"Facts are meaningless. You could use facts to prove anything that's even remotely true!"
-Homer J. Simpson

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Saskatchewan Debate Anaysis

First of all, this debate didn't change anyone's mind. There was no clear winner or loser and after the first shouting match most of the people would have turned off their TV's in disgust.

Stupid moderator. Stupid Format.

With that being said, Brad Wall didn't lose his temper so he did alright for himself, Calvert did a pretty good job of defending his government and Karwacki made shit up.

Karwacki's "plan" for highways is to complain about traffic jams? WTF?

Karwacki talked about the gangs he sees every day in Riversdale when he drives to his campaign office? The problem is that he lives in Silver Springs and is running in Meewasin. Why the hell would he drive through Riversdale every day? No wonder he thinks traffic jams are a big problem, he takes the longest route imaginable to get anywhere.

Karwaki once again talked about his debt-free-in-a-decade plan that he doesn't budget a single cent for in his platform.

And he claimed Stephen Lewis said that the Saskatchewan Liberals have the best plan for health care? Um, care to prove that one David?

Oh, yeah, cities will be the “Velcro” that keeps young people in the province. David is a moron. And what was up with his grandmother cleaning the toilet? What did that have to do with anything?

My Analysis? David was smoking the Karwacki Tabacci.

More importatly, no one's vote changed tonight.

The Sask Party's So-Called "Ethics"

In the wake of the Dan Harder scandal the NDP has been raising some serious questions about the so-called ethics of the Saskatchewan Party and Brad Wall.

Mr. Wall’s handling of Mr. Harder mirrors the actions he took around Regina Wascana Plains candidate, Christine Tell, who accepted a suspension from her job as a police officer after she was accused of improperly accessing private information.”

It was only after reporters raised questions that Mr. Wall referred the matter to his ethics panel, which reported that they accepted Ms. Tell’s statement about the events. Mr. Wall has also failed to address concerns raised about three other Sask Party candidates.

Yes, why was it back in the summer, that Ms. Tell's problems with the RCMP were turned over to the Sask Party "ethics panel" and Mr. Harder's problems with harassment were simply "dealt with" by Mr. Wall? (After he got caught covering it up)

Doesn't this mean that ultimately Brad Wall just makes the decision? So what was with the whole bullshit "ethics committee" investigation in the summer? Wall knew that he was going to keep Christine Tell so he sent his trained "ethical lapdogs" in to deal with the problem of Christine Tell and her RCMP investigation.

So for the record there is still no instance of the ethics committee actually finding any action by any of the members of the Sask Party unethical.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Sask Party Candidate Quits due to Workplace Harrasment

As I posted last night:

The Saskatchewan Party's candidate in the Regina Walsh Acres constituency has stepped down at the request of the party's leader after allegations that he made inappropriate comments.

When Dan Harder became the party's candidate in the constituency for the Nov. 7 provincial election, he told the party about a complaint made against him in 2006 by three employees during his former job as executive director of Big Brothers of Regina.

CBC News recently obtained documents containing allegations that Harder made inappropriate comments about others based on race, gender, marital status, weight and sexual orientation.
So in other words this guy was asked to leave his job at Big Brothers of Regina due to workplace harassment.

But the next question is, when did this happen?

Well, it must have happened sometime after October 18, 2006. How do I know this? Because of this article posted on that day that still has him working in this position. And then Dan Harder is still listed as a contact person for the Big Brothers of Regina "Bowl for Kid's Sake" in 2007.

So it is getting more and more likely that this happened in 2007.

Update: And according to the NDP news release Harder was nominated in March of 07

And what was the Sask Party doing at that exact same time in 2007?

Oh yeah, standing up every day in the legislature and condemning workplace harassment.

