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Ontario Election Post-Mortem. ON Election 2018=Fed Election 2011

Some thoughts/observations on last night’s result;

The NDP had momentum 2 weeks ago, but obviously lost it at the end, as their final percentage of votes was 3-5% lower then most final polls had predicted. (I believe Ekos and Mainstreet were the closest in their final polling of NDP numbers.).  The end result reminded me of the Federal Election in 2011, where Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff floundered, the NDP of Jack Layton then for a brief time looked like big challengers, only to fade down the stretch.

What happened?

  • I think that some of the NDP’s candidates being highlighted for radical positions did not help, (while Ford’s candidates problems didn’t seem to affect his polling), nor did Horwath failing to counter PC and Liberal attacks on her position towards legislating strikes back to work.
  • The Liberals ended up at around 19%. While it still only gave the party 7 seats and a loss of official party status, the core Liberal vote stuck with the Liberals, and the vote percentage  was high enough to cost the NDP several seats.  It also appears  moderate/centrist voters were not convinced to switch to  the NDP  either, and chose to hold their noses and vote for the PC’s, even with Ford as leader.

Some other thoughts;

= The fact some are saying the Liberals did better then expected (ie getting 7 seats as compared to only 1 in some riding predictions) shows you how bad of a night it was for the party, now without official party status in the legislature.  There will need to be some reflection done; some cleaning house and bringing in new people is needed. Perhaps no one who was leader could have prevented a defeat last night after being in power for 15 years, but the damage done could have perhaps been lessened, and the campaign strategy a lot different.

– Congrats to the Green Party, who elected their first ever MP to the legislature from Guelph (my old alma mater), their leader Mike Schreiner.  We again see parallels to the 2011 Federal Election; The Green Party gets their leader elected; a historic election where they elect a candidate to the Legislature/Parliament. when ironically, as back in 2011, a government is elected with a very hostile attitude to the environment or environmental policy. I believe Mr. Schreiner will have plenty of opportunities to call out the new Ford government on this.

What now?

Well, we will now see what Ford and his party were not prepared to show in the election campaign; how they intend to pay for all their promises – which if implemented will grow the deficit a lot larger then what the NDP or Liberal platforms would have.

We’ll also not be done with the complaints over stuff like the 407 data breach, where apparently up to a quarter of the PC Party’s candidates are being investigated, and a lot of other things.   Doug Ford may not be exactly Trump, but he governs and campaigns like him and isn’t too concerned over such trivial things as policy or norms.  I think unless his “team” moderates his behaviour and impulses, you’re going to see a circus in Queens Park – maybe not the 3-ring circus as in the White House, but still a bit of a soap opera.

In closing, I leave you with this quote that got posted by Adam Goldenberg, who has worked on campaigns over the years:

“Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard.” — H. L. Mencken

Buckle up everyone.

 

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