Does Bagnell's defeat open up space for the Yukon NDP in the future?

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Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture
Does Bagnell's defeat open up space for the Yukon NDP in the future?

The assumption was that, as long as Larry Bagnell, a relative left-Liberal, held onto the Yukon riding, there was little chance that the Dippers could make a comeback.  Can this change now that a presumably hard-right Harperbot has taken the seat?

This thread is at your (Robert) Service for any discussion of that question.

 

Krago

Despite winning 102 ridings, the NDP holds just one of the nine seats they won in 1993 (Burnaby-Kingsway).

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

I think you've posted that before.  How is that a response to this thread?

iceman

Kevin Barr (NDP) didn't stand a chance as he got the nomination after the writ was dropped. He has a fairly high profile but the lack of time to get his message out really did him in. John Stricker (Green) has been running since the last election showing up at events and writting letters to the paper. Ryan Leef (Con) had an incredible organization behind him in the form of the Yukon Party. They wanted Larry out badly and were willing to do anything and pay anything to do that. Larry ran on his likability which just wasn't enough to over come the 3rd party ads and the attack ads from the other side. Curiously, we were never told who was behind those ads, just various groups that were friends of the Yukon and worried that we new the truth out the election! Leef says he is going to represent the values of all Yukoners. Right, as long as we agree with his view point.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

And if you DON'T agree with his view point, you might want to have a few long guns around the house-since people who vote Tory don't always take peaceably to the idea that anyone has the right to disagree with them.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

Also, in 1993 the Yukon was the NDP LEADER'S riding.  That was going to make it safer from defeat anyway.  The Yukon Dipper vote started slipping as soon as the riding passed to a backbencher.

Le T Le T's picture

 

Kevin Barr also had a great band.

Policywonk

Ken Burch wrote:

Also, in 1993 the Yukon was the NDP LEADER'S riding.  That was going to make it safer from defeat anyway.  The Yukon Dipper vote started slipping as soon as the riding passed to a backbencher.

No. Audrey would have won regardless of whether she was Leader, simply because she was that good and popular an MP (note that she won big in 1988 (with a higher percentage of the vote but a lesser margin of victory) after a bit of a squeeker win in the 1987 byelection). Louise Hardy won with 29% in a ridiculous 4 way split and had great difficulty living up to Audrey's example as an MP, but still lost by a very small margin to Bagnell even though her vote percentage increased. The NDP still finished second in 2004 and 2006, but the decline of the territorial NDP due to Todd Hardy's health problems was a major factor in the poor showing in 2008. The Party increased its vote share significantly this election but still finished just behind the Greens. The Greens were not a factor at all before the 2004 election, which was the first one they ran a candidate in. I suspect that without incumbancy going for the Liberals the NDP will once again become the main alternative federally to the Conservatives in the Yukon.

Le T Le T's picture

Speaking of Audrey, did anyone else notice that in Stephen Lewis' interview with Democracy Now he listed every NDP leader from Tommy Douglas by name up until Broadbent and then said "then there were two women leaders" and then Jack Layton.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

Not surprising.  He's probably still somewhat resentful that he wasn't just HANDED the leadership by acclamation, no questions asked...which, from what I've heard, were the only terms under which Lewis would even consider standing for it.  He wasn't going to be stupid enough to say "how dare a mere WOMAN take what was rightfully MINE?" But you have to know he'd be thinking that.

In hindsight, does anyone still think Stephen Lewis was ever politically magical enough to have actually deserved that kind of deference?

Aristotleded24

ghoris wrote:
I came to the conclusion that the NDP's seat gains outside of Quebec in this election were actually rather modest. The party elected 44 MPs outside of Quebec, which is actually slightly worse than Ed Broadbent did in 1988 as a proportion of seats in the House. There was only a net gain of 8 seats outside Quebec - not that impressive when the NDP was running a full 10 points ahead of 1988 and the Tories actually down a few points versus 1988.

For me, this underscores the need to do two things. One, consolidate the new gains in Quebec. If the NDP can't hold those seats (or at least a significant number of them) in the next election, it will be right back to third party status. Second, the NDP has to figure out how to better take the fight to the Tories in rural and Western Canada.

