Monday, March 26, 2007

Quebec Votes

Random thoughts throughout the evening:

6:45 pm: Libs 49 (35%), PQ 30 (31%), ADQ 35 (27%)
I haven't been able to get near a TV for so I don't know what the talking heads are saying but I, for one, am really surprised by the ration of seats to popular votes for each party. The common consensus all along has been that a popular vote total like this would probably mean a PQ minority government (or close to it), which means we're getting some weird vote splits somewhere.

6:55 pm: The ADQ has just pulled ahead. At this point, I wouldn't be surprised to see any of the three parties come out on top when all is said and done...

7:00 pm: Regardless of how this vote turns out, I do think it would be fair to call Jean Charest one of the most overrated politicians of the last 20 years.

7:38 pm: Still neck and neck between Charest and Dumont, with the popular vote almost identical for all three parties...which means, for once, the PLQ is actually being helped by the vote distribution.

With the PQ solidly in third place and that party's penchant to knifing successful leaders in the back, I think it's safe to say that the Andre Boisclair experiment will be coming to a close very soon. Does Gilles Ducceppe jump? I guess it depends on federal election timing.

7:47 pm: Jean Charest down by 400 votes in Sherbrooke to the PQ. Which means it's highly possible that the Liberals form government, Charest resigns as PLQ leader, and someone else becomes Premier. In the comments section, there's already some speculation he could run for Harper in the next federal election. If you're into politics, it's impossible not to have been fascinated by this election.

8:19 pm: Lowest vote percentage by the PLQ since confederation: 33.78% (1976)
Lowest vote percentage by the PQ since 1976: 33.24% (2003)

8:21 pm: Everyone has called it as a Liberal minority. But with 161/212 polls reporting, Charest trails badly in his riding. The big question now becomes, does he stay or does he go?

8:33 pm: Got a bus to catch and I likely won't update until later tonight so I thought I'd muse a bit on the federal implications of this.

For the Liberals, a Boisclair win was obviously the best case scenario for them so Dion certainly doesn't get very lucky in this one. I can't imagine anyone being afraid of a referendum after seeing this result. Let's face it, with the exception of the Adscam protest vote, the PQ/BQ have been on the decline over the past decade (in part thanks to the Chretien/Dion Plan B). I think the BQ is heading for big loses next campaign, especially if Ducceppe jumps provincially.

For Harper, he can certainly claim that his brand of federalism helped crush the PQ into the ground but, at the same time, he certainly didn't do much to help re-elect Jean Charest and the budget tax cuts appear to have somewhat backfired, both inside Quebec and outside. It'll be one of those things which everyone can spin pretty effortlessly.

9:42 pm: Mario Dumont speaking now. I wonder if he'll thank the "anti-ethnic vote" for this one...

9:45 pm: Jean Charest is now declared to have won his seat in Sherbrooke.

9:48 pm: Radio Canada is now reporting that Sherbrooke has been won by Al Gore.

Labels:

116 Comments:

  • Charest is such a loser

    By Blogger fartcatcher, at 8:49 PM  

  • 3 Minutes later it flips upside down.

    ADQ now leading 46 to 44.

    Jean Charest is struggling in Sherbrooke

    By Blogger Down & Out in L A, at 8:50 PM  

  • I'm amazed to see the ADQ's support turning into so many seats. Is Dumont ready to govern?

    By Blogger Pete, at 8:59 PM  

  • The ADQ is currently leading. As a Green-voting Québecer who wants the PQ to get elected and could bear the Liberals (I don't care about the referendum issue, it's highly secondary to me), but the ADQ... I'd be floored.

    I'll have more to say about it later, but right now I'm quite speechless.

    By Blogger jeagag, at 9:00 PM  

  • It took CBC until 9:02 to project it would be a minority? The way the splits have been coming in all night I think it was obvious 15 minutes after the polls closed.

    By Blogger Pete, at 9:03 PM  

  • Mario Dumont is as ready to govern as Stephen Harper was. He'll do just fine as premier if he were to be tonight. However, as many have said, his team is inexperienced and really, really not that good. Mario's ready to govern; his party isn't. The PQ and the PLQ have immensely stronger teams.

    By Blogger jeagag, at 9:03 PM  

  • It's still possible that the ADQ and Liberals will tie but with Jean Charest losing, who knows who will be Premier.

    Maybe every MNA should be Premier for a week until everyone has had a turn.

    Then call another election.

    I'm guessing thatJean Charest will run for the Conservatives in the next federal election.

    I have just heard that Stephen Harper's plane, that was heading for Sherbrooke, is beingdiverted to Riviere-du-Loup.

    Do they even have an airport?

    Someone should check before he lands !

    By Blogger Down & Out in L A, at 9:07 PM  

  • This. Election. Is. Crazy.

    The ADQ could win. Wow.

    By Blogger ALW, at 9:07 PM  

  • I'm not a Quebecker, but the ADQ scares me almost as much as the PQ, espically when it comes to issues are race and "reasonable accomodation."

    The dynamics of this minority will be fun to watch.

    I also think it's time to start the resignation watch for Boisclair.

    By Blogger Pete, at 9:10 PM  

  • I think that the PQ is demonized way too much in english Canada. Separatists aren't evil. I'm not one of them, I don't have them in my family, but I know several of them, and they make up almost half the population of the province. If not for the separation issue, the PQ is somewhere between the NDP and the federal Liberals, and I think that even though they do have some evident flaws, they are the best of the three parties set to have seats at the end of the night.

