Monday, September 29, 2008

A Conservative Majority?

No, I'm not talking about the Conservative conference here!

I'm actually talking about the Canadian general election, who go to the polls in a little over a fortnight.

One of the interesting talking points is whether Stephen Harper's Conservative party will be able to ensure a majority government, in contrast to what might be a coalition Liberal/NDP government, as suggested by NDP leader Jack Layton .

Last week's polls by IPSOS suggested that the Conservatives will be closer to reaching the magic '155' than in the previous parliament, partly because the anti-Conservative vote will be split in so many different directions between the four opposition parties.

IPSOS polls suggest 153 seats for the Conservatives (up 26 on the last parliament), with the Liberals going down to 86 (down 12) under new leader Stephane Dion, fighting his first election in charge of the Grits, with losses of 7 for the Bloc Quebecois (down from 48 to 41) and a drop of 3 for the NDP (from 30 to 27). 1 independent is predicted to hold onto their seat.

On a national polling level, the IPSOS poll gives the Conservatives 39%, with the Liberals sliding to 23%, NDP 18%, Greens on 11% and the Bloc on 8% nationally and 32% in Quebec itself, 8 points ahead of the Conservatives, their nearest challengers.

Note the difference between the Liberal, NDP and Green polling and their respective seat predictions.

In Atlantic Canada, where I lived for a time, the Liberals are well out in the lead, with 40% over the four provinces and the NDP and Conservatives level on 26% each.

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