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Options that don’t appear on the ballot


 

Ipsos Reid asks Canadians to choose between a Liberal-NDP coalition and a Conservative majority.

A new Ipsos Reid poll conducted for Global National and Postmedia News indicates the majority of Canadians would prefer to see a Liberal-NDP coalition government (54 per cent) than a Conservative majority government (46 per cent). Also, almost half of Canadians (48 per cent) support the idea of a coalition of opposition parties forming the government. A little more than half (52 per cent) of Canadians oppose the idea.


 

Options that don’t appear on the ballot

  1. .
    I don't pay much attention to pollsters, and their land-line skewed stats.

    But as long as their CEOs dispense with the political scientist punditry interviews, and responsible journalists (if there are any left), dispense with asking their opinions, I'm willing to suffer in silence.
    .

  2. .
    I don't pay much attention to pollsters, and their land-line skewed stats.

    But as long as their CEOs dispense with the political scientist punditry interviews, and responsible journalists (if there are any left), dispense with asking their opinions, I'm willing to suffer in silence.
    .

  3. I still think polling sould be banned during elections. Doing so would force both the media and the public to actually pay attention to policies and political reputations to make their decisions.

  4. I still think polling sould be banned during elections. Doing so would force both the media and the public to actually pay attention to policies and political reputations to make their decisions.

    • I'm not crazy about polls, either, but I believe in freedom of speech.

    • So there isn't any value in asking your neighbours what their impressions are? That's all polling is — bringing up a subject and asking people's opinion on it. You do it a dozen times a day, I'm sure. We all do. I'm not certain who would benefit from wilful ignorance. Do we want the media to just trust their "gut instincts" when they assign momentum to one campaign (as they must)? Do we want parties guess about what parts of their strategy are working? Or is it just that we can't trust ourselves to make responsible decisions if we know more about our fellow citizens' opinions? I'm no populist, but that's somewhat disrespectful of the people's ability to choose.

      • Check out NorthernPOV's post a little down the thread; he sums up my take nicely. Additionally…

        If the media or the parties want to privately poll, that's fine; just don't release the results to the public. There are an awful lot of people with herd mentality who simply want to vote for "the winner". Let them think for themselves; let them talk with their neighbours. Polls seem to have become a substitute for both these things – not an augmentation to them. We don't need pollsters telling us how to think.

        Finally, journalists spend as much or more time discussing polls as covering the issues. See above article. This is a serious dumbing down of the national discussion we ought to be engaging in, and, IMO, an abrogation of jounalistic principles.

        • "Let them think for themselves; …"

          They are thinking for themselves and they decided they wanted to vote for the winner.

          Why support ignorance? More information, the better choices made.

          • No; that's a little thing called "the bandwagon effect." it's letting others think for them and then following.

            And the excess reliance on polls by the media is lazy journalism.

        • Talking with neighbours=polling. Polls allow us to sound out the opinions of vast numbers of people we could never speak to on our own. your other points:

          Name one person you know who voted according to the instructions of someone that person didn't know.

          So what if some people decide how to vote only after knowing who is likely to win? Who do you think you are to tell them how to make up their minds? In 1984 the NDP was polling at about 10-12% with both the Grits and Tories above 40%. During the campaign, however, the Tories surged ahead after a series of blunders. Once it became clear the Conservatives would win the election, the NDP surged as well, up to 19% or so. It would appear that a large number of NDP sympathizers were preparing to vote Liberal to keep the Tories out, but decided not to bother once Lib/Con switchers abandoned Turner. Were they wrong to make that decision?

          You want parties and the media (the media!) to conduct polls, but keep the results secret in order to keep the masses ignorant? God, your elitism is making me feel like a populist — and I hate populists!

          • Polls are taking the place of talking to neighbours. They create a "bandwagon effect" for some. For others, the polls seem to be a substitute for voting; I've met many people who have said "Why bother voting? We already know who is going to win."

            Between these two polling effects, it strikes me that polls are actually harmful to the democratic process. Many people – me being one – are worried about the ever-decreasing number of people showing up at the polls. I think baning public disclosure of polling numbers during elections will increase participation and get more prople voting.

    • This polling question is dangerously misleading.

      The question should have included: what do you think a permanent mechanism for consultation with the BQ means? What does it mean???

  5. Why is it that the pollsters never manage to work the Bloc into that question? I would be interested to know how many Canadians are in favor of a Liberal-NDP-Bloc coalition. Because if coalitions are that good maybe Iggy should jump out in front with a massive flip-flop and go for the brass ring.

  6. Why is it that the pollsters never manage to work the Bloc into that question? I would be interested to know how many Canadians are in favor of a Liberal-NDP-Bloc coalition. Because if coalitions are that good maybe Iggy should jump out in front with a massive flip-flop and go for the brass ring.

    • Its an absurd question, because the Bloc will never be part of a coalition. They were a supporting part of the Lib-NDP deal in 2008, just as the Bloc have supported the conservative government on a number of occasions, helping them to pass legislation. Ignatieff has ruled out having the Bloc as part of a coalition, or even a deal that depends on their support. At this point, its gone from a talking point/scare tactic, to an outright lie.

      I realize that a lie, told often enough, will convince most people, but its still a lie.

      • Actually, I think about it much more pragmatically than that.

        Heck, let's say the Lib/Dips gain 10 seats between them, all from the Cons in this election. So, the two parties are STILL 10 seats (or so) short of the Con total. Pragmatically, they require the Blocs support in order to defeat the Cons. Pragmatically, this gives a lot of leverage to the Bloc. End of story.

        I get that there not in the coalition and not in a formal arrangement, blah blah blah. They still represent the deciding vote. Nuff said.

        • A BQ with 50 seats will almost always be a deciding vote, regardless of who forms the government.

          Nuff said.

          • Your right, "almost always".

            What, I wonder, is the one exception, the one reason we have to say "almost always" instead of "always".

            Oh yeah, a single party majority. I guess there are other exceptions too, like a single party plurality that only requires the support of one party to achieve the majority of parliament. Yeah, those are a couple of exceptions.

            Nuff said.

          • Tell ya what, if any party gets a majority, I'll owe you a coke.

          • :D. Done and done.

            And if the Libs/Dips don't enter what is for all intents and purposes a formal agreement with the Bloc for their support in forming a stable government, I'll owe a coke AND bag of doritos.

        • jonatwitan states"Pragmatically, they require the Blocs support in order to defeat the Cons. Pragmatically, this gives a lot of leverage to the Bloc. End of story."

          How about – Cons require Blocs support in order to defeat the Lib/NDP coalition. Pragmatically, this gives a lot of leverage to the Bloc. End of story.
          I get that there not in the coalition and not in a formal arrangement, blah blah blah. They still represent the deciding vote. Nuff said.

          • True, except that is not how the Cons have operated for the last 5 years. And, it is being argued that that IS how the Lib/Dips will operate for the next 5 years, if the Cons do not get a majority.

            Nuff said sure is fun to say, isn't it?

          • True it was more a Con/Lib coalition for the last 5 years.

            But rarely is "nuff said" nuff said though.

    • It can only be a Lib/NDP/ BQ coalition if the combined Lib/NDP numbers are LESS than the Conservative numbers.

      THAT is what Harper is talking about, but no one seems to understand Harper's real concern, namely that reporters, professor expert and now this polling question, are misleading the Canadian public.

      Why are so many willing to mislead the Canadian public????

    • If you re-read the article you will see that the polling did include the Coalition+Bloc question. Thanks for trying though.

  7. Yes Keith!
    Polling has become the bane of our democracy.
    At best it is an attempt to supplant representative democracy with some perverted version of direct democracy but it mostly has become push-polling: the manufacturing of consent.
    Groups make good decisions when the individuals in the group make their own decisions independently.

    Ban polling during the election (as Israel does) or ban it altogether!!

  8. Yes Keith!
    Polling has become the bane of our democracy.
    At best it is an attempt to supplant representative democracy with some perverted version of direct democracy but it mostly has become push-polling: the manufacturing of consent.
    Groups make good decisions when the individuals in the group make their own decisions independently.