    The ADQ, however, is more of a protest party. It doesn't have the strong team nor the strong program the PQ has, its candidates are very weak, and they have no clear plan. That's scary to me.

    By Blogger jeagag, at 9:17 PM  

  • jeagag, separatists aren't evil because they're left-wing, they are evil because they want to destroy the country (not to mention the dangers of a virulent nationalism that, it seems, Mario Dumont has managed to capture) and oppress minorities in Quebec.

    Actually the Dippers that LIKE the PQ because of its socialism fundamentally fail to understand that Quebec socialism has a lot more to do with nationalism (hence the BQ will sometimes vote down leftish bills that strengthen Ottawa). Further, Quebec's nationalist/socialist ideology is actually not that committed to things like public healthcare (support for private healthcare is high in Quebec), which itself may be more an expression of anglo nationalism.

    By Blogger hosertohoosier, at 9:34 PM  

  • ADQ seems to have some solid business people. Chamber of Commerce Presidents etc.

    By Blogger Down & Out in L A, at 9:35 PM  

  • After Scott Brison's Liberal leadership bid, Alison Brewer's NDP disaster in New Brunswick and now Boisclair wiping out in Quebec, I think we have seen the last of gay leadership ambitions for some time.
    Is any of this related to Adscam making the Liberal name dirt in Quebec? Does it look bad for Dion? Will Harper call an election before there is an ADQ backlash?

    By Blogger nuna d. above, at 9:37 PM  

  • ADQ seems to have some solid business people. Chamber of Commerce Presidents etc.

    That's Gilles Taillon. He is indeed a strong candidate, albeit a lobbyist. But, after him, there are maybe 4 or 5 strong candidates, and that's pretty much it. It pales a lot in comparison to the other two parties.

    By Blogger jeagag, at 9:41 PM  

  • Jeagag - I don't think Mario Dumont is quite as prepared as Harper since I don't think he expected to form government. At least Stephen Harper thought he might have a shot. A better comparison would be Harper in 2004 who wasn't prepared for government.

    By Blogger Miles Lunn, at 9:43 PM  

  • Is any of this related to Adscam making the Liberal name dirt in Quebec? Does it look bad for Dion? Will Harper call an election before there is an ADQ backlash?

    Adscam has not been an issue at all in this election.

    nd yes, the Liberal Party of Canada is in deep trouble in Québec. Gone are the Trudeau days, it wouldn't surprise me if the Conservatives got more seats in Québec than the Liberals. Other than a few Montréal and maybe a few in Outaouais or Estrie, there isn't much room for the Liberals in Québec, I'm sadly afraid.

    By Blogger jeagag, at 9:45 PM  

  • Oh and to those calling Charest overrated, you have short memories. In the past year or so (with a lot of help from Stephen Harper) he has turned himself from the most hated man in the province (and hey, we all know how resistant the French are to any kind of reforms - on either side of the Atlantic) to, most likely, the leader with a plurality of seats and votes.

    Either way, I am happy that 64% of Quebec voted for non-separatist parties. Go open federalism.

    By Blogger hosertohoosier, at 9:47 PM  

  • Gilles Taillon was President du Conseil du Patronats --- not a chamber of commerce president.

    By Blogger Chuckercanuck, at 9:47 PM  

  • Jeagag - I don't think Mario Dumont is quite as prepared as Harper since I don't think he expected to form government. At least Stephen Harper thought he might have a shot. A better comparison would be Harper in 2004 who wasn't prepared for government.

    In the last federal campaign, I remember saying, when it started, that the results wouldn't change much. I couldn't have imagined that the Conservatives would win. It's the same for Dumont, who rose considerably during the campaign.

    Dumont is an experienced politician. He's been at the National Assembly since 1994, he's led his party through several campaigns, and he knows politics very well. He is a strong leader, and I'm not concerned about his leadership abilities. It's probably the best thing about his party, though...

    By Blogger jeagag, at 9:47 PM  

  • http://www.cbc.ca/canada/quebecvotes2007/story/2007/03/26/qcv-charest20070326.html

    This is kind of scary. It reports Charest winning in his riding with ??? percent of the vote and was written at 8:52 - before the CBC could know this. The PQ candidate should print a copy if he wins and do the Harry Truman pose.

    By Blogger hosertohoosier, at 9:52 PM  

  • jeagag, the skills that get you far in opposition (where Harper actually was rather ineffective) are different from those of government.

    As an example, I submit to you the general crapulence of even relatively experienced PC governments, which tended to be a parade of gaffes.

    Furthermore, unlike the federal Conservatives, Dumont does not have any experienced MP's. At least Harper had a lot of provincial experience to draw on, and, while most of his caucus is dead weight, they are at least, experienced dead weight, elected in 1993-2000.

    By Blogger hosertohoosier, at 9:55 PM  

  • jeagag, separatists aren't evil because they're left-wing, they are evil because they want to destroy the country (not to mention the dangers of a virulent nationalism that, it seems, Mario Dumont has managed to capture) and oppress minorities in Quebec.

    Actually the Dippers that LIKE the PQ because of its socialism fundamentally fail to understand that Quebec socialism has a lot more to do with nationalism (hence the BQ will sometimes vote down leftish bills that strengthen Ottawa). Further, Quebec's nationalist/socialist ideology is actually not that committed to things like public healthcare (support for private healthcare is high in Quebec), which itself may be more an expression of anglo nationalism.


