Time to make election forecasts.

Here comes the promised forecast.  It is more difficult than expected.  We are guessing that the Harper Conservatives will keep the minoritymobile running on empty for at least another two years.

But we expect the results of this campaign will cost Mr. Harper his job.  In two years, we are likely to have new leaders of all four major parties.  The Conservative and Liberal parties will change for the obvious reasons while Layton could be out because of his health and Gilles Duceppe because he has run his course. Canadian politics will be a very different ballgame at that time.

The key in this election is Ontario.  Without the breakthrough he needs in the Greater Toronto Area, Harper cannot pull it off.  In communicating with people in all parts of the province, we learn that there are not likely to be any dramatic changes.  Sure the Conservatives might win a seat in Brampton but they can just as easily lose the seat they were confident of in Babel (Barrie).  Nothing looks remotely like changing in Eastern Ontario.  The South West seems locked in a death grip.

The only thing fluid in the North is the beer in which the Conservatives will be crying after the election.  Best guess is that the Conservatives will come out of Ontario with a net loss of about four seats.  The Liberals will not be happy to only have some 43 seats in Ontario after the election but that is more than they had when they started.

The major shift of the election could be in Quebec.  Gilles Duceppe is tiring and there is little likelihood that his Bloc can hold more than 42 seats in the next house.  The Liberals could surprise everyone and come back with a total of 20 seats there.  It just means another small loss there for Mr. Harper.

The rest of the country has incremental wins and losses but the outcome will still be minor losses for Harper and minor gains for Michael Ignatieff.  Neither is a winner.  At the end of the game, Harper wins 130 to 135 seats and holds on to the government.  Liberals in the high 80s will not save Michael’s job.   And Jack Layton will not win enough seats to be able to support the Liberals taking over.  It leaves the Bloc in the catbird seat.

The one hope we have in this election is the younger voters.  They are annoyed.  They dislike Stephen Harper and they distrust him.  Ridings in major college areas could have some scares if not some outright upsets.  Combined with the women’s vote in those ridings, change can happen.  More women need to look harder at Mr. Harper and wonder why any woman would vote for as cold a fish as that.

On a more personal note, we feel sorry for Michael Ignatieff.  He disappointed many of us in the debates.  If only more people had seen his ‘Rise Up’ speech, we could have a revolution.  We need it!

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Complaints, comments, criticisms and compliments can be sent to  peter@lowry.me

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