALP

    That's a Wildrose majority right here. Of course, a lot of those races are tight, so I wouldn't call it a done deal, but with the PC almost 5,5% under the WR, the latter wins a lot of the rural ridings. The NDP, while close to WR, is so concentrated in Edmonton that they don't offer a lot of competition.

    And with the Mainstream poll, I have:

    45 WR
    19 NDP
    18 PC
    5 ALP

    Almost the same scenario as above, but with the NDP supplanting the PC as the official opposition. I guess this poll is good news for both WR and NDP (the former for having a majority government and the latter to make it to official opposition status), but disastrous to the PC for not only failing to win another election, but not even finishing second.

    This looks like it will be an interesting race after all!

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  8. Looking at Eric's riding projections is really fascinating. If the PCs go down even a few points further in rural Alberta the projections give a lot of their rural seats to the NDP. My old riding of Grande Prairie-Wapiti is essentially a statistical tie between the PCs, Wildrose and NDP. all around 30%. There is no way the NDP competes in a lot of these seats that they're given such big numbers in though.

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    1. I haven't looked at all the ridings, but for Grande Prairie-Wapiti, I have WR as the winner with 30,9%, the PCs second with 29,9% and the NDP in third with 26,6%. Generally speaking, compared to Eric's, my model favours Wildrose and has the NDP at a disadvantage. So in rural Alberta, the NDP isn't as competitive.

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  9. When I lived in Alberta (I don't recommend it) I was friends with a number of Wildrose supporters and volunteers. Wildrose's greatest obstacle to victory is their lack of organization or ground game. In 2012 one of my friends estimated Wildrose only had a substantial organization in about 30 ridings-primarily in Southern Alberta and Calgary. I expect the situation has improved but, what on paper looks to be a seven point lead over the PCs may in fact disguise a much closer race-a race that if my assumption is correct would make it possible for the NDP to be in the lead (although I must admit I am skeptical of this). The lack of organization also is likely to impact the NDP-they don't have much local or constituency organization outside of Edmonton except for some pockets; Lethbridge, Calgary- Hawkwood et al.

    All-in-all, I think we'll see a change of government on May 5th but, I would expect both popular vote and seats for the NDP and Wildrose will be lower than projected and slightly better results for the PCs. The Liberals should re-gain, Calgary-Mountainview, Calgary-Buffalo and Edmonton-Centre, I don't think they will retain Edmonton-Meadowlark which if the NDP remains above 50% in Edmonton will go NDP.

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    1. I credited their lack of organization as a primary cause of the floor crossings. I've seen how that party is run from the inside, and it's not good.

      That said, neither was the Reform Party/Canadian Alliance, but they did pretty well.

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    2. Interesting that party organization or lack thereof would have such a dramatic political impact. In a "normal" election where a party looks set to win a majority poor organization probably can be overcome through sheer volume of votes, in tight races like Alberta the ground game may well prove crucial between a plurality and finishing as Official Opposition or even third place. That said the PCs are the only party in Alberta with fully fledged local organizations in all 87 constituencies, I don't expect those local constituencies associations will save them from the on-coming storm.

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    3. None of the minority parties have much of a ground game except for the governing party. This is a typical phenomena in modern politics as fewer people are interested and fewer vote. The ground game of the WR is suspect in Urban Edmonton ridings and the NDP is non existent outside of Edmonton. Even the few mentioned by you have a very limited ground game. The liberals are non existent in almost every riding and will be lucky to hold onto the three seats you mention. However for a ground game all you need is to be able to to do is nominate a candidate get your signs up, have the candidate door knock and then rely on the provincial campaign. If you can do this anything can Happen. (IE Quebec NDP victory last federal election)

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  10. Isn't there an election going on in Prince Edward Island?

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    1. Pollsters don't seem to be aware of it.

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    2. To tie the two together, Shawn Driscoll, a PC candidate in PEI, has been asked to step down due to an outstanding arrest warrent in Alberta for a possible DUI.