    I have to disagree with you in a major way. Saying that separatists are evil is appalling. 40-50% of Québecers% are separatists - you are saying that they are evil?

    How does the PQ opress minorities in Québec? Please do say. As a Québec resident, I have never, once, felt that. On the contrary, it welcomes candidates from all ethnic communities, and its members elected an openly homosexual man as their leader. I cannot figure why you say that.

    Anglophones are not a factor in Québec politics. They are more or less confined to a dozen of seats, one of which I live in, electing Liberals massively. They make up 10% of the population.

    The question of public/private health care has not been a big issue in the campaign, which I think is quite unfortunate.

    By Blogger jeagag, at 10:00 PM  

  • Oh my god! harper's investment in charest blows up. Does harper dare go to the polls with an unstable Quebec.

    By Blogger JimTan, at 10:02 PM  

  • jeagag, the skills that get you far in opposition (where Harper actually was rather ineffective) are different from those of government.

    Yeah, I think you're right, and Dumont is a great opposition creature, and probably wouldn't be as good in the premier seat. However... he's as ready as he'll ever be to be premier. His team, however, will probably be much better the next time around. His party isn't ready, but he's as ready as he'll ever be.

    By Blogger jeagag, at 10:03 PM  

  • Oh my god! harper's investment in charest blows up. Does harper dare go to the polls with an unstable Quebec.

    Oh yes, he will. The ADQ vote will naturally go to the Conservative Party, and Harper should go as soon as he can to benefit from that wave. If the ADQ turns out to sink rapidly, the CPC has much less growth potential.

    By Blogger jeagag, at 10:04 PM  

  • Sadly, it's starting to stabilize and the Liberals (?) will have the most seats.

    Since the Liberals are really Conservatives.

    And the ADQ are really ultra Conservatives

    I'm guessing Stephen Harper is liking this.

    The odds of a spring federal election have increased dramatically.

    By Blogger Down & Out in L A, at 10:07 PM  

  • The Liberals appear to be asking Mario Dumont to serve as Premier in a Liberal government.

    How could that work if his party is the official opposition ?

    By Blogger Down & Out in L A, at 10:09 PM  

  • The Liberals appear to be asking Mario Dumont to serve as Premier in a Liberal government.

    How could that work if his party is the official opposition ?


    I am watching Radio-Canada and that hasn't come up.

    A coalition government is of course possible. With Charest really struggling in his riding, it seems far-fetched, but not impossible.

    By Blogger jeagag, at 10:12 PM  

  • To comment on CG's bit about Duceppe taking over the PQ...

    It's highly probable. He regrets not jumping in last time. He needs to do it as fast as possible, before the next federal election, because his value will go down the drain if he loses in the next federal election. The BQ will get slaughtered next time around; might as well be without a leader (Michel Gauthier as interim? Anyone betting on Bernard Bigras as next leader?)as to have an excuse.

    By Blogger jeagag, at 10:16 PM  

  • Jimtan, 63-64% of Quebec voted for federalist parties - I'd hardly call that an explosion. Harper wasn't investing in Charest he was investing in not-Boisclair. Indeed, he made a point of saying he favoured neither.

    As for the stability of this government - it may be better than you'd think. Even at its worst, about 40% of the Quebec will support separation. As soon as the PQ gets a decent leader, they can pull together that core of the separatist vote (or some of it). The ADQ-Liberal share of support is bound to decline.

    When that happens, it will be in the political interest of the ADQ and Liberals to avoid an election (assuming here that they form a coalition, or at least cooperate on most issues).

    By Blogger hosertohoosier, at 10:16 PM  

  • I agree with hoser - I think that the ADQ mainly destroyed the PQ rather than the PLQ. It was always said that the Liberals needed 6% higher than the PQ to have as many seats - well, todnight they're tied, and the PLQ has 8-10% more seats. The ADQ is not a federalist party - it appeals to the bulk of the Québec population who feel they are of the Québec nation and identity, but who don't think it's worth the trouble to separate. It's not a victory of federalism - it's a victory of the right.

    By Blogger jeagag, at 10:20 PM  

  • Jean Charest has just lost to the PQ per Radio-Canada.

    By Blogger jeagag, at 10:21 PM  

  • Well now he knows how George Drew felt when he won the Ontario election, but lost his seat (in my home riding) to a socialist-prohibitionist.

    What did George Drew do? He entered federal politics. Ominous music?

    By Blogger hosertohoosier, at 10:23 PM  

  • Liza Frulla is completely stunned about Charest losing - a fun sight indeed :).

    By Blogger jeagag, at 10:23 PM  

  • This comment has been removed by the author.

    By Blogger Down & Out in L A, at 10:23 PM  

  • In 1985, I think, Liberal leader Robert Bourassa lost his seat, and his party won. He went to another riding in a partial election. It's still embarassing :).

    By Blogger jeagag, at 10:25 PM  

  • It would be rather unprecedented (well okay it happened in Ontario) for the party to just pick a new leader - without so much as an election.

    I think Charest will be safe, so long as he is premier, and gets to control cabinet appointments (and doubly safe if Liberal poll numbers improve while he is in office).

    By Blogger hosertohoosier, at 10:27 PM  

  • Stockwell Day is the most over-rated politician in recent history.