In fact it was Sask Party MLA Nancy Heppner's big deal at the time:

"It is misconduct for managers and supervisors who know of workplace harassment not to take immediate corrective action."
- April 4th, 2007 Hansard, Page 1118 (link)

"Why weren’t earlier harassment complaints taken seriously?"
- April 5th, 2007 Hansard, Page 1214 (link)

And another Sask Party MLA June Draude had this to say:

"ignoring harassment complaints is in itself a violation of the harassment policy."
- April 3rd, 2007 Hansard, Page 1115 (link)

Yet, at about the same time that these Sask Party MLA's were getting up and denoucing workplace harassment in the government and blaming the NDP for doing nothing, what was going on?

One of the Sask Party candidates was guilty of workplace harassment as well. And what was the Sask Party doing?

They were ignoring the harassment complaints, they were not taking them seriously and they were not taking corrective action (until now when they got caught)

In other words, they were doing exactly what they were standing up in the house every day, for day after day, and doing, until they got caught.

But wait, what does the Sask Party have to say about ignoring workplace harassment and then getting caught doing it? Well, one of their MLAs Donna Harpauer had this to say:

It’s just crisis management. That is all it is. This is crisis management because they got caught. They got caught...So let’s have that investigation. Let’s
find out what went wrong here. Who knew? Who knew? ...is it okay with these members that people that covered it up are still employed. Is that okay? Is that zero tolerance? And I don’t think it is. Talk to these victims [of workplace harassment] and see how they feel.
- April 5th, 2007 Hansard, Page 1112 (link)

So there is at least one Sask Party MLA who thinks people who cover up workplace harassment should be fired. That there should be an investigation in this sort of situation.

Interesting. I wonder if she is going to come out and demand an investigation in this sort of circumstance?

oh, and by the way, what is the very next comment made by Sask Party MLA Donna Harpauer that day:

"You know, the member from Regina Walsh Acres, someone needs to take her to the back room and give her the . . ."
Oh yes, that is a famous phrase, remember?

This is how seriously the Sask Party takes workplace harassment, THEY DO IT THEMSELVES.

Harpauer said someone should "take her to the backroom and give her the horse ...,'' then stopped.

Harpauer later said the self-censored phrase was horseshit, adding she was referring to the backroom where cabinet ministers go after question period to be briefed by staff before facing reporters.

But Morin said she believed Harpauer was about to say horsewhipped.

Through tears, Morin later told reporters that the comment reminded her of when she was assaulted at a previous job.

Kowalsky ruled Wednesday that Harpauer's comments were unparliamentary.

"They constitute a personal attack on another member and caused considerable disorder in the chamber,'' he said.
What else could you call a "personal attack" against Sandra Morin, in her workplace (The Saskatchewan Legislature) if not workplace harassment?

The Sask Party are a bunch of political opportunists who used the issue of workplace harassment for political advantage all the while doing it themselves in the legislature, and covering up one of their own candidates doing the same thing.

To elect these people would be a tragedy.

Upperdate: On a lighter note Big City Lib has some specualtion as to what Mr. Harder may have said. Worth a read.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Sask Party is Only Party Not to Field Full Slate of Candidates

From the Sask Party site:

Saskatchewan Party candidate Dan Harder has withdrawn his candidacy for the Regina Walsh Acres constituency in the November 7 provincial election.

The decision was made after Saskatchewan Party Leader Brad Wall learned the details of a 2006 complaint made by employees against Harder while he was the Executive Director of the Regina Big Brothers. The complaint involved allegations of inappropriate comments made by Harder to employees.

Harder responded to the complaint at the time and no further action was taken on the complaint by Big Brothers. However, after learning the details of the complaint and Harder’s response, Wall felt Harder could not continue as a Saskatchewan Party candidate.

Wall said he had been aware that there was a complaint against Harder, but only learned of the details of the matter today.

Hmmm. I wonder if he got severance after being dismissed for harassment? And if he did and the Sask Party knew about that, then their whole spring legislative session attacking Murdoch Carrierre was pure bullshit.

Update: Yep, it was for harassment, read about the pure hypocrisy here

Not to mention all their "we have a code of ethics" crap. And all of the "don't the NDP know who is running for them" crap.

And these are the people that might get entrusted with the public purse?

Lying Liars and the Lies They Tell.