Yup. There is a great deal of talk about how Quebec is alienated with the rest of the country having elected a majority without them. While this alienation is legitimate, I'm sure you remember how there was similar alienation felt in Western provinces when the Liberals used to win majority governments without much representation out our way. Even if the NDP manages to win government without improving its standing in Western Canada, the Western Alienation/Separation crowd will be back about how Ontario and Quebec decide everything, there's nothing for the West, etc.

ghoris

Krago wrote:

Despite winning 102 ridings, the NDP holds just one of the nine seats they won in 1993 (Burnaby-Kingsway).

Ken Burch wrote:

I think you've posted that before.  How is that a response to this thread?

I think what Krago is getting at is that the NDP should have had a stronger performance here, given the seat's history (ie one of only nine that the NDP held in the 1993 near-wipeout). Others have suggested that it is similarly incongruous that in an election where the NDP wins 102 seats nationally, it has been shut out of Saskatchewan, despite the fact that 5 MPs were elected in the disaster of 1993.

I think this overlooks the fact that the NDPers who survived in 1993 (McLaughlin, Robinson, Riis, Nystrom, Axworthy, Solomon, De Jong, Althouse and Blaikie) were, for the most part, strong, reasonably-well-entrenched incumbents with some local popularity. From what I understand, the Yukon has historically voted more based on personality than some other places, and so incumbents are typically hard to dislodge: the territory has been represented by a grand total of 4 MPs in the last 45 years, only one of whom served only one term.

I was looking again at the numbers yesterday, and I came to the conclusion that the NDP's seat gains outside of Quebec in this election were actually rather modest. The party elected 44 MPs outside of Quebec, which is actually slightly worse than Ed Broadbent did in 1988 as a proportion of seats in the House. There was only a net gain of 8 seats outside Quebec - not that impressive when the NDP was running a full 10 points ahead of 1988 and the Tories actually down a few points versus 1988.

For me, this underscores the need to do two things. One, consolidate the new gains in Quebec. If the NDP can't hold those seats (or at least a significant number of them) in the next election, it will be right back to third party status. Second, the NDP has to figure out how to better take the fight to the Tories in rural and Western Canada.

ghoris

I don't personally remember the alienation of the 1980s (I was about three weeks old when Trudeau won his final term in 1980) but my parents certainly remember the 'bad old days' when they used to turn on the TV after the polls had closed only to be told that the election had already been won.  My dad often recalls when Western Canada's representation in the government consisted of Lloyd Axworthy and Bob Bockstael. So many people were leaving Manitoba in the 1970s for Alberta that people joked about the last person leaving turning out the lights. Of course, the NEP and the subsequent bust in the Alberta economy led to most of them returning to Manitoba in the early to mid-80s - many having literally walked away from their obscenely-high-interest rate mortgages in Alberta, which were secured by homes now worth half of what they paid for them.

Aristotleded24

ghoris wrote:
I don't personally remember the alienation of the 1980s

I was referring to the 1990s, primarily between 1997 and 2004.

ghoris

I guess it's just my Perimeter-itis again, but I don't recall much of a sense of Western alienation during that period, although I suppose my experience would have been different if I was living in a rural, bedrock-Reform Party area where people were really, really pissed off about the gun registry. During this period Manitoba (and Winnipeg in particular) was still regularly sending lots of Liberal MPs to Ottawa. My MP throughout that time period was a Grit, although my former riding is now super-safe for the Tories.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

ghoris wrote:

. . . the NDPers who survived in 1993 (McLaughlin, Robinson, Riis, Nystrom, Axworthy, Solomon, De Jong, Althouse and Blaikie) were, for the most part, strong, reasonably-well-entrenched incumbents with some local popularity.

 

Except that Lorne Nystrom actually finished THIRD in Yorkton-Melville, only returning to Parliament in Simon de Jong's former seat when Simon decided to retire.  The other survivor was Len Taylor - ironically in a seat which had a tradition of turfing incumbents after one term.

And BTW, John Solomon was not the incumbent going into 1993, although he was a reasonble well-entrenched MLA for part of the federal riding.

ghoris

You're right on both counts. Serves me right for making assumptions about Saskatchewan electoral history! ;)

Aristotleded24

ghoris wrote:
I guess it's just my Perimeter-itis again, but I don't recall much of a sense of Western alienation during that period, although I suppose my experience would have been different if I was living in a rural, bedrock-Reform Party area

There certainly is a difference between the urban and rural experiences.

hobyirwin

Talk about thread drift.

U turn and heading up stream!