    Ban polling during the election (as Israel does) or ban it altogether!!

    • Really? Group decisions should be made by blind voting without any sounding-out of opinion or exchange of ideas (among voters, I mean, not just the advocates of the various choices)? I cannot believe that.

      As for push-polling, the fact that wording a question differently may result in different responses should be (and is) understood by voters when they consider poll results.

      • Polls are not an exchange of ideas. Townhall debates are an exchange of ideas, even though often Conservative candidates are too cowardly to attend such debates.

        • But not if the ideas proposed by a polling questionaire are false questionairs.

          • So, if the ideas proposed by a polling questionnaire are false questions, the poll BECOMES an exchange of ideas?

            That means you support polling false questions? Like the one above, which is obviously a false question since as Aaron has pointed out, that choice is not on the ballot.

          • The only one in this election is your leader's plane : the No Question Air.

        • Admittedly, polls have their limitations. I'm not going to romanticize them, only point out that, as sterile/clumsy/potentially inaccurate as they may be, public opinion polls are the only (mostly) accurate way to find out what the public at large thinks about, for example, a Liberal/NDP coalition. To ban them would be to shut our ears to the rumbling of our stomach in the neurotic fear that it will influence whether we will decide to have a snack between meals.

      • Speaking of the wording of poll questions, look at the way that Wherry words his own analysis of the poll results.

        First, he says a MAJORITY of Canadians support the Lib/Dip coalition rather than a Con majority. The numbers are 54% to 46%.

        Then, he says ALMOST HALF support the idea of a coalition forming government, followed by A LITTLE MORE THAN HALF who oppose it. The numbers here are statistically equal to the numbers in the first question: 48% to 52%.

        Why did Wherry not say that a MAJORITY of Canadian oppose the idea of a coalition forming government? I guess we'll never know.

  9. In a week where the media tells us Mr. Ignatieff is doing great, this (albiet odd) poll tells us Canadians would rather have Layton leading a coalition government.

    If you read on, regrarding the more tradditional questions, this poll tells us what all the others are saying after week one: Harper’s numbers appear to be solidifying into majority territory (including Nanos’ rollong poll), Harper continues to have an important lead in “seat rich” Ontario, while Mr. Ignatieff’s personal approvaal numbers hover at or below Dion’s – historical lows.

    This, accorinding to a media which has obviosly lost touch, is a great week for Mr. Ignatieff. I regret to say the political media in Canada has decided to go down with the Liberal ship.

    A sad state of affairs indeed.

  10. In a week where the media tells us Mr. Ignatieff is doing great, this (albiet odd) poll tells us Canadians would rather have Layton leading a coalition government.

    If you read on, regrarding the more tradditional questions, this poll tells us what all the others are saying after week one: Harper’s numbers appear to be solidifying into majority territory (including Nanos’ rollong poll), Harper continues to have an important lead in “seat rich” Ontario, while Mr. Ignatieff’s personal approvaal numbers hover at or below Dion’s – historical lows.

    This, accorinding to a media which has obviosly lost touch, is a great week for Mr. Ignatieff. I regret to say the political media in Canada has decided to go down with the Liberal ship.

    A sad state of affairs indeed.

    • The media are reporting what they are seeing with their own eyes.

      Are you suggesting that the media should be reporting through the lens of what the latest polls are saying? Because if you are, that is pretty crazy! You should really read NorthernPoV's post, he makes a great point you should take to heart!

      • Well, I disagree pretty profoundly with NorthernPoV, but nonetheless your point is perfectly valid; the media must report what they see and hear. If they see and hear Iggy doing well in front of crowds/cameras and Harper refusing to debate him more than once (in each OL), then they have to say so.

      • I think he was rather saying that this post by Wherry is a pretty blatant example of selective reporting. Wherry chooses to highlight the best result for his own personal preference, and chooses to disregard the other results which seem to be against his personal preference.

  11. I'm not crazy about polls, either, but I believe in freedom of speech.

  12. Paul Wells has been hammering on this point in Twitter (a point not mentioned by "Colleague" Wherry, btw), which is that this poll is great news for the Conservatives. I suppose the message has gotten out, since the usual suspects on here are bemoaning the results of the poll.

    But, to repeat Wells' point, if the Conservatives get well over 40 per cent of the vote, and the opposition parties are dividing about 50 per cent between them, that represents a clear majority government for the Tories.

    btw, although talk of coalition has dominated the campaign narrative so far, I suspect that the sleeper issue will be the Liberals fiscal/economic plan. Its costing is suspect, and it has no focus on jobs – at least not yet. This line about education being about jobs is bogus because education doesn't address the current jobs market. Iggy seems intent on overlooking the latter.

  13. Paul Wells has been hammering on this point in Twitter (a point not mentioned by "Colleague" Wherry, btw), which is that this poll is great news for the Conservatives. I suppose the message has gotten out, since the usual suspects on here are bemoaning the results of the poll.

    But, to repeat Wells' point, if the Conservatives get well over 40 per cent of the vote, and the opposition parties are dividing about 50 per cent between them, that represents a clear majority government for the Tories.

    btw, although talk of coalition has dominated the campaign narrative so far, I suspect that the sleeper issue will be the Liberals fiscal/economic plan. Its costing is suspect, and it has no focus on jobs – at least not yet. This line about education being about jobs is bogus because education doesn't address the current jobs market. Iggy seems intent on overlooking the latter.

    • What's wrong with the job market? According to Emperor Harpartine, more Canadians have jobs now than they had going into the recession.

      • Our economy is robust, but too fragile to risk changing horses!

        War is Peace!

      • You're making Harper's point for him. Why change course at this time?

        • I dunno — because Harper's "not a leader"?

          • WHAT!!!??!!! Oh, Just Joe, thanks so much for bringing that to my attention. All this time I have been wondering around in the dark, but you have illuminated my path and shown me the error in my previous ways. Thank you Just Joe, thank you so much.

            *walking away* Hey Everyone! Did you know that Harper is not a leader!!!! I know! It's true!

          • sarcasm and ridicule…………………nice…and expected

        • Harper's job isn't chief headhunter. It's absolutely bizarre that professed free-market types nonetheless believe that the PM is pulling the strings on all the job-creation in the country. It's absurd. Largely, the economy does what it does regardless of who's warming the chair in the PMO, unless they implement particularly deleterious policies.

          Job creation as a public policy goal is a bit suspect anyway. I'd rather the government set out policies to make the country wealthier. Job creation as a rubric sees it as a failure when people retire early, for instance.

          • Again, I think you're kind of making Harper's point for him. Lowering corporate tax rates is a measure specifically designed to attract more businesses to Canada, generate more wealth, and create more jobs as a result. In fact, the Liberals were totally on board with this logic until they decided they needed something to run on in an election.

            Iggy's approach is different. He wants to raise those rates and increase spending on measures that have nothing to do with the current job market.

            There is some differentiation there, and it's the way the Liberals wanted it.

            And, again, they don't seem capable of being able to pay for their new spending initiatives. I predict this will be a major issue soon enough. Bye bye Iggy.

          • Dennis, don't get me wrong, I'm happy that corporate taxes were reduced. Unlike some others, I don't think it's credible to believe that 1.5 ppt of difference in rate will be the dividing line between utopia and armageddon. Corporate tax cuts ought to attract investment, but it's not quite true to claim it will create x jobs. It's almost irrelevant. We need more productive workers, not necessarily 70 years olds working at WalMart.

            As far as funding their spending initiatives, we all know how this government funded their program: they borrowed 150 billion dollars. I'm not too happy with our borrow and spend 'conservative' government in this regard. I have a hard time believing you're happy with them. Some conservative you must be.

          • Well, I'm not exactly sure what "borrowing" you're referring to, but I have little doubt that a Liberal-led coalition, for example, would have spent significantly more money on a stimulus package, just for one, in order to deal with the economic crisis.

            I think the Conservatives have been as conservative as they can be without rocking the boat. If, for example, they would have foregone a big stimulus package and bailout program altogether, they would have been dumped as government by the opposition. What's the point of being too ideologically conservative if it lands you on the opposition benches forever?

