Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Most Exciting Ridings in Canada

We've now had 4 elections under the current 308 riding electoral map, a period over which the Canadian political landscape has completely transformed itself.



Still, that doesn't mean every local election has been exciting - after all, if you live in Calgary East or York West, your vote hasn't been overly meaningful at any point over the past decade.

For interests sake, I've calculated an "excitement score" for every riding based on how close the last four elections have been and how many times they've shifted hands. Yes, this is a fairly arbitrary exercise, but consider it like those "best places to live" lists...only for political junkies.

Most Exciting Ridings in Canada

1. Brossard-La Prairie: The riding where I grew up has changed hands every election - from Liberal to Bloc to Liberal to NDP. In 2008, it took a recount to sort it out.

2. Louis-Hebert: You'll notice a few Quebec seats on this list, for obvious reasons. Like Brossard, it has switched hands each election.

3. Vancouver Island North: A perpetual Conservative-NDP battle, the margin of victory has been under 5% in each of the last four elections.

4. Parkdale-High Park: This riding has made headlines during the last two campaigns due to the high profile and often nasty Gerard Kennedy-Peggy Nash battles. But even before then, the Liberals and NDP each pulled off narrow victories in 2004 and 2006.

5. Newton North Delta: Gurmant Grewal's old riding has not been a warm comfy mat with lots of fur for incumbents, with the Tories losing it in 2006 to the Liberals, who in turn were turfed in 2011.

6. Papineau: Believe it or not, Justin Trudeau's margin of victory in 2011 was by far the most lopsided result in Papineau over the past decade, with no other election won by more than 3 percentage points.

7. Surrey North: From Chuck Cadman (Ind) to Penny Priddy (NDP) to Dona Cadman (CPC) to Jasbir Sandhu (NDP).

8. Jeanne-Le Ber: Turned into an NDP rout this election after three close Liberal-BQ battles.

9. Ahuntsic: No party has won this riding by more than 3 points in any of the past four elections.

10. Esquimalt-Juan De Fuca: Keith Martin always clung to victory and, with his departure, the riding quickly morphed into a tight CPC-NDP duel.

Those are the most exciting ridings. The least? Well, it should be no surprise that all 10 are in Alberta, with Crowfoot topping the list. The closest Crowfoot has been over the past decade was in 2004, when Kevin Sorenson won it by a measly 73 percentage points, earning over 10 times as many votes as the second place candidate.



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