Wednesday, June 29, 2016

In Canadian politics the leader of a party sets the tone and direction of the political party. When there is no permanent leader the party is adrift and this is not good for Canadian politics.

The Conservatives are not choosing a new leader till May 27th 2017, 11 months from now and more than 18 months after Stephen Harper resigned.

The NDP is waiting even longer. The party will not have a new leader till October 2017 which is almost two years after the last election. The NDP has not even finalized the rules for their leadership race.

Without leaders for the two primary opposition parties there is very little serious parliamentary opposition to the Liberal government. A weak opposition makes for a weak government. Governments need a force within parliament that holds their feet to the fire.

More concerning about the leadership races is that because they are so long there are very few candidates in the race yet. Not only do the parties have no leader, they have no serious candidates to give anyone a sense of where the parties might be headed.

Among the Conservatives the gulf between the potential direcitons for the party are huge. The party could become very libertarian, socially conservative or Trump-like populist.  The Conservatives have three candidates so far but none of are ones I would call serious heavy weights.   The best known is Maxime Bernier and if he were to win the Conservatives would be a very different party than under Harper, it would be tending towards libertarianism.   

Among the NDP the leader will define if the party is a pragmatic social democratic party trying to be government or a significantly left of centre party that is there to raise issues but not govern.  At the moment there is a single candidate in the race, Cheri DiNovo.   If she were to win it would be a move to the left by the NDP.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Nelson Creston - a possible battle ground riding in 2017

On the surface Nelson Creston looks like a safe NDP riding but that is not the whole picture.    This is an area where the Greens have a reasonable amount of support and could threaten to win the seat in 2017

In every election other than 2009 the Green support in Nelson Creston we much better than
overall provincial level of support for the party

In 1986 the NDP had lost the seat to Social Credit

Howard Dirks, the Socred MLA 1986-91 now ran as a Liberal and his support remained static from 1991
The 1996 result was by far the best results for any Green in Canada to date
Corky Evans lost but in relative terms he did not much better than most of the NDP in 2001
The Greens put a lot of energy into trying to get Collen McCrory elected

Best 2005 come back by a New Democrat

Greens put very little effort into the election

Greens managed to break 20% but spent a lot less money than the NDP or the Liberals
What happens in 2017 if they spend what they are allowed?

Current boundaries of the riding

Friday, June 24, 2016

BC Election 2017: Looking at the Okanagan Shuswap

I want to look at all the regions of the province over the next few months as a baseline of what is going on before the campaign really gets underway.

In this region four the the MLAs were elected in 2013 for the first time, two in 2009 and Christy Clark was elected in a by-election in Westside Kelowna in 2013.   Since 1996 the Liberals have won every seat in this region and I do not expect this to change in 2017.

Regional Results from 1991-2013
2013 Liberals 51.1% NDP 32.0% Cons     10.1% Greens  4.6%
2009 Liberals 42.4% NDP 31.9% Cons     11.9% Greens 11.9%
2005 Liberals 47.1% NDP 36.5% Greens    8.1% Cons    4.0%
2001 Liberals 63.1% NDP 15.1% Greens    9.8% UNity   8.2%
1996 Liberals 40.3% NDP 29.7% Reform   16.4% PDA    10.6%
1991 Socred   34.1% NDP 32.8% Liberals 31.8%
2009 and 2013 the Liberals won 7, 1996 to 2005 the Liberals won 6, 1991 NDP won 3, Socreds won 2 and Liberals 1

Riding Results for any candidate that got more than 10% of the vote
Boundary Similkameen - Linda Larson MLA elected in 2013 for the first time
2013 Liberals 46.6% NDP    39.0%
2013 Liberals 46.0% NDP    39.4% redist to 2017 boundaries
2009 Liberals 37.5% NDP    32.9% Cons     20.2%
1996 Liberals 38.9% NDP    38.2% Reform   15.4%
1991 NDP      48.8% Socred 25.8% Liberals 25.0%
2001 and 2005 riding did not exist

Penticton - Dan Ashton MLA elected in 2013 for the first time
2013 Liberals 45.4% NDP      40.3%
2009 Liberals 44.0% NDP      31.2% Greens 15.7%
As Penticton Okanagan Valley
2005 Liberals 50.2% NDP      37.5%
2001 Liberals 67.2% NDP      15.6% Greens 14.2%
as Okanagan Penticton
1996 Liberals 42.8% NDP      37.0% Reform 12.0%
1991 NDP      34.8% Liberals 32.9% Socred 30.5%

Kelowna West (formerly Westside Kelowna) - Christy Clark MLA - elected in a 2013 by -election
2013 by Liberals 62.7% NDP 29.7%
2013    Liberals 58.1% NDP 30.8% Cons 11.1%
2009    Liberals 53.3% NDP 29.2%
As Okanagan Westside
2005    Liberals 54.4% NDP 30.8% Green 10.1%
2001    Liberals 68.1% NDP 15.2%
before 2001 there was no riding like this

Kelowna Mission - Steve Thomson MLA first elected in 2009
2013 Liberals 56.9% NDP 25.8% Cons  12.7%
2009 Liberals 53.9% NDP 26.1% Cons  11.9%
2005 Liberals 53.7% NDP 31.8% Green 12.9%
2001 Liberals 64.6% NDP 12.9% Green 10.9%
There was no comparable riding before 2001

