Monday, January 16, 2006

Different Messages Again

The most recent polling data comes from SES, which releases fresh numbers each day about mid-afternoon. Today’s release shows strength for the NDP (SES polls earlier in the campaign reported weakness for the NDP), a little bit of weakness for the Conservatives, and one encouraging sign for the Liberals that being a lead for Paul Martin in one of their leadership measures (Harper leads in the other).

The bottom line is a Conservative minority.
C – 133
L – 81
NDP – 32
BQ – 62

On the other hand, Strategic Counsel points to a Conservative majority, probably. The numbers below are partially a guess as I don’t have Atlantic regional numbers from that outfit to input into my little seat number cruncher. However, this is what I estimate:
C – 157
L – 72
NDP – 22
BQ – 57

Because I don’t have accurate Atlantic numbers you can add or subtract 6/7 seats from the Liberal and Conservative totals, perhaps one for the NDP.

Which do I believe? The answer is both and neither. I am troubled about the lack of a consistent message from the polls. A clearer picture should be now emerging this close to the end of a campaign. It is true their national numbers aren’t that far apart, but Canadian elections are decided in the regions, and there are some large differences when it comes to results at that level. The only thing that is clear is that the Liberals will lose control of the government.

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