I haven’t posted much lately. That isn’t to say things haven’t been happening.
We have a new premier in Ontario. She may even recall the legislature. We’ll see. Maybe Horwath will cut a deal, maybe we’ll have a spring election. May depend on whether or not Horwath calculates that Hudak can win a spring election.
Toronto still has a mayor.
Federally, it’s still Stephen Harper’s government. (I’d say Stephen Harper’s country, but the country is most emphatically not the government — that’s as true when I like the governing party as it is when I dislike the governing party.) Justin Trudeau still leads the Liberal race. Tom Mulcair bides his time and avoids pitfalls. (For what it’s worth, Harper is probably the best political analyst out there. He just uses his stuff for his own benefit, these days…)
All in all, we’re waiting.
Stateside, the gridlock of 2010-2012 persists into the 2012-2014 period.
Not much is changing there till the 2014 midterms, or possibly the 2016 presidential election…
Well, the president won.
I salute his campaign — they were absolutely brilliant at identifying and getting their voters out to the polls. Chicago decisively defeated Boston.
Before Hurricane Sandy, it might have been different — the popular vote was that close. And Governor Christie is now dead to us Republicans, as far as national ambitions go. But what happens, happens, and there’s no use crying over it.
Going forward, there’s something interesting to note.
In the elections for the House of Representatives, the Republicans lost eight seats but maintained a healthy majority.
There was a Democratic plurality of the national popular vote. This means less than one might mean, as there really aren’t serious Republican candidates for downtown congressional seats. But here’s a thought: the GOP won 48% of the vote, the Democrats won 49% of the vote, and the Libertarians won 1.2% of the vote.
Had it not been for the spoiler effect of Libertarian candidates, the Republicans probably would have picked up seats, not lost them, and would probably have won the popular vote.
I think this is significant. I think that this Reason magazine item pinpoints a good cleavage going forward.
Our “friends” on the left (concern trolls) suggest that the Republican Party has been TOO libertarian. Our friends on the libertarian side suggest that the Republican Party has not been libertarian enough.
I agree with the libertarian critique. The future of the Republican Party is not with George Bush-style “compassionate” conservatism, it is with the libertarian side of the Tea Party.
That’s the fight we’re going to have, and that’s where the action will be on the right. Should be fun to watch.
President Obama has his full eight years now. I think the people erred grievously by re-electing him, but we are where we are. Let’s make the most of it — we have a healthy House majority, we would have had a Senate majority had we not insisted on throwing away easily winnable seats, and we have a good base to build upon.
Go more libertarian, and engage with ethnic communities the way that Jason Kenney has done for the Conservative Party of Canada. (Do not, repeat, DO NOT pander. People can spot the difference between pandering and sincere engagement.)
This is not complicated. But it may be hard.
Suffice it to say, polls have shifted the president’s way since a week ago & my prediction below.
We’ll see what happens. Could go either way, could even still end up going the way I predicted, if Romney actually wins independent voters decisively.
Till tonight, this song seems apt.
Update, 1:45 PM: Win or lose, this piece reflects my view of the presidential campaign.
I say it’ll be Romney 338, Obama 200.
Does this 30-second ad look like an advertisement from a winning campaign?
Leads me to this conclusion.
And this, although I’m more like Ronald Reagan and think it’s bad luck to talk about the certainty of winning before it actually happens.
But wow, the president’s campaign has gotten smaller as E-day approaches. Kind of the opposite of what I think a campaign should do.
So yeah, last pre-second debate Gallup has Romney up 51-45 among likely voters, 48-46 among registered voters.
It’s pointed out over at National Review that “in the history of Gallup, no presidential candidate has ever been over 50 percent in mid-October and gone on to lose”.
So either Romney will manage that epic collapse, or he’s going to defeat Barack Obama on November 6th.
I think Obama’s still slightly favoured, even now.
But it’s still also lots of fun watching Andrew Sullivan melt down.
So yeah, 28%?
Le Parti québécois est aux portes du pouvoir, mais le courant souverainiste est clairement en perte de vitesse. Seulement 28% des gens voteraient Oui à un référendum proposant que le Québec devienne un pays souverain, un recul de huit points depuis le début de la campagne électorale. …
Dans son coup de sonde, CROP constate que le camp du Non ne gagne pas autant de terrain toutefois. On est passé de 60 à 62% depuis le début août, révèlent les données brutes. Ce sont les indécis qui ont pris du poids – ils étaient 4% au début du mois d’août, on en retrouve désormais 10% sur la question référendaire.
I hesitate to post something from Frum, but here’s why:
If Quebec breaks the fiscal union with Canada, it must for its own sake exit the currency union too. Which means that Quebeckers will awake the next day to huge depreciations of their salaries, benefits, and savings.
Quebecers know that, or anyway intuit it. The old promises of an easy separatism have been discredited. Separatism is now a hard path, involving great sacrifices, reduced standards of living, more work, and fewer social benefits — all at a time when PQ supporters yearn to hear a message of no sacrifices, improved standards of living, less work, and more social benefits. Which is precisely why Quebec separatism is effectively dead.
So what is offered instead is an elaborate pretense. PQ leader Pauline Marois has promised to form of committee to work on a project to develop a plan for a new strategy for independence. The committee will begin by studying past studies of Quebec independence, and then — once the studies are complete — proceed to propose action plans. A new diplomatic initiative will seek to gain international approval of the independence that Quebecers themselves do not want.
In tough economic times, these studies at least offer make-work jobs for under-utilized economists, sociologists, and party functionaries. But they impose a tough challenge on the rest of Canada: how to keep a straight face through the prolonged hemming and hawing. “Okay, you just let us know when you finish talking to yourselves. Take your time. We’ll wait. Four years? Eight? Twenty-seven? Fine. No rush.”