    By Blogger Wendy Cooper, at 10:30 PM  

  • Charest is the first leader in 40 years who couldn't get a second straight majority in Québec. I'm not sure that his counsellors will try to convince him that the way to go is with the federal Conservatives. I don't see how he can bounce back in Québec - his ratings are really, really low in Québec. He could stay, for sure, but I'm really unsure that he will.

    By Blogger jeagag, at 10:30 PM  

  • Hey, if you plug the actual election results into Hill and Knowlton's election predictor, this is what you get:
    LPC: 44
    ADQ: 44
    BQ: 37

    Now that is a good model... if only the polls were right.

    By Blogger hosertohoosier, at 10:35 PM  

  • Charest lost. Wow.

    If I were a Quebec Liberal, I'd want him gone; however, we would be talking about appointing not just an interim leader, but an interim Premier, at a crucial junction. That could be chaos.

    Alternatively, Charest could stay on as Premier and call a leadership convention to elect a replacement as soon as possible.

    By Blogger IslandLiberal, at 10:35 PM  

  • Often (but not always) in minorities, the governing party uses the support of the third or fourth party to stay alive. However, from what I understand the PLQ has more in common ideologically with the ADQ than the PQ.

    Can Dumont be an effective opposition leader, while at the same time propping up the government?

    By Blogger Pete, at 10:36 PM  

  • Some of those ADQ wins are by impressive vote margins.

    I'm thinking cheap daycare may not be all that popular with young voters after all.

    The ADQ appeal is attributed to voters between 18 and 35 where they have a strong lead.

    By Blogger Down & Out in L A, at 10:39 PM  

  • The Liberals and ADQ are both right-wing, and they are indeed close on that issue. However, Dumont spent more time attacking the Liberals than the PQ during the campaign. Dumont was the leader of the Young Liberals in the early 90's, before breaking off and joining the ADQ. It's clear that he doesn't like the Liberals much, so it'll be interesting to see. More interesting will be to see how the Liberals deal with their strange puzzle.

    By Blogger jeagag, at 10:40 PM  

  • Some of those ADQ wins are by impressive vote margins.

    I'm thinking cheap daycare may not be all that popular with young voters after all.

    The ADQ appeal is attributed to voters between 18 and 35 where they have a strong lead.


    True... outside Montréal. Montréal is heavily under-represented right now, but no one wants to touch that for fear of huge, huge backlash outside Montréal - the power of which we can see tonight.

    By Blogger jeagag, at 10:42 PM  

  • Also using the HK predictor, if all of the Quebec Solidaire folks had voted for Boisclair, this is what the seat totals would look like:

    LPQ: 41
    PQ: 53
    ADQ: 31

    As a federalist, I salute you Quebec solidaire.

    By Blogger hosertohoosier, at 10:42 PM  

  • I just got in from work and am racing to catch up, but

    After Scott Brison's Liberal leadership bid, Alison Brewer's NDP disaster in New Brunswick and now Boisclair wiping out in Quebec, I think we have seen the last of gay leadership ambitions for some time.

    is brilliant. That's the best laught all day.

    By Blogger Jason Bo Green, at 10:43 PM  

  • Also using the HK predictor, if all of the Quebec Solidaire folks had voted for Boisclair, this is what the seat totals would look like:

    LPQ: 41
    PQ: 53
    ADQ: 31

    As a federalist, I salute you Quebec solidaire.


    There are only 2 ridings where Québec Solidaire was very, very strong: Gouin and Mercier. Both of these ridings elected PQ representatives. It might've hurt a bit in some places, but I'm not sure it could've really changed something. Perhaps, i suppose, but not enough to win significantly more ridings.

    I would like to invite all federal liberals to read the PQ's platform other than the referendum issue. I'm sure most of you will find that platform more appealing than the Liberal platform. Ever since Charest has been in power, this party has drifted dangerously to the right.

    By Blogger jeagag, at 10:47 PM  

  • I think Dumont may be softening on Liberals.

    He's taking a lot of calls from them tonight.

    At least he is listening.

    Mario Dumont might be the next Premier of Quebec.

    By Blogger Down & Out in L A, at 10:48 PM  

  • Mario Dumont might be the next Premier of Quebec.

    Seeing these words sends a shiver down my spine. Charest was scum, but Mario Dumont is really, really scary to Montréalers.

    By Blogger jeagag, at 10:50 PM  

  • Seeing these words sends a shiver down my spine. Charest was scum, but Mario Dumont is really, really scary to Montréalers.

    Then if he does become premier, I expect he won't be there long. At least, so far he's fitting the Bob Rae pattern well, apart from lacking a majority in the legislature.

    By Blogger Josh Gould, at 10:54 PM  

  • Just heard that some 23 year-old ADQ kid won a seat??? Watch out Dumont your successor is waiting in the wings ;-)

    By Blogger TMS, at 10:54 PM  

  • jeagag, Charest largely failed to bring about the kind of reforms he campaigned on. Oooh Charest is scary, he let tuition rise in a province where it is $2,500/year - lower than anywhere else in the country.

    Besides which the whole "other than the referendum issue" is, you know, kind of a big deal.

    Beyond that, the PQ adopts a collectivist mentality that is anathema to the Trudeauite Liberal party. I suspect that most English Liberals don't give a rat's ass that, in an independent Quebec, Anglo Montrealers would have subsidized childcare (while anglo parents would be forced to work in asbestos mines... and the children forced to wear berets).

