Friday, September 12, 2008

Reason for optimism

For those wondering just how likely it is that the NDP might end up winning up to a dozen seats in Quebec as predicted by Thomas Mulcair, consider how the latest polling numbers compare to some of the results from 2006.

Recent polls have put the New Democrats as high as 18% in the province, with obvious room to grow within the province as the campaign progresses and the party's star candidates are introduced to voters.

In 2006, the Bloc, Cons and Libs between them split over 87% of the vote. The Cons, with 24.6% of the vote, won 10 seats; the Libs, with 20.7% of the vote, won 13 seats. And each won several landslides, suggesting votes that weren't as efficiently distributed as they could have been.

So if the NDP can even maintain its current polling numbers with the vote now split four ways, it's in effectively the same place that allowed the Libs and Cons to match Mulcair's targeted seat total in 2006. And if by some chance the NDP can keep pushing its numbers up, it may well be able to match another part of the Cons' 2006 performance in winning seats which it didn't even have on the radar when the campaign began.

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