            I believe one of Harper's primary objectives is to restore political credibility to Canada's conservative movement. If he gets a majority, he might become more conservative, or he'll leave that challenge to a future party leader – having paved the way for that now with a strong party.

          • I thought the only motivation for the coalition was the threat to eliminate party per-vote subsidies. Mixing our messages, I think.

            Harper put us into a structural deficit before the economic crisis. He cut taxes, but didn't cut spending accordingly. He, instead, ramped up spending even faster than Martin or Chretien before him. He elected instead to borrow that money from our children–that is, he raised taxes on the future. How, as a conservative, can you be happy with his performance? The only thing I can imagine is keeping CPC supporters going is the promise that they'll finally get what they want if Harper only had a majority. But then, it basically concedes that Harper has an agenda that he isn't being forthright about, and will only reveal once he has his majority government. His base knows this, and they will expect it to come to pass once he has his majority. Why else would they remain loyal to someone who has betrayed everything Reform was about?

          • I think you've done a good job in getting Denis to admit that Harper was pushed by the opposition [almost typed coalition there] into borrowing. Lve aside whether they would have borrowed more [ they would have also spent it differently – possibly better?] Libs need to fix on one message – yes Harper put us into deficit and we made him cuz it was necessary, and drop the hypocrtical Harper is solely responsible for it all[ of course in the final anlysis as head of the govt he has to answer for that choice] Where lbs need to put their emphasis is [ as you say] he did this while irresponsibly cutting taxes – we would not have done that [ hence we would arguably have not borrowed as much, or been free to invest as well. It's a distinction that has to be made, but made coherently.

  14. The media are reporting what they are seeing with their own eyes.

    Are you suggesting that the media should be reporting through the lens of what the latest polls are saying? Because if you are, that is pretty crazy! You should really read NorthernPoV's post, he makes a great point you should take to heart!

  15. Its an absurd question, because the Bloc will never be part of a coalition. They were a supporting part of the Lib-NDP deal in 2008, just as the Bloc have supported the conservative government on a number of occasions, helping them to pass legislation. Ignatieff has ruled out having the Bloc as part of a coalition, or even a deal that depends on their support. At this point, its gone from a talking point/scare tactic, to an outright lie.

    I realize that a lie, told often enough, will convince most people, but its still a lie.

  16. What's wrong with the job market? According to Emperor Harpartine, more Canadians have jobs now than they had going into the recession.

  17. Gosh, in spite of all that talk of Armageddon and the end of civilization as we know it, Canadians don't mind a coalition after all.

    In fact the majority would prefer it to a Con govt.

    This isn't going well for Harper. LOL

  18. So there isn't any value in asking your neighbours what their impressions are? That's all polling is — bringing up a subject and asking people's opinion on it. You do it a dozen times a day, I'm sure. We all do. I'm not certain who would benefit from wilful ignorance. Do we want the media to just trust their "gut instincts" when they assign momentum to one campaign (as they must)? Do we want parties guess about what parts of their strategy are working? Or is it just that we can't trust ourselves to make responsible decisions if we know more about our fellow citizens' opinions? I'm no populist, but that's somewhat disrespectful of the people's ability to choose.

  19. Our economy is robust, but too fragile to risk changing horses!

    War is Peace!

  20. Gosh, in spite of all that talk of Armageddon and the end of civilization as we know it, Canadians don't mind a coalition after all.

    In fact the majority would prefer it to a Con govt.

    This isn't going well for Harper. LOL

    • Canadians are being duped. Canadians do not understand what the inclusion of the BQ within a coaltion means. And so that aspect is conveniently forgotten about.

      What does it mean, Emily, to have the BQ as a coalition partner. Please, please, tell us, because the wisest heads in this country are not able to tell us. In fact, the so-called experts are all avoiding the BQ' role at ALL cost.

      So, why not you tell us., Emily, what role does the BQ play in the forming of a coalition? Why are you so afraid to talk about the BQ's role???? Why the hiding out on answering the only important question in this campaign: What is the BQ's role to be in a coalition??????

      • As you've been told repeatedly the Bloc has never been, nor would it ever be, part of a coalition.

        • Emily, I have always assumed that you understand basic math, such as 5 is more than 3.

          So how could 112 seats Lib and NDP seats COMBINED be more than 145 seats for the Conservatives?

          Or are you telling me that we should replace a minority Conservative government with an even LESS minority? Is that what our Parliamentary understanding is?????

          Don't let us hanging, Emily. Tell us, why is it that a SMALLER mirority government should replace a larger minority????

          • I repeat: the Bloc has never been, nor would it ever be, part of a coalition.

            I realize Craig's list pays for your posts FV, but don't expect me to help you earn your money.

          • Emily, how many people now on this board counter my valid argument with complete none sense.

            Why is it so difficult to answer my questions regarding the BQ? Why can you not be honest about what is reality? There is no coalition possible between the Libs and NDP if their combined number count is LESS than the Conservative numbercount. The NDP/Lib coalition agreement could only exist if the BQ were to be included in such an agreement.

            Answer the question. Don't make such a fool of yourself by thinking that if you don't answer the question, the question will just go away……

            I think you can't answer the real question, for you know that my answer is the correct one, and, agreeing with me would be unbearable for you. You would much rather let the Canadian federation live as a complete lie than coming to agree with what I'm saying. How absurd.

          • 'my valid argument'

            There's your mistake right there.

      • Still haven't learned what a C&S agreement is, I see.

    • What are you talking about? If Harper can convince 46% of the electorate (or thereabouts, whatever the margin of error is) to vote Tory, he wins a majority. In case you've forgotten, the Liberals and NDP are still running candidates against each other, so the mid-forties is plenty for his purposes. This poll indicates his strategy — run against the opposition as a group — is a good idea for him. Association with Layton and Duceppe weakens the Liberal appeal among the centre-right voters Harper needs. Whether he wins or not will come down to whether he can convince that 10% of the voters that "the coalition" they dislike is real.

      • At the moment his ONLY strategy is backfiring.

        • Yes, the media's examination of Harper's interpretation of "the coalition" is earning him a bit of derision, isn't it? It says a lot that Coyne's piece is the closest thing to supportive of Harper, and he calls the PM a hypocrite (among other things) in it.

          Still, best not to count him out yet. If one week of negative press were enough to do in Harper, he'd never have become prime minister.

      • To be fair, if a week into the campaign he's only been able to convince 46% of respondents, then that doesn't exactly auger well for the remainder of the campaign. It's pretty much been the only note he's been singing since before the writ dropped, frankly I'd expect the number to be higher.

        • Well, 46% is enough, so I imagine he's happy with the number.

          • And if the election was this coming Monday and not a month away, I'd agree with you.

    • I repeat myself, as Emily seems to have been duped by Wherry's "analysis".

      Speaking of the wording of poll questions, look at the way that Wherry words his own analysis of the poll results.

      First, he says a MAJORITY of Canadians support the Lib/Dip coalition rather than a Con majority. The numbers are 54% to 46%.

      Then, he says ALMOST HALF support the idea of a coalition forming government, followed by A LITTLE MORE THAN HALF who oppose it. The numbers here are statistically equal to the numbers in the first question: 48% to 52%.

      Why did Wherry not say that a MAJORITY of Canadian oppose the idea of a coalition forming government? I guess we'll never know.

      • Wherry didn't say it, Ipsos Reid did.

        • Fair enough Emily, fair enough indeed.

          Of course, they also said a few other things, including: "Split 50%/50% When Bloc is Added to the Coalition"

          • Except the Bloc never was, and never will be, in a coalition.

          • And there was this from EKOS, which got passed over:

            CONSERVATIVES OPEN UP DAYLIGHT IN THE FIRST WEEK OF CAMPAIGN

          • Liberals narrow gap to 6 points in campaign's ‘first possible shift' http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/otta

            And going into the campaign you were all boasting about a 20 point lead.

            See, that's the trouble when you believe something without thinking.

          • Actually Emily, I'm not one of the one's who is guilty of prematurely making a big deal out of any single poll, and besides, that's not what we were talking about.