Kelowna Lake Country - Norm Letnik MLA first elected in 2009
2013 Liberals 56.8% NDP 24.8% Cons  11.0%
2009 Liberals 52.1% NDP 26.6% Cons  11.4%
2005 Liberals 50.4% NDP 30.4% Green 10.5%
2001 Liberals 63.2% NDP 13.9% Green 11.7%
no equivalent riding existed before 2001

Vernon Monashee - Eric Foster MLA first elected in 2013
2013 Liberals 46.3% NDP 34.2% Cons     11.7%
2009 Liberals 37.3% NDP 31.8% Green    16.7%
2005 Liberals 43.2% NDP 33.6% Cons     11.6%
2001 Liberals 56.5% NDP 14.4% Unity    13.1%
1996 Liberals 39.1% NDP 30.0% Reform   21.4%
1991 Scored   38.0% NDP 34.0% Liberals 26.7%

Shuswap - Greg Kyllo MLA first elected in 2013
2013 Liberals 47.9% NDP      29.6% Cons   12.9%
2009 Liberals 46.6% NDP      30.5% Green  11.0% Cons  10.3%
2005 Liberals 47.0% NDP      35.3%
2001 Liberals 56.3% NDP      16.5% Unity  12.4% Green 10.5%
1996 Liberals 34.6% NDP      31.4% Reform 22.6%
1991 NDP      35.5% Liberals 33.6% Socred 28.9%

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Graph of BC election results 1956-2013

Make what you wish of this

Could the NDP run a focused campaign in 2016 and pick up just enough seats to win?

In 1996 the NDP managed to have a focused campaign to hold enough seats to stay in power. They needed 38 seats and won 39.

Top 13 NDP Target Seats
4 lost to BC Liberals in 2013
Fraser Nicola
Delta North
Surrey Fleetwood
Port Moody Coquitlam
(the NDP also lost Chilliwack Hope to the Liberals, but that was with a victory of almost 20pp)

(pp= precentage points)
9 where NDP was within 10pp
Boundary Similkameen
Maple Rigde MIssion 
Maple Ridge Pitt Meadows
Surrey Guildford
Burnaby North
Vancouver Fraserview
North Vancouver Lonsdale
Courtenay Comox

Top 10 Liberal Target Seats
4 lost to the NDP
Burnaby Lougheed
Vancouver Point Grey
Vancouer Fairview
Saanich North and the Islands

6 where Liberals within 10pp
North Island
Cowichan Valley
Coquitlam Millardville
Burnaby Deer Lake
Burnaby Lougheed

Top 6 Green Target Seats and the margin they need to overcome

Saanich North and the Islands - 1.2pp
Victoria Beacon HIll - 15pp
Cowichan Valley - 21pp
Esquimalt Metchosin - 27pp
Nelson Creston - 30pp
Victoria Swan Lake - 31pp

NDP ad from the 1986 provincial election

All I can say is that this awful ad was not the worst part of the 1986 NDP campaign

The NDP went into 1986 being the odds on favorites to win the election.   Bill Bennett was a spent political force and the province was still angry about restraint.   But then Expo 86 happened and was success, the Socreds changed leaders to the charasmatic Bill Vander Zalm.  Meanwhile the NDP managed to run a campaign that seemed to be designed to drive the public away.  

The ad above is just one example of the campaign.    Meanwhile the leader Bob Skelly had a disasterous press conference at the start of the campaign and never recovered.  

In this election I was an active volunteer for the BC NDP because I was a fan of Bob Skelly.  I joined the NDP to vote for him the leadership race.

From Wikipedia


PartyParty leader# of
SeatsPopular vote
1983Elected% Change#%% Change
Social CreditBill Vander Zalm693547+34.3%954,51649.32%-0.44%
New DemocraticBob Skelly692222-824,54442.60%-2.34%
LiberalArt Lee55---130,5056.74%+4.05%
Progressive ConservativeVacant[1]12---14,0740.73 %-0.43%
Green 9---4,6600.24%0.05%
    Libertas 1*-*1,5520.08%*
People's Front 8*-*1,5020.08%*
Communist 3---7220.03%-0.02%
Libertarian 3*-*3410.02%*
Western Canada ConceptDoug Christie1---3220.02%-0.84%
New Republic 1*-*2450.01%*
Source: Elections BC

Sunday, June 12, 2016

10 Longest Serving BC Premiers - #9 is Christy Clark but no NDP premiers make the list

The list

10 - Simon Fraser Tolmie Consevative 1928-33
9 - Christy Clark Liberal 2011-current
8 - George Anthony Walkem non-partisan 1874-76, 1878-82
7 - John Hart Colition (Liberal) 1941-47
6 - Duff Pattullo Liberal 1933-41
5 - John Oliver Liberal 1918-27
4 - Gordon Campbell Liberal 2001-11
3 - Bill Bennett Social Credit 1975-86
2 - Richard McBride Conservative 1903-1912
1 - WAC Bennett Social Credit 1952-1972