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    3. Is it a surprise there are no polls given the population of the province is so small? Municipalities with larger populations often have no polling during elections

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  11. Eric, I am curious, what is the basis of predicting the Alberta Party will win Calgary Elbow?

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    1. The results of the by-election have been swung according to how the polls have shifted since then. In the case of Calgary Elbow, it has more to do with the PCs polling so poorly than the AP polling well.

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  12. "These polls still boggle the mind, but it is hard to deny that they are pointing to something very real in Alberta."

    Why do they boggle the mind? The Alberta NDP have won close to 30% of the vote before.

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    1. I dunno, has something to do with 44 years of PC victories.

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  13. I will help out Eric in the pollsters to explain how they were so far off when Prentice gets a solid majority.

    The polls were correct but more Conservative voters showed up to vote. This was because the polls acted as a political motivator to get out and vote to keep the NDP away from the public purse.

    In BC the polls drove the normal taxpayers to vote for the Liberals because the polls hammered home the idea that the NDP were going to get elected.

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    1. Why would they vote PC instead of Wildrose if Wildrose is virtually tied for 1st?

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    2. BCVoR,

      I believe your prediction could turn out to be correct but, there is something in the air this time that makes me think a new government is a very real possibility.

      I agree that when the NDP comes to power they often spend like drunken sailors and are not known for their fiscal or financial acumen. However, the threat of the Socialist hordes at the gates who if let in will put the Province into deficit rings hollow in Alberta as the Tories have done a very fine job of spending surpluses and then some for the past decade and poorly investing the returns-So, if a voter wants to keep the NDP away from the public purse (a noble cause to be sure) that same voter probably also has misgivings about letting the Tories back in power and continuing their spendthrift ways. Alot of those voters don't think they have a choice-they'll vote Wildrose.

      I partially agree with what you say about B.C. a significant number of the silent majority did turn out to vote to prevent the Socialists ruining the Province, but, I don't think that fully explains the polls that gave Adrian Dix and the champagne Socialists a 10 per centage point lead. To me such a discrepancy is more likely to be the result of a methodological error, pollsters confused the general population with likely voters and as the 2013 BC general election and other elections have shown (including Alberta general elections) likely voters are not synonymous with the general population.

      In any case I very much doubt Alberta will wake up on May 6th with a NDP government of any stripe. Far more likely they'll awake to either a PC or Wildrose majority or minority government.

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    3. The NDP have tabled more surplus budgets across Canada in the past 35 years than the other parties.

      I say this as a Liberal supporter.

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    4. Capilano, "I agree that when the NDP comes to power they often spend like drunken sailors and are not known for their fiscal or financial acumen."

      This is sheer propaganda. NDP governments have a better record than any other party for balanced budgets, but because they also manage to implement programmes that promote economic equality, the corporate parties and the corporate press continually declare them to be fiscally irresponsible. It's a complete fiction that serves the special interests of business and the wealthy at the expense of everyone else.

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    5. Hurtin, Absolutely correct. Here's the proof.

      Federal Department of Finance report covering all budgets (federal, provincial, and territorial) from 1980 to 2013.

      NDP
      Years in surplus: 44.9%
      Number of budgets: 69
      Budgets in deficit: 38

      Conservative Party
      Years in surplus: 40.8%
      Number of budgets: 184
      Budgets in deficit: 109

      Parti Québecois
      Years in surplus: 26.7%
      Number of budgets: 15
      Budgets in deficit: 11

      Liberal Party
      Years in surplus: 25.0%
      Number of budgets: 116
      Budgets in deficit: 87

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    6. And, unlike the Conservatives, the NDP has balanced budgets while increasing economic equality and extending and introducing government services (like universal health care, etc.)

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    7. chimurenga - There might be a selection bias in those numbers. Perhaps NDP governments are more likely to be elected when there is no deficit, or when the economy is stronger. And then when things get worse, they vote another way.

      We'd need a significantly deeper analysis to extract meaningful information here.

      It is interesting how much worse than both the NDP and Conservatives the Liberals look on your numbers, though.

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    8. @Hurtin Albertan-

      I did not do the work (and neither did you with your blanket statements) but I would venture to say that the NDP balanced budgets would have been dependent on huge federal transfer payments.