    By Blogger hosertohoosier, at 10:54 PM  

  • The Green vote was high-coming is second in some places-in strong Liberal ridings. This is bad news for the Liberals federally. They will lose funding as people will feel it's safe to vote Green in ridings like NDG or TMR.
    The same thing could happen to Conservatives in Alberta.
    Didn't Don Getty lose his seat and have to run in a by-election to become premier?

    By Blogger nuna d. above, at 10:58 PM  

  • Charest is gaining fast - he is now only behind by 110, with 19 polls to report (there are about 150 votes in each poll).

    By Blogger hosertohoosier, at 10:59 PM  

  • Mommy, what's "autonomisme"?

    By Blogger WJM, at 11:03 PM  

  • jeagag, Charest largely failed to bring about the kind of reforms he campaigned on. Oooh Charest is scary, he let tuition rise in a province where it is $2,500/year - lower than anywhere else in the country.

    Besides which the whole "other than the referendum issue" is, you know, kind of a big deal.


    The one thing I don't like about English Canadian media is that it fails to present the PQ as anything more than a separatist party. It's much more than that, and you should read their platform to see how small the referendum is in the program, it's really not a huge part of it. Besides, I know that I'm in a really small minority here, but I don't care either way about separation of Québec, it's highly secondary to me. I can live in the province of QUébec just like I can live in the country of Québec.

    Anyway, Charest isn't scary to many. He was just a very poor premier in a very poor government. If one cares about health care, education and the like, he'll see that the PQ has historically done much better than the PLQ in the past 30 years. The PQ has done much better for Québec than the Liberals have, in particular the last government. You know, as a Québecer, I want Québec to be in good shape - I'll take a separatist party who does that over a federalist party that doesn't.

    By Blogger jeagag, at 11:06 PM  

  • Mommy, what's "autonomisme"?

    Even Québec media are having problem with that. I just saw Bernard Derome, who's covered the past 19 elections for Radio-Canada, ask Jean Allaire, founder of the ADQ, if autonomist was more separatist or federalist, as if it had to be both.

    By Blogger jeagag, at 11:07 PM  

  • down and out said

    “Sadly, it's starting to stabilize and the Liberals (?) will have the most seats.

    Since the Liberals are really Conservatives.

    And the ADQ are really ultra Conservatives

    I'm guessing Stephen Harper is liking this.”

    Hose said

    “63-64% of Quebec voted for federalist parties - I'd hardly call that an explosion. Harper wasn't investing in Charest he was investing in not-Boisclair. Indeed, he made a point of saying he favoured neither.”

    I’m going to go against conventional wisdom. I propose that Quebec has voted against the old issues. The PQ/BQ and separation is becoming irrelevant. Therefore, Quebec votes were up for grabs on a per issue basis.

    It doesn’t follow that their federal votes will go to harper because Dumont is ‘ultra-conservative’. Indeed, the Francophones may choose to level out their voting behaviour by voting more liberal for Ottawa representation. Indeed, Dumont’s surge in strength comes from young voters

    Here’s one interesting issue. Quotes from the CBC.

    “The survey conducted by Angus Reid Strategies released Thursday found that almost four in five Canadians — 77 per cent — are convinced global warming is real.”

    “Almost half — 47 per cent — believe climate change will affect their lives and those of future generations, while 42 per cent think it will not significantly affect their lives, but will have an impact on the lives of future generations, the poll suggested.
    Only 12 per cent of those surveyed viewed global warming as "junk science" and only two per cent believed global warming isn't happening at all.”

    Then, the report goes on to locate the strongest green concerns. It’s not Alberta.

    BTW, I’m sure that the BQ will want to associate harper with Charest in the federal elections.

    By Blogger JimTan, at 11:08 PM  

  • The one thing I don't like about English Canadian media is that it fails to present the PQ as anything more than a separatist party. It's much more than that, and you should read their platform to see how small the referendum is in the program, it's really not a huge part of it.

    Separatism is their raison d'etre. That's the whole damn point of the movement. They want other things, sure, but their chief goal is separation from Canada.

    By Blogger IslandLiberal, at 11:09 PM  

  • Behold the Quiet Counter-Revolution.

    By Blogger Glen, at 11:14 PM  

  • jeagag, for all of his flaws, at least Charest is not Boisclair.

    As for most overrated politician...
    April 2005 (Leger Marketing):
    PLQ: 19%
    PQ: 42%
    ADQ: 22%

    Boisclair has managed to turn a 20 point lead into utter defeat - saved (in terms of seats) only by the fact that there were a lot of three-way races. Truly, the PQ has found its Stockwell Day.

    If I was Pauline Marois I would feel REALLY vindicated right now.

    By Blogger hosertohoosier, at 11:14 PM  

  • Separatism is their raison d'etre. That's the whole damn point of the movement. They want other things, sure, but their chief goal is separation from Canada.

    That's right. However, they've never done that. On the other hand, they've done many other things that have made Québec a better place. They have led Québec better than the Liberals in the past 30 years. And, ultimately, that's what I want from my government, even though I am not separatist.

    By Blogger jeagag, at 11:15 PM  

  • However, they've never done that

    Wow, what news! And how gracious of them not even to have ever attempted.

    By Blogger Jason Bo Green, at 11:20 PM  

  • That's right. However, they've never done that.

    Not for lack of trying.

    By Blogger IslandLiberal, at 11:21 PM  

  • Hold On - CBC Radio One saying that Charest's team has said they won the riding.