          • The reality is, the election is too close to call…..which is why the polls are all over the map.

      • Perhaps you should read the article you link to.

        That's the wording they used.

        Blame Ipsos.

        • Ummmm….thanks Thwim. If you read above, you will see that Emily already made this point, and I already conceded defeat.

          • I tend to avoid reading threads between you and Emily if I can avoid it.

            But it's still worth mentioning again considering you reposted the same damn thing about 3 times throughout the threads on this article. Perhaps you should mea-culpa under each.

          • Well, aren't you just a cut above the common rabble. Good for you.

            And okay, I concede defeat to you also.

            There, you got your shot in after I so effortlessly dismantled you two days ago on the Cosh article. Are you happy?

            (How's that for a backhanded admission of wrong?)

          • You're welcome to your opinion. Wrong as it may be.

      • "Why did Wherry not say that a MAJORITY of Canadian oppose the idea of a coalition forming government? I guess we'll never know. "

        If you'd bothered to watch the video you'd have found your answer. The statistically equal figure include the bloc, the first set does not. It's a badly written article. The really interesting question is did MI make a mistake in ruling out all coaltions, instead of solely with the bloq – which was of course a must? Now he has to rely on NDP supporters fearing a con majority. I'm not sure how many people outside of political junkies get that they will have a shot at power anyway if only they can prevent a tory majority.

    • We have one right wing party and 3 essentially centre left parties. If more Canadians vote for a centre left party but the largest share of votes go to the right wing party without adding up to a majority of Canadians (under 50%) then it is completely justifiable democratically for a coalition of the left of centre parties to form a coalition if they cam agree on common ground to do so. Support of the block might be required but as long as the blocks support was ad hock and not part of a formal coalition there is little difference between that situation and a conservative minority relying on block support for some measures. As has happened. If most Canadians favor left of centre approaches even if this vote splits between several parties than it's not undemocratic for the country to be governed by the common ground shared by those parties. .

  21. Really? Group decisions should be made by blind voting without any sounding-out of opinion or exchange of ideas (among voters, I mean, not just the advocates of the various choices)? I cannot believe that.

    As for push-polling, the fact that wording a question differently may result in different responses should be (and is) understood by voters when they consider poll results.

  22. You're making Harper's point for him. Why change course at this time?

  23. Well, I disagree pretty profoundly with NorthernPoV, but nonetheless your point is perfectly valid; the media must report what they see and hear. If they see and hear Iggy doing well in front of crowds/cameras and Harper refusing to debate him more than once (in each OL), then they have to say so.

  24. Check out NorthernPOV's post a little down the thread; he sums up my take nicely. Additionally…

    If the media or the parties want to privately poll, that's fine; just don't release the results to the public. There are an awful lot of people with herd mentality who simply want to vote for "the winner". Let them think for themselves; let them talk with their neighbours. Polls seem to have become a substitute for both these things – not an augmentation to them. We don't need pollsters telling us how to think.

    Finally, journalists spend as much or more time discussing polls as covering the issues. See above article. This is a serious dumbing down of the national discussion we ought to be engaging in, and, IMO, an abrogation of jounalistic principles.

  25. Polls are not an exchange of ideas. Townhall debates are an exchange of ideas, even though often Conservative candidates are too cowardly to attend such debates.

  26. " Liberal-NDP coalition government (54 per cent) "

    ——————————-0———————————

    Are we as Canadians that stupid? A LIb/Coalition CANNOT exist because it doesn't have the combined number count!!!! to form a coalition. .

    It can ONLY be a Lib/NDP/BQ coalition agreement with the minority Lib/NDP coalition part forming the coalition government and the BQ to support the minority Lib/NDP coalition government with a Permanent mechanism for consultation with the BQ. .

    A Lib/NDP coalition agreement cannot exist! DO THE NUMBERS PEOPLE! THE NUMBERS MAKE IT IMPOSSIBLE.

    Such coalition will always need the BQ.

  27. " Liberal-NDP coalition government (54 per cent) "

    ——————————-0———————————

    Are we as Canadians that stupid? A LIb/Coalition CANNOT exist because it doesn't have the combined number count!!!! to form a coalition. .

    It can ONLY be a Lib/NDP/BQ coalition agreement with the minority Lib/NDP coalition part forming the coalition government and the BQ to support the minority Lib/NDP coalition government with a Permanent mechanism for consultation with the BQ. .

    A Lib/NDP coalition agreement cannot exist! DO THE NUMBERS PEOPLE! THE NUMBERS MAKE IT IMPOSSIBLE.

    Such coalition will always need the BQ.

    • You really post a lot of suspect stuff on these boards but this ones calls out for a reply…
      Do you have a time machine ? (You already know the outcome of the election on May 2?)
      "A LIb/Coalition CANNOT exist because it doesn't have the combined number count!!!! to form a coalition."

      • Ok, YOU give me the numbers. I am willing to counter any thing you suggest by means of your anticipated numbers. Any set of numbers will do. Any set will do. Just let me know which supposed set of numbers you want to work with.

        The number game is not an obstacle for me, for futher discussing the involvement of the BQ. Bring your numbers forward and I will reply.

        Let's do it.

        • huh?
          I can't give you any numbers as yet. That was my point.
          Something will happen on May 2 …. and then we will all have "the numbers". (hint: it is called "an election")
          Till then I am working on the Catch 22 Campaign to defeat Harper… bye

          • Any numbers. Let's do some number crunching. Coalition forming is all about number crunching.

            I am not asking for any outcome of this particular election. Any set of numbers will do. Just give me any possible set of numbers, so that the numbers come from you, because you won't believe any set of numbers I will put forth, and I am willing to discuss any set of numbers put forth – by anyone.

            Come on, let any one put forth some numbers, and I will do the math.

            Don't find more excuses. Step up to the plate. You don't believe Harper, I suppose, so let's leave Harper out of this. This is between me and anyone who wants to put forth a set of election result numbers.

          • 155.

  28. Next, Harper will blame this on an evil coalition of media! Or an evil coalition of pollsters! Or an evil coalition of media AND pollsters! And they will be joining up with the zombies any morment now!

  29. Next, Harper will blame this on an evil coalition of media! Or an evil coalition of pollsters! Or an evil coalition of media AND pollsters! And they will be joining up with the zombies any morment now!

    • I'd like to see a coalition of voters vote the sum'b!tches out.

    • Ok, Holly, if Harper is wrong in explaining things,. why won't you ask Ignatieff or Layton to explain what a "Permanent mechanism for consultation" with the BQ means?

      What is this Permanent mechanism for consultation the BQ is talking about? I mean, if the provincial/separatist BQ party is going to be handed the balance of power in the federation we call Canada, then I would certainly like to know what this permanent mechanism for consultation with the BQ means????

      Canadians have a right to have that most important question of all answered. Harper has answered it. Has Ignatieff, or Layton, or Duceppe? Have they answered the question? If so, please share it with us all because Ignatieff and Layton, and Duceppe so far haven't shared any of that information with Canadians. If you don't believe Harper, than let the other leaders answer the real question. Or, better yet, let the media ask Layton and Ignatieff and Duceppe what this Permanent mechanism for consultation with the BQ stands for. Canadians are all waiting.

  30. "Let them think for themselves; …"

    They are thinking for themselves and they decided they wanted to vote for the winner.

    Why support ignorance? More information, the better choices made.

  31. I'd like to see a coalition of voters vote the sum'b!tches out.

  32. I dunno — because Harper's "not a leader"?

  33. Harper's job isn't chief headhunter. It's absolutely bizarre that professed free-market types nonetheless believe that the PM is pulling the strings on all the job-creation in the country. It's absurd. Largely, the economy does what it does regardless of who's warming the chair in the PMO, unless they implement particularly deleterious policies.

    Job creation as a public policy goal is a bit suspect anyway. I'd rather the government set out policies to make the country wealthier. Job creation as a rubric sees it as a failure when people retire early, for instance.

  34. Talking with neighbours=polling. Polls allow us to sound out the opinions of vast numbers of people we could never speak to on our own. your other points:

    Name one person you know who voted according to the instructions of someone that person didn't know.

