Prime Minister Stephen Harper remains significantly ahead of the pack but the story is Mr. Rae, who has now usurped his Official Opposition rival for second place on the Nanos Research leadership index. …
Despite Ms. Turmel’s low leadership score, Mr. Nanos said the good news for the NDP is that it is holding on to “their 30 per cent support” across the country. In addition, the NDP continues to be strong in Quebec. The party holds a majority of the province’s 75 seats and is at 45.1 per cent support compared to the Conservatives, Liberals and Bloc Quebecois, who are in a three-way race for the bottom with 15.1 per cent support, 18.2 per cent and 15.2 per cent respectively.
Meanwhile – and not surprisingly – Mr. Harper’s numbers have increased on the East Cost. The Prime Minister now has the support of 39.6 per cent of Atlantic Canadians, up from 31.1 per cent in the previous poll a month ago. Mr. Nanos suspects the increase is likely due to the awarding of multi-billion-dollar federal shipbuilding contracts, the largest of which went to a Halifax shipyard.
As long as the NDP holds onto its Quebec support, I expect them to hold onto being in the top two. As long as the CPC holds onto its Ontario support, I expect them (us) to hold onto the national lead (and stay in majority territory).
This should hold steady until the opposition parties choose their permanent leaders. And I bet Rae finds a way to stay around as Liberal leader…
Could they really choose Gilles Duceppe as premier?
Seriously? At a time when sovereignty-association is at thirty-year lows in the polls?
Those surveys suggest that the PQ under Marois would come in third place behind the Charest Liberals.
However with Duceppe, the PQ would be ahead in voter surveys, according to the Leger and Leger internet survey of 1,067 people.
According to the poll, Duceppe would attract 37 percent of the vote, compared to 25 percent for Legault and 23 percent for Charest’s Liberals. …
The same poll revealed that 36 percent of respondents supported sovereignty, the lowest total in many years.
What do I think?
I think Quebec separatism just isn’t going to happen. Yes, we may end up with some “national unity” crises at various points, and yes, we can still fumble the file. However, (1) there’s no actual reason for Quebec to leave, and (2) I don’t think they want to.
I think the 2008 Parliamentary Crisis was an inflection point — it was when the population of Quebec had it demonstrated to them just how much the rest of the country hated the Bloc Quebecois.
That’s why we saw the switch to the NDP at the federal level, and that’s why I expect that support to be at least somewhat durable — I expect also to see the Tories make some inroads on the Island of Montreal and in Quebec City (again!), but the lion’s share of NDP seats should stay NDP. (Which, incidentally, SHOULD cement the NDP as one of the top two parties in the Parliament of Canada — this has big implications for the future of the country as a whole.)
That being said, while Quebeckers will no longer gratuitously stick it to the rest of Canada in the federal parliament, that by no means indicates that Quebecois nationalism is a spent force. On the contrary: the desire to protect the French fact and to pursue their own social model is as strong as ever.
Does that mean Premier Duceppe?
Would it be better than Premier Legault?
More honest, maybe.
Or can Premier Charest pull yet another rabbit out of his hat?
It sure will be interesting to watch, won’t it?
What will happen?
Update: I want to add some polling data here, too.
- 63 per cent are proud to be both Quebecers and Canadians and 63 per cent say federalism has more advantages than disadvantages; 71 per cent say the sovereignty debate is outdated (up from 58 per cent in a similar poll in April 2010).
- 80 per cent believe the repatriation of the Constitution in 1982 was a good thing and 88 per cent think the federal Charter of Rights and Freedoms was a good thing; 75 per cent of French Quebecers think the Charter’s protection of Quebec’s English minority is good.
- 31 per cent say the Quebec gov-ernment was right to reject the Constitution, and 32 per cent say the Canadian government was right to proceed without the agreement of Quebec.
These are just as much the children of Pierre Elliott Trudeau as of Rene Levesque.
Option Two seems rather anti-democratic:
All of that complexity that is designed is so much chaff, thrown into the eyes of the public to conceal the hard reality of what is actually being proposed:
Europe is about to create a new central borrowing power to assume responsibility for the debts of the weaker borrowing countries. To service these assumed debts, the new central borrowing power must gain a new taxing power. To prevent the problem from recurring, the weaker borrowing countries must surrender some of their spending powers.
Does that sound too technical? OK, put it more simply:
Europe is about to create a new super-government — and Greece, Italy, Spain and the others are about to be demoted to provincial or state local governments, subordinated to this super-government.
What Europe must do to save the euro is very similar to what Alexander Hamilton did in the United States in the 1790s to create the dollar. The new federal government assumed responsibility for the Revolutionary War debts of the former 13 colonies. The new federal government also took control of what was then the most important revenue source: Customs duties. The states were relieved of their debts in exchange for surrendering some of their taxing power.
But there is one huge difference between Europe today and the United States in the 1790s. The new American super-government was elected. The new European super-government won’t be. Americans went into their arrangement with their eyes open, understanding the implications of their choice. European voters, by contrast, are being told that they are making a merely financial decision. As with the original euro decision itself, the true implications of the rescue plan will not be revealed until it is too late to reverse them.
What of the New Class?
And then… that’s more or less it — a field of nine candidates, of varying levels of seriousness, all vying for three-and-a-half years at Stornoway.
Whom do we see as the early frontrunner? Topp? Mulcair?
Can some polling firm start polling NDP members now?