    CHAREST UP BY 400!

    By Blogger TMS, at 11:21 PM  

  • Oops, Charest has pulled ahead again, defying predictions.

    [Monty Python]"I'm not dead yet!"[/Monty Python]

    By Blogger IslandLiberal, at 11:23 PM  

  • jeagag, for all of his flaws, at least Charest is not Boisclair.

    As for most overrated politician...
    April 2005 (Leger Marketing):
    PLQ: 19%
    PQ: 42%
    ADQ: 22%

    Boisclair has managed to turn a 20 point lead into utter defeat - saved (in terms of seats) only by the fact that there were a lot of three-way races. Truly, the PQ has found its Stockwell Day.

    If I was Pauline Marois I would feel REALLY vindicated right now.


    Marois doesn't hate Boisclair, I'd think. I'm sure she still voted for the PQ.

    The problem with Boisclair was that he was too "Montréaler". He was too educated, spoke too well, was too detached from the common rural man. Given the huge disdain in rural Québec for all things Montréal, André Boisclair was indeed loathed. That said, to equate the drop of the PQ with Boisclair's performance isn't right; you have to take into account the (small) rise of the Charest rating and the 10-point rise of the ADQ compared to the polls you mentioned.

    Charest apparently has 1100 more votes than the PQ. The director of the elections apparently called Charest to tell him he was elected.

    By Blogger jeagag, at 11:23 PM  

  • Wow, what news! And how gracious of them not even to have ever attempted.

    So what, a party whose raison-d'être is to make Québec a state isn't supposed to try?

    And if it fails, it's not supposed to run the province as best as it could?

    By Blogger jeagag, at 11:25 PM  

  • Wow. Charest is now leading in his riding by 700 votes.

    Someone is manipulating this.

    And as soon as Charest suddenly catapults into the lead, the phone calls to Dumont dry up and Dumont is free to speak on National TV.

    Someone should check the math

    By Blogger Down & Out in L A, at 11:25 PM  

  • Okay, I have been watching Sherbrooke all night. With 183 polls reporting Charest was behind by 110 votes. Now he is ahead by 700 votes, with 187 votes reporting.

    Those were some damn Liberal polls. Now maybe Charest has 700 relatives and they all voted together, but I'm a bit suspicious.

    Does anybody who has worked for elections Canada, etc know more about the average size of polls?

    Considering there have been 187 so far, and 34,375 votes, that makes an average poll size of 188. So if those four polls were of average size they'd have 752 votes - Charest just picked up 880.

    Probably they were larger polls (again I'm not quite sure how these things work) but damned suspicious.

    By Blogger hosertohoosier, at 11:27 PM  

  • Sure, they tried - but that's not what you said, jeagag.

    By Blogger Jason Bo Green, at 11:27 PM  

  • Wow. Charest is now leading in his riding by 700 votes.

    Someone is manipulating this.


    According to Radio-Canada, the PQ contested all the anticipation boxes, that were favorable to Charest.

    By Blogger jeagag, at 11:28 PM  

  • Sure, they tried - but that's not what you said, jeagag.

    I said they hadn't done the sovereignty of Québec. I didn't say they didn't try... I'm not sure what you mean.

    By Blogger jeagag, at 11:29 PM  

  • Didn't Don Getty lose his seat and have to run in a by-election to become premier?

    Yup! And he lost to a Liberal, no less.

    By Blogger Josh Gould, at 11:31 PM  

  • I prefer Charest to lose - just for the educational factor of seeing what procedure would happen afterwards.

    By Blogger Jason Bo Green, at 11:31 PM  

  • a thin-skinned political lightweight with cocaine abuse in his past.

    Hm, so if you do a moderate amount of cocaine, that's okay, I guess. It's once you do too much that it becomes a PR problem...

    Not that I'm knocking cocaine!

    By Blogger Jason Bo Green, at 11:34 PM  

  • Jason, cocaine-use does not produce good government. Just look at Dubya.

    By Blogger hosertohoosier, at 11:36 PM  

  • Unreal. At 8:21 Charest was behind by 800 votes and declared defeated.

    An hour later, he makes up 1600 votes and wins by 800 ???

    It is certainly an eye opener

    By Blogger Down & Out in L A, at 11:37 PM  

  • Jeagag, I think you're missing the point: it's obvious that the PQ's ultimatee goal is Quebec separation, and many people simply can't support a party whose raison d'être is to rock the very political foundations of Quebec, regardless of what the nuances of their social policy might be. Many are willing to stomach the Liberals, for the sake of avoiding the repercussions of Quebec separation (and there WOULD be repercussions).

    By Blogger daniel, at 11:38 PM  

  • Ha ha Hoser, too right.

    Daniel, I think what you're looking at here is a wilful missing the point.

    By Blogger Jason Bo Green, at 11:44 PM  

  • You would think that the 2000 US election would have taught us all that it isn't over till the fat lady sings. Did some of you forget that? The PQ can ask for a re-count if they think there was irregularities.

    By Blogger TMS, at 11:44 PM  

  • If I were Charest, I'd still be planning an exit from the job within a year or so; he's been saved from utter humiliation, but he's tremendously unpopular.

    By Blogger IslandLiberal, at 11:46 PM  

  • Jeagag, I think you're missing the point: it's obvious that the PQ's ultimatee goal is Quebec separation, and many people simply can't support a party whose raison d'être is to rock the very political foundations of Quebec, regardless of what the nuances of their social policy might be. Many are willing to stomach the Liberals, for the sake of avoiding the repercussions of Quebec separation (and there WOULD be repercussions).

