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Thread: Canadian Election- The Campaign So Far

  1. #1

    Default Canadian Election- The Campaign So Far

    I JUST LOVE ELECTIONS! It's just like Christmas, all the colourful lawn signs,, people all excited, campaign workers knocking on your door singing Christmas carols (okay it's not quite like that).

    Anyway,I was wondering how my fellow Canucks were feeling about this, the longest election campaign we've ever had to live through. I must admit, I find it fascinating because it's the first time we've very had a three-way race in Canada, and surprisingly none of the parties have been able to pull ahead of the pack.

    I think the Conservatives are still in the game. They were completely thrown off message in the first half of the campaign, with their media events overshadowed by Mike Duffy and the Senate scandal, the recession numbers, The Syrian refugee crisis, and of course Pee-gate and other crazy candidates. I think their biggest misstep was failing to understand Canadian compassion over the image of that little boy's body being carried by a soldier. Rather than show empathy to refugees, they connected it to their platform for greater security as a reason to do nothing and it rightfully backfired. They've implemented some measures in the last few days, but I think their lack of response showed their true colours.

    The reason I think they're still in the game is because, even though their campaign got hijacked in the first half, the polls show them still running neck and neck with the other parties. The fact that they are still so close to the other parties after such a dismal start means they can still move ahead in the second half if they can stay on message. The Conservatives have always had their core support of voters who won't consider a 'second choice,' not to mention the fact that they have way more money to spend in the second half of the campaign than the other parties (a reason why they called for the extended campaign).

    I think Trudeau surprised me. I don't think he's performed exceptionally well but I expected more blunders and gaffes along the way. He 'sounds' like the former drama teacher that he is, and I found him to be shrill and annoying in the debates. I think the Liberal party has had to move to the left,primarily by the fact that they are the only party that is campaigning on running deficits for several years to stimulate the economy. They appear to be doing this to stake out their own territory after the NDP has moved to a more centrist position. This reminds me of our election in Ontario last year, when the Liberal, in a minority government, wrote a budget that was designed to secure NDP support and keep the government afloat for another year. When the NDP refused to support it, the Liberals ran on a left-leaning budget and the NDP were forced to campaign from a centrist position which disenfranchised many of their core party members. The Liberals benefitted and pulled off a surprising victory and re-established themselves with a majority government (note to self; having Hudak as an opposition leader also helped significantly). Anyway, I think federal Liberals might be hoping for a similar outcome at the federal level. Whether it will work or not, I don't know.

    The NDP has surprised me as well. When they formed the official opposition in the last election, I was wondering if they would be a one-shot wonder and find them themselves relegated back to their traditional third place status after the next election. They seem to be holding onto their support in Québec and building modestly in other areas, that they may even form government after the next election. I support the federal daycare program being proposed by the NDP and find it ironic that the Liberals would have the nerve to criticize it. The Libs ran every campaign since 1993 promising to bring in a universal daycare program and never brought in a single space during their entire thirteen years in power. I also don't support the NDP position that a Québec referendum would only require 50% +1 in order to separate from the country. I lived through the last referendum in 1995 where they very nearly reached that number, failing by less than one per cent. Although separatism isn't a big issue on the agenda right now, it may not always be that way, and the NDP promise may reignite the debate. I also find Mulcair has been somewhat vague on balancing the budget. At least the Liberals are upfront and saying they will run a deficit. I need to look over the platform more closely (I'm also not opposed to running a small deficit in order to preserve programs and services). I also find Mulcair is a little cagey on how he will appeal to the environmentalists in his party in regulating the oil sands, when there are a number of party members who only see shutting them down as a viable option. If he can at least bring back the environmental assessments to new projects that the Conservatives scrapped it would be a good start.

    I think the election victory might come down to the undecided voters. My feeling on this is that many of these people are likely vacillating between the Liberals and the NDP. The Conservatives have their core support but I don't think there is much more room for them to expand their base. I think a lot of Canadians are still unsure about the Liberals or the NDP, but they want desperately to get rid of Harper. The other significant factor in close races is which party is most organized at getting their supporters out to the polls on voting day.

