Friday, January 23, 2009

Do the NDP Have A Rae Problem?

I put a question mark here because this is based on out of writ polling which is notoriously unreliable and not worth the paper it's printed on. Worse, his analysis is also based on internals from out of writ polls which just have almost no validity. However, two polls now show the NDP well below 15% in Ontario. The Angus Reid poll dated January 17th shows Ontario as follows:

Tories: 42
Grits: 40
NDP: 12
Green: 5

The Ekos poll dated January 21st shows Ontario:

Tories: 38.8
Grits: 40.9
NDP: 10.5
Green: 9.7

Now, between the two polls the sample gets larger, so we start to be able to take this seriously. To give you an idea, the NDP got over 18% in Ontario last time out and over 19% in Ontario in 2006. That's a 33% drop at minimum if these number are correct. That's a game changer electorally. It's not a game changer necessarily because the NDP shed strong seats (although Olivia Chow can't be pleased), but because it makes the Liberals more likely to win some of those tight ridings they lost to the Tories in the last election. One of the reasons I take this seriously, aside from personal satisfaction, is that Ontarians take a not so favourable view of the NDP's ability to manage an economy in recession dating back to the Rae government of the early 90's. It would make some sense, that Ontarians would be less and less comfortable electing NDPers as the economy sags. The Ekos poll is bad for the NDP everywhere, the Angus Reid poll shows some strength out west where NDP governments are more common. Once again just something I've picked up on, I'm not saying it will carry into a future election. I mean the Ekos poll shows the Greens being strongest in Quebec where they've been traditionally very weak. Huge bowl full of salt on this one.


ADHR said...

Keep in mind that the ONDP is going to a leadership convention in March. If all goes as it should, that should give the party a chance to overcome Rae's shaky economic legacy. (Which, FWIW, is undeserved. Peterson screwed the province up, and whoever was coming after was going to have to make unpleasant decisions.)

Anonymous said...

What did everyone criticize Rae for?

Was it trying "spend his way out of a recession"?

The horror of deficit spending?

What are the Conservatives and Liberals planning to do now to get us out of THIS recession? Oh that's right.

The increase in the deficit at the federal level is going to be much higher in percentage terms than anything that happened under Bob Rae. And the Liberals support it now but condemn Rae for doing it then. How consistent! My how things change....

Aaron Ginsberg said...

I fail to see how the Ontario NDP electing their second post-Rae leader is going to change anything as far as people's memories go. It isn't about whether or not the Rae government's decision's in government were economically justified, it's that they were complete failures, at least in the eyes of most Ontarians. I'm not positing this theory out of purely thin air. I'm trying to explain a 33% drop in NDP support in the province of Ontario.

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