    Yes, I know it's the case, I see it everyday around me, and it certainly seems to be the case in the ROC too. However, I choose to go beyond that. I see the point (although few go as far as hoser and say that the separatists are evil), I just don't agree with it. I have no fundamental ideological opposition to the separation of Québec from Canada, it would in fact certainly have its positive points. And of course there would be consequences - if there weren't, why bother?

    For many years, I was an ideological federalist who deeply loathed the PQ. But, somewhere in my late teens, I realized that the separation issue was secondary, that the real issue was to do what was the best for the province of Québec. I am fully aware, however, that it's not the case for everyone, that many are more ideological and vote PQ or PLQ for that reason. ANd, it's their right to do so.

    By Blogger jeagag, at 11:47 PM  

  • Now that I think of it, the same thing happened to Paul Martin in the last election. I think the separatists just like to give us political junkies heart attacks.

    By Blogger hosertohoosier, at 11:47 PM  

  • The thing about Quebec is that it's not inconceivable that you could have a poll which is overwhelmingly anglo/ethnic and therefore overwhelmingly Liberal.

    I'm not sure how many of those super majority polls Sherbrooke has, but it's not impossible for a few big polls to come in and swing it Charest's way.

    By Blogger calgarygrit, at 11:51 PM  

  • Don Getty, Robert Bourassa, and Clyde Wells.

    By Blogger WJM, at 11:55 PM  

  • I believe there are a few heavily Anglo polls in the southwest of Sherbrooke where many of Irish decent settled, so I suspect thats what put Charest over the top. Unless you know the results from each individual poll and what part of the riding they are located in, you can sometimes make wrong calls. The point is statiscally, 95% of the time the calls are accurate and the 5% that are wrong are those outside the margin of error in terms of probability.

    As for Stephen Harper, he didn't help Charest, but seeing the ADQ do well cannot be seen as bad for him. It won't help him elsewhere in Canada, but I suspect privately he is pretty happy about the results considering the ADQ is ideological the closest to the Tories.

    I agree each party will spin it to their advantage. My guess is no party gains or loses over this.

    By Blogger Miles Lunn, at 11:58 PM  

  • wjm, you are missing William Lyon Mackenzie King, John A. Macdonald and George Drew from your analysis (I think - I'm only 100% on Drew).

    By Blogger hosertohoosier, at 12:00 AM  

  • They said on TV that it was the advanced polls which came in last, which were very heavily in favour of Charest that gave him the bump.

    By Blogger Chris, at 12:13 AM  

  • Not missing anything; I was thinking of Premiers.

    George Drew doesn't count; lots of losers lose their own seats. He lost and lost; the others WON and lost.

    By Blogger WJM, at 12:14 AM  

  • It actually happened twice (!) to King.

    By Blogger Josh Gould, at 12:14 AM  

  • Actually I found out how charest came from behind: the advanced polls were counted last so that is why there was the big swing.

    By Blogger Miles Lunn, at 12:20 AM  

  • Actually I found out how charest came from behind: the advanced polls were counted last so that is why there was the big swing.

    It was already mentioned twice before, but you're right.

    It would've been interesting to see what would've happened if Charest had lost. We'll never know...

    By Blogger jeagag, at 12:24 AM  

  • Stephen Harper has to be thinking about 1958.

    And Canadians should too.

    By Blogger Down & Out in L A, at 12:27 AM  

  • wjm, George Drew won the Ontario election.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1948_Ontario_election

    Results of 1948 Ontario Election
    PC: 53
    CCF: 21
    Liberal: 14
    Labour-Progressive*: 2

    *One of those guys, the last elected Communist in Ontario (possibly in Canada) has one of my favourite lines of all time.

    When campaigning for re-election to the city council, he was accused by some voters of being a tool of the USSR. His response "yeah, Stalin called and said he wanted me to build a park in ward 3."

    By Blogger hosertohoosier, at 12:32 AM  

  • This comment has been removed by the author.

    By Blogger Down & Out in L A, at 12:40 AM  

  • Stephen Harper has to be thinking about 1958.

    And Canadians should too.


    No doubt he is... and hopefully he's recalling that Diefenbaker had the machine of the Union Nationale behind him (temporarily). And that his coalition disintegrated rapidly, so that the Tories spent 16 years in opposition after 1963.

    By Blogger Josh Gould, at 12:44 AM  

  • 200 seat majorities aren't stable.

    Harper is in the business of building a stable long-term governing coalition. (At least, he thinks he is.) He'll be wary -- but he won't turn one down, either...

    By Blogger The Tiger, at 1:27 AM  

  • On CBC tonite, Chantel and Coyne were negative on harper's interference in Quebec. Looks like the provincial election was decided on local government issues. Once again, Quebec confounds Ottawa.

    By Blogger JimTan, at 1:37 AM  

  • Stephen Harper is not thinking of 1958. He is thinking of 1921.

    By Blogger hosertohoosier, at 1:58 AM  

  • Hose said

    "Stephen Harper is not thinking of 1958. He is thinking of 1921."

    Not surprising since he is trying to turn back the clock all the time.

    By Blogger JimTan, at 2:09 AM  

  • Yes, Harper is turning back the clock... returning to Canada's long tradition of boring centrist Prime Ministers.