    It's also possible that no party will pull ahead and this three way race will continue right up until election day, and we'll have a minority... something for a government. Then we might have to consider the possibility of the formation of a coalition government. Interesting times!

    Questions to consider (or ignore, say whatever you want)

    So how do you feel about the election so far?
    Has any party exceeded your expectations or disappointed you?
    How do you rate the performance of the leaders?
    Are there any campaign platforms you find appealing or bogus?
    What are the most important issues? Has any party addressed them to your satisfaction?
    Any predictions for election day?
    Last edited by Starrunner; 22-Sep-2015 at 01:28.

  2. #2


    I am undecided still. I would vote conservative if they had a different leader. Any party beside the cons winning means most of the power will be held by MPs from Quebec and Ontario who would gladly screw Alberta over.

    I live in Harper's riding so my vote matters very little; the party you vote for does not even get the $1.50 per vote anymore.

  3. #3


    Quote Originally Posted by WildRoseBaby View Post
    I am undecided still. I would vote conservative if they had a different leader. Any party beside the cons winning means most of the power will be held by MPs from Quebec and Ontario who would gladly screw Alberta over.

    I live in Harper's riding so my vote matters very little; the party you vote for does not even get the $1.50 per vote anymore.
    Yeah, Harper is not exactly the cuddliest leader we've ever had.

    I really think that all three parties have been disengenuous with the Canadian people about how they would manage the economy better.

    Conservative Leader Stephen Harper says he will 'stay the course' and he'll put more money in our pockets.

    NDP Leader Tom Mulcair says he has the best plan to trigger economic expansion.

    Trudeau at least admits he'll run a deficit, but it seems to be his answer to everything, and I highly doubt even his modest proposed deficit will cover his election promises.

    So much of the economy is based on global variables which are outside the control of any party.With falling oil prices, a low dollar and uncertainty caused by more foreign currency market problems, all three leaders may be relying on wishful thinking to fulfil their platform promises.

  4. #4


    I sent this letter into our local newspaper after all the media attention given to the Conservative party's decision to appeal the court ruling that upheld a woman's right to wear the niqab during the swearing-in ceremony for immigrants to become Canadian citizens.

    It is unfortunate to see the Conservatives use the niqab controversy as a way to express its support of women's rights and claiming to be fighting oppression.. The niqab is worn by a relatively small number of women in Canada, yet the Harper government has managed to turn it into a defining election issue of equality, while ignoring their own record of oppressing women in Canada. .

    Perhaps Canadians would be better advised to look at the Conservative government’s actual record on women's issues during its nine years in power and how they gutted the programs designed to lift women out of poverty,,domestic violence, and provide equity in the workforce. Throughout its time in power, the Conservatives have cancelled the Universal Daycare Program contract, cut funding to the Status of Women, eliminated the Court Challenges Program, introduced the Public Sector Equitable Compensation Act, which emptied the right for pay equity, left abortion out of Canada's G8 maternal health funding, voted against a National Strategy to End Violence Against Women, and appointed fewer women to cabinet than previous governments. In addition, the Conservatives are the only party that refuse to support an inquiry into the disproportionate number of murdered or missing Aboriginal women.

    The niqab issue represents a serious conversation that all Canadians must have regarding our sensibilities towards the equality of women, oppression, and cultural understanding. Lobbing it as a political grenade in the middle of an election campaign is not a sign of respecting the equality of a small number of women, but rather a tactic to divert attention from this government's record on the treatment of Canadian women in general.

  5. #5


    As an American here in your country, it's so shocking. I hear more about the US elections and they're not even for another year + . The coverage is very minimal. It's not like they're trying to hide stuff, it seems to me, but more like they just have less hype. What Adventurer calls the "house of commons" and I call "Canadian CSPAN" though sometimes looks like the living room in a reality show. People fight verbally, some people oohh and ahh, some people clap, they fight some more. Your politics are a real culture shock. From what I am hearing around these parts, it really does seem very undecided as you've said above. Interesting! And it's especially interesting that it's not a two party system here. You've got at least 3 parties right now with a really strong chance.

