Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Ten point Liberal lead not enough for majority

According to a recent EKOS poll, the Trudeau Liberals have a 10 point lead on Harper. Yet it’s not nearly enough to secure a majority government.

Game changer

Most Canadians probably don’t realize how much a united Conservative party changes the political landscape. Under primitive First-Past-the-Post, the Cons get a huge unearned advantage — all thanks to vote splitting.

Con vote split historically

Over the past 80 years, the conservative vote has usually been split. First between the PCs and Social Credit. Then among PCs and Reformers. This enabled the Liberals to become “Canada’s natural governing party” — even though the center-left vote was split between them and the NDP.

The conservative vote has only been united during two periods. First during the Mulroney era (he won 50% and 43% majority governments.) Now under Harper (he won three elections in a row, including a 40% majority in 2011.)

Unless the Wildrose party decides to go federal, the Conservatives are poised to become Canada’s new natural government party — even though the vast majority of Canadians are opposed to them.

Three-way vote splitting

The Green vote of 7% takes a big chunk out of the center-left, making vote splitting even more deadly. Even when the Liberals are riding high in the polls, it’s just not enough to put them in majority territory. ThreeHundredEight.com gives the breakdown:

National Voting Intentions

Here are voting intentions in percentage points:

Here are projected seats (majority 170 of 338):

Trudeau’s 10 point lead leaves him 30 seats short of a majority. And this is on a good day.

Long gone are the days of Chretien when he put together 3 Liberals majorities in a row.

Voting reform or bust

Ranked ballot required to ensure Canadians get a fair fight.

Unless we upgrade our voting system — like 91% of developed nations — the Cons are going to change the country beyond recognition (as promised.)

Justin Trudeau offers the quickest fix: Preferential Voting (ranked ballot.)

This will stop the Cons from winning center-left seats by letting Canadians vote “Anyone But Conservative.” Instead of the 7 points of Green vote being wasted on just one or two seats, the excess will go to the Liberals and NDP in alternative votes.

If we had this system in 2011, Harper would already be gone.

PR voting reform has all the bells and whistles. But considering it was rejected by BC, ON and PEI by over 60%, it’s safer to first fix our existing system with the ranked ballot.

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