New Brunswick Politics

2014: Year in Preview

Posted on by CalgaryGrit in Federal Politics, New Brunswick Politics, Ontario Politics, Quebec Politics, Toronto Municipal Politics | 7 Comments

We don’t know what will make headlines in 2014. After all, most political predictions are about as accurate as a Forum poll.

So I won’t try to guess how 2014 plays out, but here are a few things we can reasonably expect to see this year:

  • With the new electoral map coming into force, all parties will begin nominating candidates, as they gear up for the next election. And since the media loves election speculation, there will no doubt be more rumours of the 2015 election being moved up to 2014 – though I can’t imagine Harper would want to go to the polls before what figures to be a popular 2015 budget.
  • It’s likely that Robocon or the Senate Scandal will resurface at various points during the year. Moreover, senate reform could move to the forefront, especially if Harper decides to tack a referendum question onto the 2015 vote.
  • We know the Conservatives will introduce legislation on prostitution at some point this year, and you can be sure debate will continue to swirl around the Keystone pipeline.
  • We know there will be a by-election in Macleod, and we know the Conservatives will win it. More competitive will be Trinity Spadina, if and when Olivia Chow steps down to run for Mayor of Toronto.
  • Speaking of which, it seems likely that Rob Ford will continue to horrify and entertain us all right up to the October 27th municipal election. For one day at least, Torontonians will be right when they think the whole world is watching them.
  • New Brunswick has a fixed election date set for September 22nd. The Liberals, on the rise across the Maritimes and led by 31 year old Brian Gallant, are the favourites with a 2:1 edge over the ruling PCs in most polls.
  • Quebec and Ontario elections seem likely, and both should be hotly contested. Expect the PQ’s “Values Charter” to be a major election issue in Quebec, and transit funding to be front and centre in Ontario.
  • Provincial Unrest

    Posted on by CalgaryGrit in Alberta Politics, BC Politics, New Brunswick Politics, Newfoundland Politics, Nova Scotia Politics, Ontario Politics | 11 Comments
    Alison Redford, after seeing her latest poll numbers.

    Alison Redford’s approval ratings have fallen to “Stelmachian” levels

    Angus Reid has released their quarterly Premier approval ratings. As per usual, Brad Wall is more popular than God, and everyone else is a little more human:

    Wall (SK): 64% approve, 28% disapprove
    Alward (NB): 41% approve, 50% disapprove
    Selinger (MB): 38% approve, 49% disapprove
    Wynne (ON): 36% approve, 37% disapprove
    Marois (QC): 33% approve, 62% disapprove
    Dexter (NS): 30% approve, 62% disapprove
    Redford (AB): 29% approve, 66% disapprove
    Clark (BC): 25% approve, 67% disapprove
    Dunderdale (NL): 25% approve, 73% disapprove

    While Wall’s number sticks out, there are a few other interesting tid-bits from this poll:

    1. Obviously enough, these numbers spell bad news for Darrell Dexter and Christy Clark, who are both heading into elections considerably less popular than the opposition leaders trying to defeat them. Still, it’s worth recalling that this same poll found just 19% of Ontarians approving of McGuinty a mere 10 weeks before re-electing him in 2011. Sometimes you can win without being loved.

    2. The danger may be less imminent in Newfoundland and Alberta, but the Tory dynasties in both provinces must be feeling a bit like the New York Yankees this season – it’s far too early to count them out, but you have to wonder if this is the begining of the end.

    Redford’s numbers are right around where Ed Stelmach’s were when the Tory establishment mounted a putsch 2 years ago. Like Stelmach, Redford won with little caucus or establishment support, and has struggled to keep up with the Wildrose fundraising machine.

    I don’t think the Tories will or should force her out, but when your approval rating is below Raj Sherman’s, you need to at least watch your back.

    3. A lot of Ontarians still haven’t made up their minds about Kathleen Wynne.

    4. The most surprising finding, at least for me, was that the Premier of New Brunswick is named David Alward. Who knew?

    Provincial Matters

    Posted on by CalgaryGrit in BC Politics, New Brunswick Politics, Newfoundland Politics, Nova Scotia Politics, PEI Politics, Quebec Politics, Saskatchewan politics | 10 Comments

    Charest stands a better chance running against this guy, than against Pauline Marois and Francois Legault

    Your Friday morning coast-to-coast link roundup:

    Atlantic Canada: CRA’s quarterly poll numbers have been released, showing the PCs up by 12 in New Brunswick and the NDP up by just 2 in Nova Scotia. The PEI headlines scream about “plunging” satisfaction with the Ghiz government, but the Liberals still lead 20 points – I think most Premiers would be happy if their numbers plunged to those depths. In Newfoundland, the PCs still lead by 16 points, but that’s a far cry from the old days when Danny Williams routinely polled over 100%.

    Quebec: Expect protests on the streets of Montreal to continue through the summer, as negotiations between embittered students and the Quebec government have broken off. Far be it from me to tell Jean Charest what to do, since the man has repeatedly proven himself to be a modern day Lazarus, but if I were him I’d roll the dice and call an election on this issue. Even if the public is mixed on his handling of the protests, it’s a chance for him to look strong and make the election about an issue he could potentially win on.

    Saskatchewan: Nothing to see here – everyone still loves Brad .

    British Columbia: At the other end of the “most popular Premiers” poll is Christy Clark, who has taken to explictly criticizing Angus Reid. Perhaps the situation isn’t as dire as the polls suggest, but it’s been over a year since any pollster showed Clark ahead and four different companies confirm double-digit leads for the NDP. We’re still a year away from the BC election, but that incumbent winning streak we’ve heard so much about is going to be seriously put to the test (if not before then in Nova Scotia or Quebec).

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