Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Polls indicate Progressive Conservatives should win Manitoba provincial election

Polls indicate that the Progressive Conservatives(PC) are far ahead of the reigning New Democratic Party (NDP) and the Liberals with the Manitoba provincial election a little more than a month away on April 19.

At dissolution the NDP held 35 seats, the Progressive Conservatives 19 and the Liberals just one. Two seats are vacant. The NDP went through a crisis last year when five cabinet ministers revolted and challenged the leadership of Greg Sellinger and resigned from his cabinet.. Sellinger won in a subsequent leadership review. While dissension appears to have lessened, a total of nine sitting NDP members are not running in this election,. Perhaps they see the writing on the wall.
Two recent polls show the uphill battle facing the NDP. A Forum Research Poll on March 13th showed: NDP, 22 percent of the vote; PC, 46 percent, and Liberals 23 percent The Green Party had 8 percent.. A Mainstreet Technologies poll on March12th showed: NDP, 27 percent; PC, 43 percent, with Liberals at 24 percent. The Greens had 7 percent. Both polls show the NDP is far behind the PC's. A January poll showed the PC's even higher at 52 percent. A CBC article on January 27 noted:The PCs led in Winnipeg with 46 per cent support, an increase of nine points. The NDP was down to 23 per cent, while the Liberals slipped six points to 21 per cent.The situation may have changed by now. The PCs dominate outside of Winnipeg, Brandon, and the north. The PCs win by large margins in most rural areas. The Liberals could win many more seats in Winnipeg this election. If NDP voters decide the Liberals are the best party to stop a PC victory, the NDP could lose many Winnipeg seats. However, a split between NDP and the Liberals in Winnipeg could end up with the PCs winning many more seats.
Among NDP members who have thrown in the towel is Jennifer Howard. As the CBC reports:The MLA for Fort Rouge said her priorities have changed since she had children, and she is choosing to spend more time with her family. Howard said she has taken a job in Ottawa that she declined to discuss and will be moving there with her wife, Tara Peel, and their two children, four-year-old Harry and eight-month-old Georgia.Howard was one of the five cabinet ministers who wanted Sellinger to resign. Howard was a student of mine at Brandon University, an A student. The NDP is losing her along with a number of other competent MLA's who are not running.
In the case of Howard, the NDP has been fortunate to attract a well-qualified candidate to run instead of Howard.in the Fort Rouge riding, Wab Kinew. Howard said of Kinew: "Whenever you contemplate leaving something, one of your big worries is who is going to be there, in whose hands do you leave all of the work, I know those things are going to be in good hands." Kinew is from the Onigaming First Nation in northwestern Ontario but is also associate vice-president of indigenous affairs at the University of Winnipeg. He is also a former broadcaster at the CBC. Kinew will be running against the new Liberal leader Rana Bokhari and PC candidate Audrey Gordon. Karine Levasseur, associate professor of political studies at the University of Manitoba said that the popularity of Kinew could help the NDP and challenge Liberal Leader Bokhari.
UPDATE: Here is some poll tracker data. The seat projections are dismal for the NDP with the PC's winning a huge majority.

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