    So what if some people decide how to vote only after knowing who is likely to win? Who do you think you are to tell them how to make up their minds? In 1984 the NDP was polling at about 10-12% with both the Grits and Tories above 40%. During the campaign, however, the Tories surged ahead after a series of blunders. Once it became clear the Conservatives would win the election, the NDP surged as well, up to 19% or so. It would appear that a large number of NDP sympathizers were preparing to vote Liberal to keep the Tories out, but decided not to bother once Lib/Con switchers abandoned Turner. Were they wrong to make that decision?

    You want parties and the media (the media!) to conduct polls, but keep the results secret in order to keep the masses ignorant? God, your elitism is making me feel like a populist — and I hate populists!

  35. Man Alive! Look at those numbers. They are shocking for Libs, even fans of coalition don't want Iggy.

    I hope msm reads that poll and have a second look at their 'Iggy has momentum' narrative they have been peddling the past couple of days because it just ain't true. Journos – more critical thinking and less sycophancy, please.

    " – If a coalition of all three opposition parties – 59 per cent of Canadians would like to see NDP leader Jack Layton lead it. Just 27 per cent would like to see Ignatieff do so, and 14 per cent would choose Bloc leader Gilles Duceppe for the job

    – No matter what problems they may have with Harper, nearly half (47 per cent) of them most trust him and his party to manage the economy, while 23 per cent most trust the Liberals and another 23 per cent most trust the NDP.

    – When considering who could provide open, responsible and ethical government, four in ten (39 per cent) Canadians most trust Harper and the Conservatives. Jack Layton and the NDP (34 per cent) are in a close second place. Trailing behind are Michael Ignatieff and the Liberals (19 per cent)

    – Helping to explain the relative success of the Conservative Party in the polls, nearly six in ten (57 per cent) of Canadians believe that Canada is “moving in the right track,”

  36. Man Alive! Look at those numbers. They are shocking for Libs, even fans of coalition don't want Iggy.

    I hope msm reads that poll and have a second look at their 'Iggy has momentum' narrative they have been peddling the past couple of days because it just ain't true. Journos – more critical thinking and less sycophancy, please.

    " – If a coalition of all three opposition parties – 59 per cent of Canadians would like to see NDP leader Jack Layton lead it. Just 27 per cent would like to see Ignatieff do so, and 14 per cent would choose Bloc leader Gilles Duceppe for the job

    – No matter what problems they may have with Harper, nearly half (47 per cent) of them most trust him and his party to manage the economy, while 23 per cent most trust the Liberals and another 23 per cent most trust the NDP.

    – When considering who could provide open, responsible and ethical government, four in ten (39 per cent) Canadians most trust Harper and the Conservatives. Jack Layton and the NDP (34 per cent) are in a close second place. Trailing behind are Michael Ignatieff and the Liberals (19 per cent)

    – Helping to explain the relative success of the Conservative Party in the polls, nearly six in ten (57 per cent) of Canadians believe that Canada is “moving in the right track,”

    • Yep, this always happens to me. I start to give Wherry the benefit of the doubt, and start to think that he really is more fair than he comes across, that he really does give all parties and all leaders equal shots.

      Then, he comes out with another blatant anti-Conservative, pro-Liberal post. The selective reporting demonstrated in this post verges on outrageous. I only wish he were more like colleague-Cosh and that he actually tried to defend himself a little. Alas.

      • "I start to give Wherry the benefit of the doubt"

        Why? He's been a Liberal cheerleader and spin-doctor for such a long time now. He's gained himself a loyal following of rabid conservative-hating partisans.

        • We have decoder rings and everything.

  37. This polling question is dangerously misleading.

    The question should have included: what do you think a permanent mechanism for consultation with the BQ means? What does it mean???

  38. It can only be a Lib/NDP/ BQ coalition if the combined Lib/NDP numbers are LESS than the Conservative numbers.

    THAT is what Harper is talking about, but no one seems to understand Harper's real concern, namely that reporters, professor expert and now this polling question, are misleading the Canadian public.

    Why are so many willing to mislead the Canadian public????

  39. But not if the ideas proposed by a polling questionaire are false questionairs.

  40. It's a great idea. The LPC wants to spend on new programs. The NDP wants to spend on new programs. The Bloc wants to spend on new programs in Quebec. They will have to compromise, so they will agree to support each other's wish-lists and we'll have lots of new program spending.

  41. It's a great idea. The LPC wants to spend on new programs. The NDP wants to spend on new programs. The Bloc wants to spend on new programs in Quebec. They will have to compromise, so they will agree to support each other's wish-lists and we'll have lots of new program spending.

  42. Canadians are being duped. Canadians do not understand what the inclusion of the BQ within a coaltion means. And so that aspect is conveniently forgotten about.

    What does it mean, Emily, to have the BQ as a coalition partner. Please, please, tell us, because the wisest heads in this country are not able to tell us. In fact, the so-called experts are all avoiding the BQ' role at ALL cost.

    So, why not you tell us., Emily, what role does the BQ play in the forming of a coalition? Why are you so afraid to talk about the BQ's role???? Why the hiding out on answering the only important question in this campaign: What is the BQ's role to be in a coalition??????

  43. Admittedly, polls have their limitations. I'm not going to romanticize them, only point out that, as sterile/clumsy/potentially inaccurate as they may be, public opinion polls are the only (mostly) accurate way to find out what the public at large thinks about, for example, a Liberal/NDP coalition. To ban them would be to shut our ears to the rumbling of our stomach in the neurotic fear that it will influence whether we will decide to have a snack between meals.

  44. As you've been told repeatedly the Bloc has never been, nor would it ever be, part of a coalition.

  45. Again, I think you're kind of making Harper's point for him. Lowering corporate tax rates is a measure specifically designed to attract more businesses to Canada, generate more wealth, and create more jobs as a result. In fact, the Liberals were totally on board with this logic until they decided they needed something to run on in an election.

    Iggy's approach is different. He wants to raise those rates and increase spending on measures that have nothing to do with the current job market.

    There is some differentiation there, and it's the way the Liberals wanted it.

    And, again, they don't seem capable of being able to pay for their new spending initiatives. I predict this will be a major issue soon enough. Bye bye Iggy.

  46. Ok, Holly, if Harper is wrong in explaining things,. why won't you ask Ignatieff or Layton to explain what a "Permanent mechanism for consultation" with the BQ means?

    What is this Permanent mechanism for consultation the BQ is talking about? I mean, if the provincial/separatist BQ party is going to be handed the balance of power in the federation we call Canada, then I would certainly like to know what this permanent mechanism for consultation with the BQ means????

    Canadians have a right to have that most important question of all answered. Harper has answered it. Has Ignatieff, or Layton, or Duceppe? Have they answered the question? If so, please share it with us all because Ignatieff and Layton, and Duceppe so far haven't shared any of that information with Canadians. If you don't believe Harper, than let the other leaders answer the real question. Or, better yet, let the media ask Layton and Ignatieff and Duceppe what this Permanent mechanism for consultation with the BQ stands for. Canadians are all waiting.

  47. What are you talking about? If Harper can convince 46% of the electorate (or thereabouts, whatever the margin of error is) to vote Tory, he wins a majority. In case you've forgotten, the Liberals and NDP are still running candidates against each other, so the mid-forties is plenty for his purposes. This poll indicates his strategy — run against the opposition as a group — is a good idea for him. Association with Layton and Duceppe weakens the Liberal appeal among the centre-right voters Harper needs. Whether he wins or not will come down to whether he can convince that 10% of the voters that "the coalition" they dislike is real.

  48. Dennis, don't get me wrong, I'm happy that corporate taxes were reduced. Unlike some others, I don't think it's credible to believe that 1.5 ppt of difference in rate will be the dividing line between utopia and armageddon. Corporate tax cuts ought to attract investment, but it's not quite true to claim it will create x jobs. It's almost irrelevant. We need more productive workers, not necessarily 70 years olds working at WalMart.