    Anyway, thanks for keeping us informed Starrunner! You know a lot more about this than I do. It's nice to read your thoughts.

  6. #6


    Hey, Frogsy,
    (I can't believe I'm saying that! I'm so glad you're back. I missed you)
    It's been more interesting than usual in Canada having a multi-party system. Traditionally the battle has been between the liberals and the conservatives, with the NDP often thought of as 'the moral conscience' but not a serious contender for power. However, under Jack Layton's leadership in 2011, they shot up to official opposition party status which in itself was a shock, and a big move forward. I wondered at the time if it would be a one-time deal and they return to their traditional third place in the next election. In this election, they started off really well, maintaining their support in Québec and building in the west. Unfortunately, they were always placing third in Ontario, which is our largest province, and then their support started to sink in Québec over the niqab debate. I think Mulcair took a principled stand on the issue, knowing his position was not popular, and his party is now paying the price. I think it's offensive to use this issie as a political wedge. As far as Québec goes, there were two women that refused to remove their niqab during the citizenship ceremony, and only fifty women who wear the niqab in Québec. It is unfortunate to see our government portray this as matter of oppression against women (see my post above) when what they are really doing is preying on the fears of Canadians by turning it into an issue of terrorism and Canadian values. It particularly appeals to racists who are anti-immigrant and further marginalizes immigrant women, all because of a conservative hit-and-run smear campaign. This is politics at its worst. Mulcair also took a principled stand in opposing Bill C-51 when it was first proposed by the conservatives and initially supported by the public (the support has faded since then and I believe Mulcai was proven right).

    Looking back at my first post, I may have been w-w-w-wrong (I have a hard time with that word) about Trudeau. My opinion of him hasn't changed, I still don't think he has two brain cells to rub together, but he seems to be avoiding putting his foot in his mouth and not engaging in the gaffe-prone behaviour I've come to expect from him. He is light on substance, particularly around foreign policy, and when pressed in an interview about how much his party's platform would cost, he couldn't answer the question and eventually told the reporter to get a calculator and add it up himself. Jeesh! I think he's all flash and no substance, but Canadians seem to buying it since he appears to be breaking away rom the pack (at least for now) while Mulcair and his party appear to continue their slide downward. There's still two weeks to go however, and that's an eternity in politics. I wouldn't rule out any of the parties at this point, I just REALLY want to see an end to Harper and his Neanderthals.

    The biggest problem with a multi-party parliament in a first-past-the-post electoral system is that any party can get a majority government without a majority of the vote. The conservatives won the last election with just under forty per cent of the vote, meaning the sixty per cent that voted against them are stuck with the result. I support the multi-party system, but like many, I believe the electoral process is in serious need of reform, preferably through mixed proportional representation, or at the very least, the progressives in this country need to work together to defeat Harper.,
    Last edited by Starrunner; 06-Oct-2015 at 23:50.

  7. #7


    I can't see getting any kind of proportunal representation in the near future posibly in my lifetime. If Harper can't bring in Senate elections with a majority in the House and Senate no one is likely to have any more luck with something huge like that. Making a major constitutional change like that would need a civil war or something of that magnitude to convince all the provinces to agree.

  8. #8


    Quote Originally Posted by WildRoseBaby View Post
    Making a major constitutional change like that would need a civil war or something of that magnitude to convince all the provinces to agree.
    You don't need all the provinces to agree, you only need seven (And the seven must represent at least 50% of the Canadian population).

  9. #9


    Try getting Quebec to agree to anything. They have more power than they would get under any fair system and are not keen to loose it.
    Last edited by WildRoseBaby; 07-Oct-2015 at 00:44.

  10. #10


    Quote Originally Posted by WildRoseBaby View Post
    Try getting Quebec to agree to anything. They have more power than they would get under any fair system and are not keen to loose it.
    So? o.O It's not like Quebec was invited to the Kitchen Accord in 1982.

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