Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Canada Continues to Need PR

Last night's vote count, and the number of seats that would entitle the parties to if all votes mattered: (Difference between theory and reality in brackets.)

Conservatives: 36.2% = 112 (-12)
Liberals: 30.2% = 94 (-9)
NDP: 17.5% = 55 (+16)
BQ = 10.5% = 33 (-18)
Green = 4.5% = 14 (+14)

Note that with PR the NDP would have the balance of power, but the Bloc wouldn't.

Some random election thoughts, in no particular order:

-Glad to see Paul Martin go. His fans may say his concession speech last night was "classy." If true, it would be the first classy thing Martin's done in years.

-Very, very glad to see Sam Bulte defeated. Sad to see Ignatieff elected.

-Gilles Duceppe should have to answer some questions in the future. For an election that started off with talk of the BQ sweeping all 75 seats in Quebec, last night's results are dismal.

-On that note, this country owes Harper's Conservatives a (small) thanks for making federalism a national, not a partisan issue.

-I don't want to piss all over Jack Layton's real success last night (Go Olivia!) but we need some serious questioning too. The NDP seems to be unable to get even 20% of the vote, despite a largely discredited Liberal party. Serious NDPers need to think hard about what that means, and how we can address that in the next election.

-Which brings me to the last point: I'm not afraid of what this means for this Parliament. The Conservatives have a government, but not a mandate for their most extreme policies. What worries me is the possibiliity that the next year or two will make the Conservatives look more reasonable than they really are, setting us up for a Conservative majority in 2008.

-Psst: Green Party - I hope you enjoyed your 18 months of relevance. Nice knowin' ya.

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