    Canadian Conservatives are NOT interested in restoring some past golden age, since any such conservative golden age would be make-believe. They (well the far right) are interested in bringing in the American past, not the Canadian past.

    By Blogger hosertohoosier, at 2:46 AM  

  • For Hoser,

    Seems to me that harper and his boys like to return to the good old days when murderers were hanged, adulterers were flogged, gays hide in the closet, women were submissive, you could pollute as much as you like and the sun never set on the empire.

    There were centralists in those days, too! But, they wouldn't be centralists in today's multi-racial, multi-ethnic and post-modern society.

    Do you know what turns me off most about harper?

    By Blogger JimTan, at 3:50 AM  

  • Hey the world was alot better managed when the sun never set on The Empire.

    By Blogger Chris, at 6:34 AM  

  • It was a fun night. We should do this more often!

    I'm beginning to understand why Italians perpetually elect shaky coalition governments.

    The drama last night was wonderful and the outcome is a minority government.

    Albertans should take a page from this. We're missing out folks.

    I'm still thinking 1958. Wasn't around in 1921 . . .

    The Liberals could have a Nobel Prize winner as leader of the party and still wouldn't win the next election based on the results out of Quebec last night.

    The Quebec Liberal Party is really the Conservative party and the ADQ are the ultra right party.

    Having said that, it will be very important that the Liberal Party field strong candidates.

    They have to be thinking five years down the road and elect the core of the next government in the forthcoming election.

    Unless Harper keeps Conservatives from attending the budget votes, the government won't fall on the budget.

    But the Environment and Security issues are real possibilities.

    I'm guessing the "Environment" to go after the perceived strength of the Liberals.

    Then, if they get a majority government, Harper can say that Canadians endorsed "his plan".

    So will the writ drop before or after Easter . . . .

    By Blogger Down & Out in L A, at 8:12 AM  

  • I was a toddler in diapers in 1958 but I distinctly remember looking up at that old black & white tv screen and thinking " Oh no ! ".

    By Blogger Down & Out in L A, at 9:19 AM  

  • wjm, George Drew won the Ontario election.

    D'oh. Who in heaven's name did I think George Drew was?

    By Blogger WJM, at 10:30 AM  

  • //9:42 pm: Mario Dumont speaking now. I wonder if he'll thank the "anti-ethnic vote" for this one...//

    This is a cheap shot. Because some people are concerned about the rapidity of change, or feel relatively powerless against the changes that is occuring, does not make them "anti-whatever", but just anxious about the changes that are occuring.

    The Reform Party (i.e rural Westerners) had to endure this same slander from the Canadian elites.

    Instead of being snide and self-superior, Canadian elites should recognize this as a failure on their part to bring the people along with the changes that are happening.

    Many lifelong NDP'ers voted for the Reform Party. I expect that many Quebec leftists voted for the ADQ.

    By Blogger whyshouldIsellyourwheat, at 10:37 AM  

  • Am I the only one who thinks the ADQ support was merely a protest vote and it's not going to amount to that much federally? Am I way out to lunch on this? I don't think this bolsters much for Harper and I still don't think we're into a Spring election.

    By Blogger Scooge, at 12:35 PM  

  • Anticipation ballots correlates highly to seniors.

    By Blogger anonymous, at 12:45 PM  

  • IPSOS has the CPC ahead by 10 in Ontario and tied in Quebec and the folks that elected most of the Quebec CPC MPs riding the wave... the only reason he doesn't go to the polls is if he gets to govern like he has a majority.

    He thinks he benefits more by staying and delivering, but if you want that election pin him down everywhere you can.

    By Blogger anonymous, at 12:56 PM  

  • Re: Charest in Sherbrooke

    This happens EVERY election. He trails in the smaller outlying polls, and then the bigger polls + anticipation polls get counted and he pulls ahead.

    In 2003, he was trailing with 50% of polls reporting and won in the end by 2000+ votes.

    As a Quebecois, you get used to reading the ridings... my riding of Vachon, for example, has had 2 razor-thin PQ wins in 2003 and 2007... yet even with 30-40 polls left to count you knew it would go PQ, just because the bigger polls in Saint-Hubert tend to be PQ friendly (or at least NOT PQ negative).

    Laurier-Dorion was another good example... Villeray got counted quick and it looked like a nail-biter, but once Park Ex and the large Greek population polls got counted, the Liberal pulled ahead and easily won.

    By Blogger Mike, at 1:11 PM  

  • This has probably been said before (I didn't read the 113 comments), but I can't believe that the CBC called for a Charest defeat early on in Sherbrooke. Talk about jumping the gun. Where's the responsible journalism there?

    By Blogger Toronto Tory, at 8:12 PM  

  • This has probably been said before (I didn't read the 113 comments), but I can't believe that the CBC called for a Charest defeat early on in Sherbrooke. Talk about jumping the gun. Where's the responsible journalism there?

    The Globe mentions that too in the first paragraph of their lead story. If only it had been in the headline - we would have had our very own "Dewey defeats Truman!".

    By Blogger Josh Gould, at 11:10 PM  

  • For Toronto Tory,

    Actually, I was watching that part of the broadcast. You might want to know that Charest had a narrow led as the last polling stations were counted.

    Then, the count turned against him by over a thousand votes. That's when the CBC reversed itself and said that Charest had lost.

    It is strange that the advance votes were so heavily in his favour.

    By Blogger JimTan, at 1:31 AM  

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