Thursday, June 23, 2011

A Few 2015 Election Scenarios

So UBC has an election calculator for 2015. You key in vote movement from one party to another and it gives you a new seat count. Thought I'd play around with it. My 'the NDP performs well, the Conservatives perform adequately, and the others tank' calculation went like this:
  • The Liberals retain only half their vote, with 25% going to the NDP and the remainder split evenly between the Tories and the Greens.
  • The Bloc also retain only half their vote, with 25% going to the NDP and the remainder split evenly between the Tories and the Greens.
  • The Greens split in half, with half of their 2011 vote going to the NDP and the other half staying with them.
  • The Tories retain 90% of their support, with 10% shedding to the NDP.
  • The NDP keep every one of their 2011 votes.
  • One-third of 2011 non-voters starts voting NDP.
This would be, as you can see, a great improvement for the NDP. Unrealistically great, you could say. In fact, it would result in a sad 3.0% for the Bloc, an improved 5.1% for the Greens, a horrid 9.5% for the Liberals, a pretty-similar 39.1% for the Tories, and an astounding 43.2% for the NDP - in first place by four percent.

But here's the kicker: according to the UBC model, that would be a majority government... for the Conservatives. It would be a strictly bipartisan parliament with not a single Liberal, Bloc or Green MP, the NDP would bet 144 seats, anf the Tories would get 164, losing only three and maintaining a comfortable majority.

Surprising, eh? One could imagine how loud the electoral-reform talk would be in such a circumstance. It'd look like this:
  • 19 CPC seats in the Atlantic (+5) to 13 for the NDP (+7).
  • An amazing 71 NDP seats in Québec (+13) to a pathetic 4 for the Tories (-2).
  • 72 Ontario seats for the Tories (-1) to 34 for the NDP (+12).
  • 21 CPC seats in Saskitoba (-3) and 7 for the NDP (+5).
  • No change in Alberta - 27 Conservative seats and one NDP.
  • 20 Conservative seats in BC (-1) and 16 (+4) for the NDP.
Essentially, what would happen is that current Liberal and Bloc seats would subsume into NDP seats, while Tory seats would stay Tory (presumably, anyway - I'm not looking at a seat-by-seat projection).

The NDP can't go anywhere without eroding the Conservative vote.

So let's look at that: The CPC collapses and the NDP are one of several beneficiaries. So I imagined the Conservatives able to hold onto only 60% of their 2011 vote, losing 20% to the NDP and 10% each to the Liberals and the Greens. I don't know how it would calculate a 10% loss to the Bloc, since we're not talking uniform swing, so I skipped it. In fact, I disbanded the Bloc, giving half their vote to the NDP and 25% each to the Liberals and to the Greens. The NDP, Liberals and Greens retained all their vote, and non-voters stayed non-voters. The result? It's just as bizarre. With no BQ, we'd have the Greens at 9.5%, the Conservatives in 3rd place for popular vote at 24.0, the Liberals at 24.6% and the NDP as king of the hill at 41.9%. With this, the Greens would keep their one seat, the Conservatives would fall into a dismal third with 62 seats (-105), the Liberals would be the official opposition at 70 and the NDP would have a 175-seat majority. Region by region:
  • In the Atlantic: 16 Lib, 15 NDP, 1 CPC.
  • In Québec: 69 NDP, 6 Lib.
  • In Ontario, 43 NDP, 38 Lib, 25 CPC.
  • In Saskitoba, 15 NDP, 7 CPC, 4 Lib.
  • In Alberta, 24 CPC, 4 NDP.
  • In BC, 26 NDP, 5 CPC, 4 Lib, 1 Green.
And then here's one more: the NDP rake it in, stealing votes from left, right and centre. I have the NDP getting 100% of the Bloc vote, 75% of the Green vote, 50% of the Liberal vote, 25% of the Tory vote, and 25% of the people who didn't vote at all in 2011. This would give the NDP 59.5% of the vote and a ridiculous 88.0% of the seats - 271, with a dismal 37-seat rump Tory opposition (28 of those seats would be in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba).

One last one: here's 'The Liberals shift to the right': the Conservatives lose 25% of their vote to the Liberals, who lose 25% of their votes to the NDP. Nothing else changes. That would leave a total vote of 3.9% for the Greens, 6.1% for the BQ, 24.3% for the Liberals, 30.0% for the Conservatives and 35.7% for the NDP - that would be a loss of 10.0% for the CPC, split roughly evenly between the Liberals and the NDP. The seat count would be 1 each for the BQ and the Greens, 51 for the Liberals, 122 for the CPC and 133 for the NDP - an interesting hung parliament with the Liberals holding sway and able to decide who to support for PM, like we currently see in the UK.

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