      Would be nice to have a table with balanced budgets by party by year that included the equalization payment.

      Did some googling but that sort of data appears to be well hidden.

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    9. @chimurenga

      Balanced budget source please.

      Even a list of NDP provincial governments would be helpful.

      Pretty sure that ALL the Manitoba/Sask NDP budgets would have equalization payments as a significant portion of their revenue as the NDP were not able to raise the fiscal capacity of their province to the Canadian average.

      Saying the NDP has the best record for balanced budgets is like saying the Green party has never delivered a deficit budget.

      List of NDP balanced budgets please

      It was also discovered, shortly after the election, that the balanced budgets for the 1995–96 and 1996–97 fiscal years on which Clark had campaigned were not, in fact, balanced but actually small deficits of approximately $100 million. This was termed the "fudge-it" budget fiasco. Further, large debt was shifted onto Crown Corporations so as to create a perception of "surpluses

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    10. The stats regarding balanced budgets by party are questionable because the numbers are taken out of their economic context. The NDP for example ran deficit budgets in B.C. even while we had strong economic growth whereas, Gordon Campbell ran surpluses even in times of low-growth and recession.

      It's a good point BCVoR raises regarding equalisation; the raising of fiscal capacity in "have" provinces will increase the revenues of "have nots" provinces through equalisation-can one really count those budgets as being "balanced" by whatever government is in power in the "have not" provinces?

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    11. I love that Ira tries to shoot down the stats by suggesting that NDP governments have had an unfair advantage balancing their budgets because they enjoyed good economic times, while BCVoR tries to shoot down the stats by suggesting that NDP governments had an unfair advantage balancing their budgets because they were poor.

      The information comes from the Department of Finance and their Fiscal Reference Tables. (https://www.fin.gc.ca/frt-trf/2013/frt-trf-13-eng.pdf)

      BCVoR, your analogy, "saying the NDP has the best record for balanced budgets is like saying the Green party has never delivered a deficit budget" is a false analogy. The Green Party has never governed, but the NDP has done, and delivered 69 budgets between 1980 and 2013. The NDP’s record is clear, and clearly better than those of the other governing parties, as shown by the Department of Finance figures.

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    12. chirumenga,

      The BC NDP Do spend like drunken sailors and expect to be judge on a different set of rules! For example, the last NDP Government spent a billion on the Millenium Skytrain line on a route rejected by all the transit authorities and planners as being unsuitable and in the wrong place. However, it did go through a slew of NDP marginal constituencies. Now of course the next BC government must clean up the mess by building yet another Skytrain line-the Evergreen line- for a cost of a few hundred million not including additional bus services. Who can forget the fast ferries? or a host of other misappropriations.

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    13. The raw NDP numbers are margially better than the Tory numbera, but as both BCVoR and I pointed out, those numbers alone don't support any conclusion. There's simply not enough information there.

      It's possible, for example, that the Liberals have been the best economic stewards historically, even thought they look worst in your data.

      I wasn't trying to suggest any conclusion. I was trying to discourage all of them. The data you've presented is not, on its own, useful.

      The data support no conclusion.

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    14. Chirumenga,

      Firstly, the report does not from what I can see (perhaps you could provide a page number to cite specific references) present statistics relating to NDP, Conservative and Liberal governments. Secondly, since, the report only examines the time period between 1990-91-2012-2013 for the provinces and territories it is incapable of presenting the information you claim it holds such as; number of budgets and years in deficit. I am a little confused is there a second part of the report that you have forgotten to cite?

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    15. So facts you don't agree with are wrong, I understand, you just needed to say that no run around.

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    16. DCMOJY,

      No facts that can not be proven must be taken as false or unreliable-it's called empiricism-its been around for a long time and it is one of many theory on knolwdge-that socialists have no understanding of knowledge or even how one acquires it is no surprise to me.

