It might not rhyme but there is nothing more exciting than a bunch of by-elections. And June is my favourite month for them. Warm, sunny weather gets the political canvassers moving. It’s a super month for getting out the vote. And we’ve got a great mix: four federal by-elections and a big city mayoralty.
And nobody is sneering at the Toronto mayoralty. Where else would you get over 100 candidates. (I think it is just a rumour that one of the candidates is a dog.) When you figure that the Toronto mayor gets paid close to $200,000 per year, you would think there would be more citizens who would want the job.
But we have four federal by-elections a week before the Toronto event. And you don’t often have a pissed-off conservative retiree out stumping for a liberal successor. That is in Oxford riding in Ontario. It is just another misstep by leader Poilievre putting his candidate into the once considered safe conservative seat.
That would be the same as the liberals feeling insecure in the absolutely safe liberal NDG-Westmount riding in Montreal that has been occupied by MP Marc Garneau for the past 15 years. It is an honourable retirement for Marc. Another liberal is expected to replace him.
And that little worm Poilievre has more to worry about than just Oxford in Ontario. The late Jim Carr’s riding of Winnipeg-South-Centre, despite some high jinks to do with an enlarged number of names on the ballot, is expected to stay liberal.
It is former conservative MP Candice Bergen’s Manitoba riding of Portage-Lisgar that might bite Pierre on the bum. Peoples’ Party leader Maxime Bernier is working his little heart out to win that riding. A really down and dirty fight between Bernier’s extreme right-wing peoples’ party and the conservatives could split the right and elect a NDP or even a liberal.
The only race where the NDP are even at play is in the Toronto mayoralty. And it has little to do with party politics. There is this six or seven-person clump of candidates that has only one NDP facing off with a bunch of conservatives and a liberal. The problem is that more prospective voters know the NDP candidate’s name. It is this name recognition that is confusing the pollsters. They think that if they report that a has-been like Chow is in the lead frequently enough, it will become a self-fulfilling prophecy. Personally, I always like to surprise the pollsters.
Copyright 2023 © Peter Lowry
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