    As far as funding their spending initiatives, we all know how this government funded their program: they borrowed 150 billion dollars. I'm not too happy with our borrow and spend 'conservative' government in this regard. I have a hard time believing you're happy with them. Some conservative you must be.

  49. At the moment his ONLY strategy is backfiring.

  50. Emily, I have always assumed that you understand basic math, such as 5 is more than 3.

    So how could 112 seats Lib and NDP seats COMBINED be more than 145 seats for the Conservatives?

    Or are you telling me that we should replace a minority Conservative government with an even LESS minority? Is that what our Parliamentary understanding is?????

    Don't let us hanging, Emily. Tell us, why is it that a SMALLER mirority government should replace a larger minority????

  51. I repeat: the Bloc has never been, nor would it ever be, part of a coalition.

    I realize Craig's list pays for your posts FV, but don't expect me to help you earn your money.

  52. To be fair, if a week into the campaign he's only been able to convince 46% of respondents, then that doesn't exactly auger well for the remainder of the campaign. It's pretty much been the only note he's been singing since before the writ dropped, frankly I'd expect the number to be higher.

  53. Somewhat off-topic question – does anybody know where I can find a comparison between how much a corporation would pay in taxes if the Liberals win and the scheduled decrease is canceled and how much a similar company would pay in the US when health care expenses are factored in?

  54. Somewhat off-topic question – does anybody know where I can find a comparison between how much a corporation would pay in taxes if the Liberals win and the scheduled decrease is canceled and how much a similar company would pay in the US when health care expenses are factored in?

  55. Actually, I think about it much more pragmatically than that.

    Heck, let's say the Lib/Dips gain 10 seats between them, all from the Cons in this election. So, the two parties are STILL 10 seats (or so) short of the Con total. Pragmatically, they require the Blocs support in order to defeat the Cons. Pragmatically, this gives a lot of leverage to the Bloc. End of story.

    I get that there not in the coalition and not in a formal arrangement, blah blah blah. They still represent the deciding vote. Nuff said.

  56. Emily, how many people now on this board counter my valid argument with complete none sense.

    Why is it so difficult to answer my questions regarding the BQ? Why can you not be honest about what is reality? There is no coalition possible between the Libs and NDP if their combined number count is LESS than the Conservative numbercount. The NDP/Lib coalition agreement could only exist if the BQ were to be included in such an agreement.

    Answer the question. Don't make such a fool of yourself by thinking that if you don't answer the question, the question will just go away……

    I think you can't answer the real question, for you know that my answer is the correct one, and, agreeing with me would be unbearable for you. You would much rather let the Canadian federation live as a complete lie than coming to agree with what I'm saying. How absurd.

  57. 'my valid argument'

    There's your mistake right there.

  58. A BQ with 50 seats will almost always be a deciding vote, regardless of who forms the government.

    Nuff said.

  59. Speaking of the wording of poll questions, look at the way that Wherry words his own analysis of the poll results.

    First, he says a MAJORITY of Canadians support the Lib/Dip coalition rather than a Con majority. The numbers are 54% to 46%.

    Then, he says ALMOST HALF support the idea of a coalition forming government, followed by A LITTLE MORE THAN HALF who oppose it. The numbers here are statistically equal to the numbers in the first question: 48% to 52%.

    Why did Wherry not say that a MAJORITY of Canadian oppose the idea of a coalition forming government? I guess we'll never know.

  60. Yes, the media's examination of Harper's interpretation of "the coalition" is earning him a bit of derision, isn't it? It says a lot that Coyne's piece is the closest thing to supportive of Harper, and he calls the PM a hypocrite (among other things) in it.

    Still, best not to count him out yet. If one week of negative press were enough to do in Harper, he'd never have become prime minister.

  61. I think he was rather saying that this post by Wherry is a pretty blatant example of selective reporting. Wherry chooses to highlight the best result for his own personal preference, and chooses to disregard the other results which seem to be against his personal preference.

  62. Well, 46% is enough, so I imagine he's happy with the number.

  63. This poll is extremely good news for the Conservatives.

    If the 46% who prefer a Conservative majority vote Conservative, Canada gets a Conservative majority.

  64. This poll is extremely good news for the Conservatives.

    If the 46% who prefer a Conservative majority vote Conservative, Canada gets a Conservative majority.

    • What's weird is that no way Cons are going to get 46% of vote so about 6-10% of Lib/NDP voters prefer Con majority to Lib/NDP coalition.

      I had impression yesterday there was poll Liberal supporters were excited about. I wonder if this was the one and coalition fans were confused and thought 54% was good number.

    • Despite the majority of the country wanting something else. Good news for the CPC.. not so much for Canada.

      • Very few prime ministers have ever won an absolute majority of the popular vote. The last time this happened was Mulroney in 1984.

        This means that >50% of Canadians routinely vote for a party other than the governing party. It's how our system works.

        • You're really trying to play that you don't know the difference between a choice of two options and a choice with more than two?

          Remember all that crap about saying, "Well we can't claim that a majority actually didn't want the conservatives".. guess what.. NOW WE CAN.

          • You're really trying to play that you don't know the difference between a choice of two options and a choice with more than two?

            What are you talking about??? What I said makes perfect sense. The majority of Canadian voters didn't vote for the party that formed the government in 1988, 1993, 1997, 2000, 2004, 2006, or 2008, and they probably won't in 2011.

          • I'm sorry. I didn't realize that this was "quote irrelevant fact" day.

            You'll note what I pointed out wasn't anything to do with who they voted for. It was for who they voted *against*. This is the key difference, and what you were trying to sweep under the carpet with your response.

            Yes, few parties come to power in Canada with a majority of the vote. However, before the defense has always been that we can't really say that a majority of Canadians actively voted against the party that came into power.. that would be the reply of "Well the Liberals only got 26%" or whatever. No, they weren't voting against the CPC, they just preferred someone else more. Well.. now we can specifically that a majority of people in Canada actively do not want the CPC, in particular, to be our government.

            So how is it a good thing if because of a quirk of our system, they become the government?

    • But the poll is premised on a false dichotomy. "Conservative" and "Liberal/NDP coalition" are not the options that appear on the ballot.

      Such a poll I think is only good news for the Tories if they can successfully frame the election as a choice between two options – Conservatives or coalition. I don't think Harper can do that – if this week is any evidence, every time he mentions "coalition" it brings up more questions about his intentions in 2004 and 1997 than Ignatieff's intentions now.

    • Yes, it is good news for the Cons. Not surprising the media tried to spin it otherwise. Most headlines were of the variety "Canadians want coalition". If all these people want the coalition, then why don't the Libs and NDP merge and get it over with?!

      I think I saw somewhere that Con support was considered to have a ceiling of 46 (308.com perhaps?). This confirms that number – 46% seem to be the number that would vote Conservative under the right circumstances.

  65. WHAT!!!??!!! Oh, Just Joe, thanks so much for bringing that to my attention. All this time I have been wondering around in the dark, but you have illuminated my path and shown me the error in my previous ways. Thank you Just Joe, thank you so much.

    *walking away* Hey Everyone! Did you know that Harper is not a leader!!!! I know! It's true!

  66. I repeat myself, as Emily seems to have been duped by Wherry's "analysis".

    Speaking of the wording of poll questions, look at the way that Wherry words his own analysis of the poll results.

    First, he says a MAJORITY of Canadians support the Lib/Dip coalition rather than a Con majority. The numbers are 54% to 46%.

    Then, he says ALMOST HALF support the idea of a coalition forming government, followed by A LITTLE MORE THAN HALF who oppose it. The numbers here are statistically equal to the numbers in the first question: 48% to 52%.

    Why did Wherry not say that a MAJORITY of Canadian oppose the idea of a coalition forming government? I guess we'll never know.

  67. And if the election was this coming Monday and not a month away, I'd agree with you.

  68. Yep, this always happens to me. I start to give Wherry the benefit of the doubt, and start to think that he really is more fair than he comes across, that he really does give all parties and all leaders equal shots.

    Then, he comes out with another blatant anti-Conservative, pro-Liberal post. The selective reporting demonstrated in this post verges on outrageous. I only wish he were more like colleague-Cosh and that he actually tried to defend himself a little. Alas.