      I did not write chirumenga's facts are "wrong" I ask for more information! On the face of it I can not find the information chirumenga purports to have gathered from the link he provided. It is a little too early to claim as gospel the NDP are the best fiscal managers in Canada-I like most Canadians will believe it when we see it and having lived through a couple NDP governments-I sure didn't see it then!

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    17. chimurenga

      Thanks for the link to the budget info

      Your great NDP budgeting % gets thrown off by the extremely poor record of the Atlantic provinces in budgeting and the NDP not being able to get elected there.

      If they did get elected they would have deficit budgets the same as the liberals and the PCs.

      Off topic:

      Kind of interesting that there are no political movements that rise out of Atlantic Canada.

      They don't even accept the NDP and Green as reasonable alternatives.

      They are stuck in time with the liberals versus the PCs.

      Out West when things aren't going the way we want we just start up a new party. Along with the Reform/Alliance /CPC, CCF/NDP we kick-started the Wildrose, the Social Credit, and the Saskatchewan parties.

      Atlantic Canada has had generational problems and does not get motivated to start a party based upon a political solution.

      Quebec is a hotbed for political start ups and Ontario just wants to be left alone as the power centre of Canada

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    18. @Capilano Dunbar

      "...that socialists have no understanding of knowledge or even how one acquires it is no surprise to me."

      Nice generalization. I though that someone (or maybe even several people) on the right had made un-verified claims before, although perhaps I am mistaken.

      By the way, I might be labelled a "socialist" by some, although I wouldn't necessarily call myself socialist. I am also a biomedical scientist with a PhD, working at a well respected private research institute, so I think I know something about "knowledge" and how one acquires it, probably more so than many. The point is, generalizations such as your are, simply put, stupid, and do little to advance your point.

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    19. "They don't even accept the NDP and Green as reasonable alternatives."

      In the recent New Brunswick election, a Fredericton riding elected a Green Party candidate as their MLA. Also, the NDP were the governing party in Nova Scotia from 2009 to 2013.

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    20. I can only shake my head at the power of pure belief without reason... The commitment to the myth of Con/Lib "fiscal responsibility" is remarkable, regardless of facts to the contrary.

      If you want the rest of the info I referred to, do what I did and look on the Dept. of Finance website. It's all there, including the figures for 1980-1990 - you just have to look. Meanwhile, I'd love to see the same level of skepticism brought to bear on some of the assertions made by the Conservatives of Liberals and their supporters. You folks are seriously flailing about trying to cast doubt on reports researched and published by the federal government's own Department of Finance and Stats Canada. That takes some gumption. No sense, but gumption.

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    21. The reason the liberals look worse than the NDP and Conservatives is that they tend to be the worst of both worlds. The NDP spends likes drunken sailors, but they are also not afraid to raise taxes to pay the bills. The Cons cut taxes like drunken sailors, but they are also aren't afraid to cut spending to make up the difference. The Liberals on the other hand try to appease the right and left by spending more and taxing less at the same time. Yes, yes, there are probably more exceptions to the rule than not, but you get the general idea.

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  14. Main Street thinks con voters will either move to wildrose or vice versa to block the ndp because they are afraid of them ( conventional wisdom) . But it looks to me from the polls that cons libs and undecided are moving to the ndp as their best bet to block wildrose because they're more afraid of THEM!

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    1. I think the movement towards the NDP is due to a desire for change than fear of Wildrose winning. The PC's won't be able to use that card this time.

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    2. Indeed. According to Forum, "Close to one quarter of past PC voters will vote NDP this time around (22%)".

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  15. Jim Prentice is more vulnerable in this election than Alison Redford was in 2012. Redford was seen as a fresh, dynamic and different candidate to a portion of the electorate.

    On the other hand, Prentice has a "more of the same vibe" to him. Voters may still give Prentice a majority if they feel it would be better to stick with the devil they know rather supporting an unknown quantity in the Wildrose or NDP.

    I do not think there will be much strategic voting this election. The only exception will be progressives that usually vote Liberal will NDP this time.

    Neither the NDP nor Wildrose is campaigning in any way or form that will make them seem outside of the mainstream. Both are running rather sensible center-left and center-right campaigns.

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