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Election Results, Thoughts

And so another Canadian election comes to an end. Not really, of course, as the analysis of the election will go on now for weeks at least. So what came out of this election? Well, let's see...

The Conservatives have another *censored!* minority government.

Stephane Dion proved to be an inept Liberal leader.

The Bloc Quebecois found themselves in a good position.

Jack Layton's NDP needs to rethink it's marketing strategy even though they ended up with 8 seats more than they had last time.

The Green Party fell apart, and party leader Elizabeth May didn't win her riding because of the split vote. That's all right though, because she'll bounce right back.


So here we are with another minority Conservative government, exactly what we've had after the last two elections, and Harper seems to think he can run the country effectively this way. Hopefully, the next election will be in about two years, if we're lucky. *sigh*

Comments

( 9 comments — Leave a comment )
absinthe_dot_ca
Oct. 15th, 2008 02:47 pm (UTC)
I think I see the method in his madness...
At first, I didn't know what Harper was hoping to achieve in this. It was practically a foregone conclusion that a Conservative minority was going to be the end result, and he said as much going in. So on the surface he didn't seem to accomplish much, and in a way he may have hurt himself, since the Liberals will almost certainly replace Dion with somebody who actually has a personality now.

However, I think I understand now, after some thought. It had been close to three years since the last election, and the opposition had been starting to make noises that they could take the Harper government down. So he did it himself, and gave the opposition a $300 million (widely quoted cost of the election) bitch-slap. Now he probably has two more years, during which time there's about a 95% odds that the economic news will get better.

Strategically, I still don't think this election made a whole hell of a lot of sense, but tactically, I think the opposition gave Harper exactly what he wanted. Again.
jkahane
Oct. 15th, 2008 04:18 pm (UTC)
Re: I think I see the method in his madness...
While I see the logic in your madness :), given how much this election cost the Canadian taxpayer, it isn't consoling to know that we literally paid to vote in the same minority government (give or take a seat or three) again.
absinthe_dot_ca
Oct. 15th, 2008 04:25 pm (UTC)
Re: I think I see the method in his madness...
It's not consoling to us, no, but I imagine Mr Harper slept very well indeed last night. He is basically in the same place he was in 2006 - the other parties know they're not strong enough to take him in an election, so he's got another year (more likely two) to pretty much do as he wants and drag the opposition with him.
waiwode
Oct. 15th, 2008 03:28 pm (UTC)
Here's the thing.

The minute that you have a third, fourth, and fifth party that can eat up 35% of the vote between them and can win over a quarter of the seats (and that's the critical part), you are almost assured of a minority government. This has been the pattern in European democracies for almost seventy-five years, and has been a long time coming.

The only exception to this is going to be a major scandal or a whole series of reversals. And I don't mean "Harper promised this or that" stuff ... that's going to happen during every election.

Look at the combination of recession, government scandal, introduction of the GST, soaring unemployment and record deficit of the Progressive Conservatives, combined with the retirement of a charismatic bilingual PC leader able to win votes in Quebec before the '93 election where the PCs sunk to 2 seats from 169, basically destroying a party that had won a record 211 seats in 84.

At best, anti-Conservatives could have expected a Liberal minority ... but honestly, I think the scandals of previous Liberal governments and a leader who doesn't come across as charismatic on tv contributed to their decline this election.

Doug.
jkahane
Oct. 15th, 2008 04:19 pm (UTC)
I can't really argue with anything you said above, Doug, simply because it's pretty much accurate. More's the pity. :(
absinthe_dot_ca
Oct. 15th, 2008 04:23 pm (UTC)
Clarification
here we are with another minority Conservative government, exactly what we've had after the last two elections - to clarify, the last two have been minorities, but only one of those was Conservative. The other just looked that way.
tcpip
Oct. 16th, 2008 05:21 am (UTC)
Canada needs preferential voting. Le Bloc, the Liberals, the NDP and the Greens must all start pushing for this now.
jkahane
Oct. 16th, 2008 02:05 pm (UTC)
Maybe so, but I suspect that this isn't going to happen. Besides, right now they're dealing with the fallout (if one can call it that) from the election, so...
dewline
Oct. 17th, 2008 01:37 am (UTC)
And even the New Conservatives aren't going to consider themselves to be sitting comfortably in the catbird seat, even if - as some suspect - that Harper's waging a war of fiscal attrition against the Liberal Party.
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