  69. You really post a lot of suspect stuff on these boards but this ones calls out for a reply…
    Do you have a time machine ? (You already know the outcome of the election on May 2?)
    "A LIb/Coalition CANNOT exist because it doesn't have the combined number count!!!! to form a coalition."

    • Here's the summary: http://www.ipsos-na.com/download/pr.aspx?id=10547

      Okay, those of you who support the coalition (or whatever you want to call it) idea, what do you think of the question about who people would prefer to see lead the country? I mean, Jack Layton runs away with it! I really am curious about your thoughts.

  70. Wherry didn't say it, Ipsos Reid did.

  71. Here's the summary: http://www.ipsos-na.com/download/pr.aspx?id=10547

    Okay, those of you who support the coalition (or whatever you want to call it) idea, what do you think of the question about who people would prefer to see lead the country? I mean, Jack Layton runs away with it! I really am curious about your thoughts.

  72. Ok, YOU give me the numbers. I am willing to counter any thing you suggest by means of your anticipated numbers. Any set of numbers will do. Any set will do. Just let me know which supposed set of numbers you want to work with.

    The number game is not an obstacle for me, for futher discussing the involvement of the BQ. Bring your numbers forward and I will reply.

    Let's do it.

  73. Your right, "almost always".

    What, I wonder, is the one exception, the one reason we have to say "almost always" instead of "always".

    Oh yeah, a single party majority. I guess there are other exceptions too, like a single party plurality that only requires the support of one party to achieve the majority of parliament. Yeah, those are a couple of exceptions.

    Nuff said.

  74. What's weird is that no way Cons are going to get 46% of vote so about 6-10% of Lib/NDP voters prefer Con majority to Lib/NDP coalition.

    I had impression yesterday there was poll Liberal supporters were excited about. I wonder if this was the one and coalition fans were confused and thought 54% was good number.

  75. Fair enough Emily, fair enough indeed.

    Of course, they also said a few other things, including: "Split 50%/50% When Bloc is Added to the Coalition"

  76. Despite the majority of the country wanting something else. Good news for the CPC.. not so much for Canada.

  77. Still haven't learned what a C&S agreement is, I see.

  78. Except the Bloc never was, and never will be, in a coalition.

  79. And there was this from EKOS, which got passed over:

    CONSERVATIVES OPEN UP DAYLIGHT IN THE FIRST WEEK OF CAMPAIGN

  80. Geez Wheery, the option would appear on the ballot if the Liberals/NDP merged. Or even if they ran a slate of candidates that did not run against each other.

    If they want a coalition on the ballot, there's nothing stopping them.

  81. Geez Wheery, the option would appear on the ballot if the Liberals/NDP merged. Or even if they ran a slate of candidates that did not run against each other.

    If they want a coalition on the ballot, there's nothing stopping them.

    • But Mr.Wherrry does not care much for common sense. It's all about emotion without any reason attached. This election is not about Canada's future. This election is all about how best to pull the wool further over the voter's eyes. It's pathetic what is happening with the election coverage so far.

  82. Liberals narrow gap to 6 points in campaign's ‘first possible shift' http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/otta

    And going into the campaign you were all boasting about a 20 point lead.

    See, that's the trouble when you believe something without thinking.

  83. Tell ya what, if any party gets a majority, I'll owe you a coke.

  84. But the poll is premised on a false dichotomy. "Conservative" and "Liberal/NDP coalition" are not the options that appear on the ballot.

    Such a poll I think is only good news for the Tories if they can successfully frame the election as a choice between two options – Conservatives or coalition. I don't think Harper can do that – if this week is any evidence, every time he mentions "coalition" it brings up more questions about his intentions in 2004 and 1997 than Ignatieff's intentions now.

  85. They were excited about the Nanos poll 2 days back that had the Libs at 32%. They didn't even bother to notice that Conservative support rose in the same poll.
    http://www.nanosresearch.com/election2011/2011040

    Of course, smart people would wait for confirmation from a couple of other polls to rule out the fact it's an outlier poll. In a 3 day tracking system, that means waiting 3 days in the nanos tracker, or looking at other pollsters.

    Liberals, of course, are not smart. They even wrote giddy articles celebrating themselves. They called it a "surge" and blamed it on Harper, of course.
    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/otta
    http://thechronicleherald.ca/Opinion/1236309.html
    http://www.lfpress.com/comment/2011/04/01/1784327

    They were very giddy. I'll bet Wherry was doing backflips.

    And, as we wait 3 days, 2 days later we see the Liberal number in the nanos poll tracking back down to 30 and Con support above 41 now.

  86. Actually Emily, I'm not one of the one's who is guilty of prematurely making a big deal out of any single poll, and besides, that's not what we were talking about.

  87. Yes, it is good news for the Cons. Not surprising the media tried to spin it otherwise. Most headlines were of the variety "Canadians want coalition". If all these people want the coalition, then why don't the Libs and NDP merge and get it over with?!

    I think I saw somewhere that Con support was considered to have a ceiling of 46 (308.com perhaps?). This confirms that number – 46% seem to be the number that would vote Conservative under the right circumstances.

  88. jonatwitan states"Pragmatically, they require the Blocs support in order to defeat the Cons. Pragmatically, this gives a lot of leverage to the Bloc. End of story."

    How about – Cons require Blocs support in order to defeat the Lib/NDP coalition. Pragmatically, this gives a lot of leverage to the Bloc. End of story.
    I get that there not in the coalition and not in a formal arrangement, blah blah blah. They still represent the deciding vote. Nuff said.

  89. Perhaps you should read the article you link to.

    That's the wording they used.

    Blame Ipsos.

  90. "I start to give Wherry the benefit of the doubt"

    Why? He's been a Liberal cheerleader and spin-doctor for such a long time now. He's gained himself a loyal following of rabid conservative-hating partisans.

  91. Ummmm….thanks Thwim. If you read above, you will see that Emily already made this point, and I already conceded defeat.

  92. True, except that is not how the Cons have operated for the last 5 years. And, it is being argued that that IS how the Lib/Dips will operate for the next 5 years, if the Cons do not get a majority.

    Nuff said sure is fun to say, isn't it?

  93. People have been making various predictions about what they think the outcome of the election will be – vote percentage, # seats, etc…

    I feel inclined to make a slightly different prediction: In 2008, the CPC got 5,208,796 votes nationwide.

    My prediction: this election, he will get less than that.

    From this, I say what defines success or failure for Harper this election is how well he can suppress the Liberal vote and convince it to stay home on election day.

  94. huh?
    I can't give you any numbers as yet. That was my point.
    Something will happen on May 2 …. and then we will all have "the numbers". (hint: it is called "an election")
    Till then I am working on the Catch 22 Campaign to defeat Harper… bye

  95. People have been making various predictions about what they think the outcome of the election will be – vote percentage, # seats, etc…

    I feel inclined to make a slightly different prediction: In 2008, the CPC got 5,208,796 votes nationwide.

    My prediction: this election, he will get less than that.

    From this, I say what defines success or failure for Harper this election is how well he can suppress the Liberal vote and convince it to stay home on election day.

    • Interesting prediction. I can't say I agree, but it's an interesting thought.

      • What do you think has occurred that will cause more people to vote CPC this time than last time?

  96. :D. Done and done.

    And if the Libs/Dips don't enter what is for all intents and purposes a formal agreement with the Bloc for their support in forming a stable government, I'll owe a coke AND bag of doritos.

  97. I tend to avoid reading threads between you and Emily if I can avoid it.

    But it's still worth mentioning again considering you reposted the same damn thing about 3 times throughout the threads on this article. Perhaps you should mea-culpa under each.

  98. Any numbers. Let's do some number crunching. Coalition forming is all about number crunching.

    I am not asking for any outcome of this particular election. Any set of numbers will do. Just give me any possible set of numbers, so that the numbers come from you, because you won't believe any set of numbers I will put forth, and I am willing to discuss any set of numbers put forth – by anyone.

    Come on, let any one put forth some numbers, and I will do the math.

