Monday, April 25, 2016

Harper still tops among Conservatives

 #cdnpoli #cpc

An EKOS poll has Conservatives still picking Harper over the others.  Either members haven't moved on or they are setting a bar for the other candidates to live up to.

One would certainly hope that the next leader would be even better than Harper, let alone Prime Minister Trudeau.

In the poll, what bothers me is the other potential candidates that are missing, particularly Michael Chong and Michelle Rempel although over 1/3 of respondents didn't want to pick any of the given names.

28% Stephen Harper
23% Peter MacKay
17% Kevin O’Leary
17% Other
5% Lisa Raitt
5% Don't Know/No Response
4% Maxime Bernier
2% Kellie Leitch

So even if that 17% Other was split among Chong and Rempel, they'd still be above Raitt, Bernier, and Leitch.  With MacKay likely not entering this race, and O'Leary having a political ceiling, whomever this "Other" is, can take it.

In this sense, with one year to go, this EKOS poll is simply telling us that it's anyone's race, few see it's worth entering, it's wide open, and no one really cares right now.

I'll maintain that history dictates that whoever wins, won't be prime minister--which gives meaning to the leadership race following the next election.  That's when you'll see candidates like Peter MacKay and Rona Ambrose entering, knowing they now have a legitimate chance at actually becoming prime minister.  For Rona, she will be able to stand on her well-remembered time as the current interim leader, and she full-well knows she's currently gaining experience, building knowledge, and creating a national campaign network and future war chest to run for Conservative leader in 2021.

The risk, however, is if the leader elected in May 2017 becomes well-liked and runs a smooth campaign in 2019 to not only build on 99 seats, but in the four years following, becomes a palatable official opposition leader in order to be accepted as a credible prime minister, especially in a minority government.  If that leader loses the 2023 election, then you have to jump up to nine years from now for the next opportunity.

But one thing we do know in Canadian politics, to become prime minister, you need to have deep roots politically.

For Ambrose and MacKay, those roots go way back, even from now.


Anonymous said...

At this point, most polls are more name recognition so I wouldn't put too much stock in them. Harper won't be coming back and if he did it would just ensure the party loses in 2019. Unlike some I think the 2019 election is winnable although it will be an uphill battle but considering how unpredictable elections are it certainly is possible.

Anonymous said...

It's like the U.S. - if we don't win the next election we will never get in again. So we better pick a great leader.

dmorris said...

O'Leary might be the best candidate for today's voters,but can he speak that unimportant-to-the-real -world language?

He has had plenty of exposure and he buys into climate change and almost every other plank in the Liberal platform, so,if the love affair with Justin is waning,which I doubt, he might have a slim chance. remember,today's voters are NOT in the mood for a scolding,they want "sunny ways" to carry on forever. Maybe the government can add something to the water supply.

Justin,barring an early death or disabling illness, will win in 2019, and again in 2023,and again in 2027. By that date, he will have grown the Federal civil service and with liberal Provincial CS's on board, just getting their vote will be enough to guarantee a minority,and he'll be over the top with the private sector Union vote and Aboriginal vote.

I will be long dead by then,so you youngsters who bought this load of BS can deal with it.

FoxtrotBravo said...

I totally agree. As learned in the last election, policy is far less important then having a charismatic leader. The CPC sends me daily requests for donations, but until I see the leader, sending them money seems moot.

Dollops said...

As the Liberals demonstrated to our lackluster Conservative Party, elections can turn on a loonie. As long as we continue to run Liberal-lite candidates and policies we will never convince Canadians that we are the better option -- only that we should be put in power from time to time to restock the horn-of-plenty government coffers. We need a WAC Bennett, a Ralph Klein or a Mike Harris to stand up and say "This will be a wealthy and significant country if we push government and other impediments out of the way and let our enormously talented people show their Can-do."

Anonymous said...

The real eye opener here is Peter MacKay. I mean seriously?