January 15, 2006


Martin facing a scrap at home
(ELIZABETH THOMPSON, January 15, 2006, Montreal Gazette)

Prime Minister Paul Martin could be in trouble in his own Montreal riding of LaSalle- Emard, Bloc Quebecois leader Gilles Duceppe suggested yesterday.

Speaking to reporters during a campaign stop to support Bloc candidate May Chiu, Duceppe said the Bloc's internal polling shows the riding - which Martin has won handily in the last few elections - has turned into a tight race.

Grits may fall to No. 3: Tory seats may exceed 185 (Douglas Fisher, 1/15/06, Toronto Sun)

Many have suggested, particularly since the last televised debates, that if polling continues to show a Conservative lead as wide as 10 points over the Liberals, Harper might end up with a majority. I had said this even before last week's debates, because I saw and heard many small things that reminded me of the final days of two earlier election campaigns -- those of 1958 and 1984, when Progressive Conservative leaders (John Diefenbaker and Brian Mulroney) suddenly shot past what had looked like narrow wins over the Liberals (Mike Pearson and John Turner) to roll up majority totals.

I would concede, however, that thus far there have only been hints of voters worshipping Harper. The scenario is still much more that the public that has lost its patience with Martin, seeing him as the empty head of an arrogant, partisan gang who have been at the federal trough too long.

Still, let me be an early bird again this week by suggesting it is not impossible that the determination among Canadians to have a change in government may well produce something truly phenomenal. Not just a finish which has the Conservatives holding 185-200 seats, but one that consigns the Liberals to fourth place in the House of Commons ranking -- behind both the Bloc Quebecois and the New Democrats!

Posted by Orrin Judd at January 15, 2006 10:46 AM

From the article:

One slight indication that New Democrat attitudes are changing came last week when Layton joshed that Martin wants Canadians to believe that if the Liberals don't win, "the sun won't rise, spring won't come, and volcanoes will destroy the Earth."

This is a departure for the NDP. They and their CCF predecessors have historically viewed the Tories or whoever was on the right as Public Enemy One . This article of NDP faith has gotten them nowhere.


Perhaps the time is at hand when the New Democrats, working hard in a parliament led by Conservatives, will be able to show that they, not the Liberals, deserve recognition as the alternative governing party.

Last week Layton was in Vancouver pushing the Corrupt Liberals bit, and I think I even saw an NDP TV ad on the CBC with the same subject.

Posted by: Raoul Ortega at January 15, 2006 3:13 PM