Archive for September 20th, 2008
After about two weeks, it still looks like the Canadian election campaign has yet to take off. In horse race terms, it is still the Conservatives in the lead, though still short of a majority per the polls. The Liberals continue to bleed support to both the Greens and the NDP. The New Democrats are still pushing to pass the Liberals, but the odds remain against that outcome. The Bloc Quebecois’ support seems to have stabilized, but they remain focused on a negative campaign against Harper. The Greens are probably pleased with the media attention and poll support they have been receiving, but still are not assured of a single seat in Parliament.
Policy wise, all the parties are now having to factor the U.S. economic mess into their campaign messages. This helps the Conservatives, because Harper has not shown himself to be completely incompetent. There have been Conservative (or Progressive Conservative) Canadian governments in the past, and though “Tory time are hard times” may be a truthful statement, the Liberals don’t seem prepared to manage a euchre tournament, let alone one of the world’s leading national economies. Dioon has now made things worse for himself and his party by declaring that the Green Shift carbon tax is no longer a major Liberal platform plank.
The NDP, having never formed a federal government, don’t have a Canada wide record of economic management to point to. If they had had a chance to form an official opposition, this would not matter as much.
The Bloc and the Greens are not hurt as much as the other three parties because neither of them even pretends to be running for government.