In light of all these NDP leadership candidates and (next year) Liberal leadership candidates announcing their desire not to run against their fellow party colleagues, but against Stephen Harper, it’s useful once again to look at Michael Ignatieff’s campaign launch in 2006.
Note that Ignatieff was a better public speaker at the start of his political career than he was at the end of it.
Six months after the landmark election of a Conservative majority on May 2, which finally gave Prime Minister Stephen Harper a firm and unfettered grasp on the levers of power in Ottawa, critics claim the Harperization of Canada is in full swing. …
It’s no hidden agenda foisted on an unwitting public; the national makeover is going pretty much according to the Conservatives’ well-publicized plans — though faster and more forcefully, perhaps, than was expected in the wake of that spring vote six months ago Wednesday, when a suddenly robust NDP and its superstar leader seemed certain to mount a formidable (if ultimately outnumbered) Opposition to Harper’s Conservatives. …
But do the measures already implemented or set in motion in the half-year since May 2 amount to something more than the sum of the individual parts of the Conservative agenda? Is Canada undergoing a truly transformative shift in character and values — a root-and-branch supplanting of one kind of country for another?
In short, are we witnessing the final eclipse of Trudeau’s Canada and the rise of Harper Nation?
Well, maybe not so much:
Universite de Moncton professor Donald Savoie, an expert in politics and public administration, played down the notion that Harper’s Conservatives are rushing to create a profoundly changed Canada — even if it’s warranted in some ways, he said.
“A different Canada will never emerge suddenly, quickly or radically. That is not the Canadian way,” he said. “But a new Canada is struggling to make its presence felt.”
Harper, he said, has long believed “in his bones” that the phrase “national policy” is a “code word for Ontario and Quebec.”
So the prime minister, said Savoie, will turn to regional interests in the West, East and North to help “define the new Canada. I think he will turn to the private sector to define the new Canada. And I think . . . he will look to new Canadians to define the new Canada.”
For those who lament such shifts in the Canadian political landscape, Savoie said — and such boilerplate Conservative policy initiatives as scrapping the wheat board and long-gun registry — democracy offers the prospect of future reversals.
“Six months ago, Canadians made a decision to give this party a majority government,” he said. “People who don’t agree with the policies? Well, they’ll have their chance again three and a half years from now.”
Well, Pearson never had a majority. And even Trudeau never won English Canada so decisively.
Diefenbaker and Mulroney did — but just once. Can Harper pull off a repeat performance?
Update: On CPAC, Coyne and Wells are guests on “Harper’s Canada: How Do You Like It So Far?“
Darned if I know if his rise is real.
But for Canadian readers, if you want an introduction to what Cain is like, here’s a good sample — his speech to the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in February 2011 in Washington DC.
That’s Cain speaking to the conservative base — his main audience.
Update: As Nate Silver, the New York Times’s polling guru, puts it, “Frankly, I think it is quite arrogant to say that the man leading in the polls two months before Iowa has no chance, especially given that there is a long history in politics and other fields of experts being overconfident when they make predictions.“
So… who knows.
But even if Cain doesn’t quite make it, I wouldn’t be stunned if Romney picked him to be his running-mate, if he came in a strong second.
Or vice versa.
Update the third: Profiles of Cain backers.
But who’d've thought that Herman Cain would become the Tea Party candidate?
One expert who isn’t afraid to admit the difficulty of figuring the odds on Cain is Nate Silver, wizard of political statistics at the New York Times. Examining the gap between the weak “fundamentals” of Cain’s campaign and his high poll numbers, Silver concluded that “there is either something fundamentally unusual about this year’s Republican nomination process, or perhaps that some sort of ‘new normal’ has been established and that the old rules of how you win a nomination no longer carry as much weight.” And as far as trying to predict the chances of Cain’s future success, Silver threw up his hands: “Not only do I not know how I would go about estimating the likelihood that Mr. Cain will win the Republican nomination — I’m not sure that there is a good way to do so at all.” In other words, Cain’s success represents a journey into uncharted political waters, like an ancient explorer sailing off toward the part of the map where the legend reads, “Here Be Dragons.”
Here be Dragons.
Don’t know how to figure it. I’m sticking with Romney, but this Cain thing is… well, we’re in strange times. Who knows what the Tea Party will do next?
Topp’s got more top endorsements.
NDP leadership contender Brian Topp has locked up more high-level support in British Columbia, the province that is home to one-third of the party membership and stands to have the loudest voice in the selection of Jack Layton’s replacement.
As two more MPs are set to launch their own leadership bids, Mr. Topp is solidifying his status as the front-runner in the race, unveiling the endorsements on Thursday of four Vancouver Island MLAs, including former B.C. NDP leader Carole James. He will travel into the B.C. interior on Friday, where he will unveil more support to build on previous endorsements from the party’s Surrey MLAs.
The backing is significant as provincial New Democrats are automatically members of the federal party and can vote in next year’s leadership vote. Mr. Topp, a long-time NDP strategist, has already obtained the support of former leader Ed Broadbent, former Saskatchewan premier Roy Romanow, major union leaders and five B.C. MPs, including deputy leader Libby Davies of Vancouver.
Will this become a coronation, or will there be some pushback?
This is kind of awesome.
Touring the Occupy Wall Street scene in New York with a sign that read “I Am the 1%, Let’s Talk,” Schiff spent more than three hours on the scene, explaining the difference between cronyism and capitalism, bailouts and balance sheets, and more.