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In Calgary-Centre, Unite the Left may not have worked.

There will be some who feel that if the anti-CPC vote had coalesced around 1 candidate last night, Joan Crockett might not be going to Ottawa, which she narrowly did over Liberal Harvey Locke. In fact, 63% of those who did vote (and it was a rather pathetic 29% turnout, the worst of the 3 ridings) voted against her and the CPC.

I’m not so sure that would be the case. If a lot of the disgruntled “Red Tory” or “Alison Redford” voters went to the Greens.. there’s no guarantee they would have gone to the Liberals. Would Liberal voters have voted Green if Turner was the sole candidate? No way to know that either.There are going to be many instances where co-operation or coalition may help defeat the CPC.. I’m just not sure last night in that riding was one of them.

At any rate, I will be very interested to see what role the CPC gives Joan Crockett; if it’s a front-line role in the spotlight, she will have to avoid Rob Anders type explosive outbursts (which she showed hints of in the debates); because I don’t think that will cut it in this riding.

As a noted CPC supporter and friend of mine said to me this morning, the CPC may have it’s work cut out for it in this riding in the next general election.

As for the others, no surprise that the CPC would win in Bev Oda’s old riding with her and her scandals gone, and that riding having trended Conservative the last decade – they had no incentive to not vote CPC. It WAS a real surprise that the Greens almost knocked off the NDP out west. A rather good night for the Green Party, even though they didn’t win. I’ve seen some Green disappointment last night they didnt get as much turnout of the Nenschi voters as they thought they were going to get.. but they did do fine, all things considered.


7 comments to In Calgary-Centre, Unite the Left may not have worked.


    Scott, I’m not sure I totally agree, but I see what you’re saying. Chris Turner makes a similar point in the Globe and Mail, noting that his support may have come from NDP, but also inactive citizens who wouldn’t have voted for anyone else as well as the ~10% who vote Green typically in that riding.

    Regardless of the level of support for a single progressive, non-Con candidate in some ridings, it’s undeniable that if low-information voters are presented with two options instead of 4, they are statistically more likely to elect the non-Con in enough ridings Canada wide to change who our Prime Minister is. That will make a big difference on who sits in the Senate, our courts, and orders the RCMP around from the PMO. If Liberals, Greens and NDP don’t co-operate as we did for a short time in 2008, prior to 2014, it will be maddening to watch Harper’s popularity crater, but us lose another election (not that the last was a clean loss, but even a stolen election is still a loss).

  • To recollect that old comment, the Liberals campaign from the left and govern from the right. That (I guess) makes them centrist? Not left. But not as far right as the Tories.

    I don’t see good evidence that the NDP is, as you say, corporatist. It is easily to the left of the other parties (including the BQ, which has been drifting right recently). You may prefer some party further left, but I don’t see a viable option there.

  • MoS

    @ Stephen – and do you see the LPC as representing the ‘left’? Both the Libs and the New Democrats are now corporatist, the Libs staunchly so. Both are avowed supporters of the Tar Sands even as they pay lip service to opposing the Northern Gateway. Canada has become a classic petro-state and we have oodles of petro-pols on both sides of the floor of the House of Commons. There is nothing remotely progressive in that. And when did you last hear a Liberal vow to reverse the growing inequality problem in Canada? You don’t get to call yourself ‘progressive’ because you’re not a Harper Conservative. That dark farce is wearing much too thin.

  • CuJoYYC

    Two words: Preferential Ballot

  • I don’t know why people persist in representing the Green party as ‘left’. There’s no particular evidence to justify such a characterization, and m uch Green policy seems (to me at least) as intent on coddling industry as it does on (the far more important) environmental concerns that led to the formation of the party.

    • Because it’s a common idea that environmental issues are a partisan “left” issue, instead of a human issue vital to all humans (who tend to make up political parties of all sorts). Also, there’s the whole notion of ensuring everyone has an equal right to life, etc. so there really is global evidence that Greens hold a lot of left wing values.

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