    Don't find more excuses. Step up to the plate. You don't believe Harper, I suppose, so let's leave Harper out of this. This is between me and anyone who wants to put forth a set of election result numbers.

  99. True it was more a Con/Lib coalition for the last 5 years.

    But rarely is "nuff said" nuff said though.

  100. The reality is, the election is too close to call…..which is why the polls are all over the map.

  101. But Mr.Wherrry does not care much for common sense. It's all about emotion without any reason attached. This election is not about Canada's future. This election is all about how best to pull the wool further over the voter's eyes. It's pathetic what is happening with the election coverage so far.

  102. when I look at the Nanos tracking, the trend seems to be:

    -NDP tanking in Ontario and BC. Their support bleeding equally to Libs and Cons.
    -BQ dropping in Quebec. Cons rising.
    -Atlantic shows a small Con drop and Liberal gain (Alantic always volatile due to high poll uncertainty +- 10, however).

    I think what we're seeing is this:
    In Ontario/BC, NDP supporters (and Greens) see a Con majority as a possibility and thus are shifting to the Liberals.
    Meanwhile, the Cons have been gaining voters at the expense of the Liberals, since many don't want to vote for Ignatieff, and many believe Canada is on the right track.

    In Quebec, Cons are gaining in some allophone/anglophone areas at the expense of the Libs and in some francophone areas at the expense of the BQ. The reasons are the same.

  103. Very few prime ministers have ever won an absolute majority of the popular vote. The last time this happened was Mulroney in 1984.

    This means that >50% of Canadians routinely vote for a party other than the governing party. It's how our system works.

  104. Well, aren't you just a cut above the common rabble. Good for you.

    And okay, I concede defeat to you also.

    There, you got your shot in after I so effortlessly dismantled you two days ago on the Cosh article. Are you happy?

    (How's that for a backhanded admission of wrong?)

  105. So, if the ideas proposed by a polling questionnaire are false questions, the poll BECOMES an exchange of ideas?

    That means you support polling false questions? Like the one above, which is obviously a false question since as Aaron has pointed out, that choice is not on the ballot.

  106. Interesting prediction. I can't say I agree, but it's an interesting thought.

  107. Well, I'm not exactly sure what "borrowing" you're referring to, but I have little doubt that a Liberal-led coalition, for example, would have spent significantly more money on a stimulus package, just for one, in order to deal with the economic crisis.

    I think the Conservatives have been as conservative as they can be without rocking the boat. If, for example, they would have foregone a big stimulus package and bailout program altogether, they would have been dumped as government by the opposition. What's the point of being too ideologically conservative if it lands you on the opposition benches forever?

    I believe one of Harper's primary objectives is to restore political credibility to Canada's conservative movement. If he gets a majority, he might become more conservative, or he'll leave that challenge to a future party leader – having paved the way for that now with a strong party.

  108. You're really trying to play that you don't know the difference between a choice of two options and a choice with more than two?

    Remember all that crap about saying, "Well we can't claim that a majority actually didn't want the conservatives".. guess what.. NOW WE CAN.

  109. You're welcome to your opinion. Wrong as it may be.

  110. If you re-read the article you will see that the polling did include the Coalition+Bloc question. Thanks for trying though.

  111. We have decoder rings and everything.

  112. I thought the only motivation for the coalition was the threat to eliminate party per-vote subsidies. Mixing our messages, I think.

    Harper put us into a structural deficit before the economic crisis. He cut taxes, but didn't cut spending accordingly. He, instead, ramped up spending even faster than Martin or Chretien before him. He elected instead to borrow that money from our children–that is, he raised taxes on the future. How, as a conservative, can you be happy with his performance? The only thing I can imagine is keeping CPC supporters going is the promise that they'll finally get what they want if Harper only had a majority. But then, it basically concedes that Harper has an agenda that he isn't being forthright about, and will only reveal once he has his majority government. His base knows this, and they will expect it to come to pass once he has his majority. Why else would they remain loyal to someone who has betrayed everything Reform was about?

  113. You're really trying to play that you don't know the difference between a choice of two options and a choice with more than two?

    What are you talking about??? What I said makes perfect sense. The majority of Canadian voters didn't vote for the party that formed the government in 1988, 1993, 1997, 2000, 2004, 2006, or 2008, and they probably won't in 2011.

  114. The only one in this election is your leader's plane : the No Question Air.

  115. No; that's a little thing called "the bandwagon effect." it's letting others think for them and then following.

    And the excess reliance on polls by the media is lazy journalism.

  116. I'm sorry. I didn't realize that this was "quote irrelevant fact" day.

    You'll note what I pointed out wasn't anything to do with who they voted for. It was for who they voted *against*. This is the key difference, and what you were trying to sweep under the carpet with your response.

    Yes, few parties come to power in Canada with a majority of the vote. However, before the defense has always been that we can't really say that a majority of Canadians actively voted against the party that came into power.. that would be the reply of "Well the Liberals only got 26%" or whatever. No, they weren't voting against the CPC, they just preferred someone else more. Well.. now we can specifically that a majority of people in Canada actively do not want the CPC, in particular, to be our government.

    So how is it a good thing if because of a quirk of our system, they become the government?

  117. What do you think has occurred that will cause more people to vote CPC this time than last time?

  118. Polls are taking the place of talking to neighbours. They create a "bandwagon effect" for some. For others, the polls seem to be a substitute for voting; I've met many people who have said "Why bother voting? We already know who is going to win."

    Between these two polling effects, it strikes me that polls are actually harmful to the democratic process. Many people – me being one – are worried about the ever-decreasing number of people showing up at the polls. I think baning public disclosure of polling numbers during elections will increase participation and get more prople voting.

  119. I think you've done a good job in getting Denis to admit that Harper was pushed by the opposition [almost typed coalition there] into borrowing. Lve aside whether they would have borrowed more [ they would have also spent it differently – possibly better?] Libs need to fix on one message – yes Harper put us into deficit and we made him cuz it was necessary, and drop the hypocrtical Harper is solely responsible for it all[ of course in the final anlysis as head of the govt he has to answer for that choice] Where lbs need to put their emphasis is [ as you say] he did this while irresponsibly cutting taxes – we would not have done that [ hence we would arguably have not borrowed as much, or been free to invest as well. It's a distinction that has to be made, but made coherently.

  120. "Why did Wherry not say that a MAJORITY of Canadian oppose the idea of a coalition forming government? I guess we'll never know. "

    If you'd bothered to watch the video you'd have found your answer. The statistically equal figure include the bloc, the first set does not. It's a badly written article. The really interesting question is did MI make a mistake in ruling out all coaltions, instead of solely with the bloq – which was of course a must? Now he has to rely on NDP supporters fearing a con majority. I'm not sure how many people outside of political junkies get that they will have a shot at power anyway if only they can prevent a tory majority.

  121. Wait, wait, you can’t judge an election by one poll.

    I mean Iggy is at or near 40% just like Harper in that poll…..

    …oh no wait, Iggy rock bottom and Harper’s hovering around the 40% mark in every poll taken of late. And Wherry and the rest of the Iggy supporters in the media (and here on the comments thread) are pretending Iggy’s kicking Harper’s butt (what, because crowds at Iggy’s rallies cheer for him…like they don’t do that for Harper or every other candidate on the campaign trail since time immemorial). Comedy gold! Thank you Liberal supporters (including Wherry of course) for making this the…

    Best

    election

    ever.

  122. 155.

  123. sarcasm and ridicule…………………nice…and expected

  124. We have one right wing party and 3 essentially centre left parties. If more Canadians vote for a centre left party but the largest share of votes go to the right wing party without adding up to a majority of Canadians (under 50%) then it is completely justifiable democratically for a coalition of the left of centre parties to form a coalition if they cam agree on common ground to do so. Support of the block might be required but as long as the blocks support was ad hock and not part of a formal coalition there is little difference between that situation and a conservative minority relying on block support for some measures. As has happened. If most Canadians favor left of centre approaches even if this vote splits between several parties than it's not undemocratic for the country to be governed by the common ground shared by those parties. .

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