Sask Party Attack Website

Now, I don't agree with the information on this website, but the tactic of the website is not objectionable to me. (I do find it funny that they are still stealing all their images from the NDP because they are too lazy to have their own, but now they at least are following the law and sourcing them properly)

But what about all the whopping and hollering over the Wolf in Sheep's Clothing campaign? I mean, the comments section of Small Dead Animals got bat-shit crazy condemning the NDP for, quote, "Negative Campaigning" but the newspapers condemned the NDP for lowing the debate.

So I assume the same condemnation will befall the Sask Party, right?


*sound of crickets chirping*

Friday, October 26, 2007

Liberal Party of Saskatchewan Plaform Wildly Inconsistent

Hey, remember when David Kawarcki was all about Saskatchewan getting "debt free in a decade"

You know, it was his big complaint after the Saskatchewan Budget:

One of the more interesting ideas to emerge from Thursday's budget debate was Liberal Leader David Karwacki's goal of making Saskatchewan "debt-free in a decade.''

Karwacki's view is that billion-dollar windfalls from non-renewable resource revenues should be used, not for ongoing operations, like health and education, but for permanent debt reduction.

With the province shelling out more than $500 million a year in interest payments, Karwacki says paying down the debt would free up half a billion bucks a year for future economic and social development programs.

And he made it part of a big speech as reported by prairie fire:

We need to get to work to become debt-free in a decade. To leave this province a better place than we found it for our children.

John Murney over at his blog thought it was a great idea:

Saskatchewan could probably be debt free in about 10-15 years. Wiping out the debt in 10 years is very ambitious. I commend Karwacki for at least having the vision and the gumption to suggest the idea.

It is mentioned on the Liberal website here:

This $400 million dollar infrastructure investment would be funded through the sale of SaskFerco. Additional funds from the sale would be directed towards debt reduction along with our plan to be debt free in a decade.
And on one of his candidate's sites here:

Our plan for becoming Debt Free in a Decade will give us the flexibility we need to leave our children and grandchildren with a bright future full of opportunity.

One place where it doesn't appear?

The Liberal Platform which has exactly $0 for debt reduction. That's right, not a single cent over 4 years.

Is Karwacki just stupid and forgot all of his promises and all of his speeches?

Or was he just full of shit to begin with?

You decide.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Once Again, the NDP Out-Greens the Greens

I wonder why the Green Party of Saskatchewan didn't make this announcement:

Premier Lorne Calvert today announced that the Saskatchewan NDP would take steps to compensate for greenhouse gas emissions produced by the NDP central campaign and Leader’s Tour during the 2007 election.

“Creating a greener Saskatchewan is one of our five major commitments in this election,” Calvert said. “We want to demonstrate that we don’t just talk the talk; we walk the walk. That’s why we are working with Saskatchewan organizations to address our greenhouse gas emissions during this campaign and purchase green power.”

By offsetting emissions from the campaign motorhome, staff and campaign vehicles, and heating and electricity for the central campaign office, the NDP will compensate for almost 30 tonnes of carbon dioxide and purchase 20,000 kilowatt-hours of green power. In addition, the NDP will encourage its 58 local campaigns to also offset and use green power.

“We have calculated how much carbon our campaign will produce, and we will contribute $1,200 to the Saskatchewan Environmental Society to compensate for those emissions,” Calvert said. “In addition, by purchasing $500 of green power from SaskPower, our campaign is investing in the future of cleaner power generation in Saskatchewan.”

Oh yeah, 'cause the Green Party of Saskatchewan is just like the Green Party of Canada, well-meaning, but inept.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Saskatchewan Election Prediction Update

In my last pre-election post on election predictions I made the following point:

The seats to watch are the following ones:

Wascana Plains in Regina.
Greystone in Saskatoon
Meewasin in Saskatoon
Northwest in Saskatoon
Meadow Lake
Saskatchewan Rivers

I am starting to hear some rumblings from people on both sides about a couple of these seats.

In Yorkton the NDP is running a strong campaign with a lot of support for the local councilor in the city of Yorkton proper, but not so much support from the rural area. This does not bode well for the NDP in this seat as they need to at least win a couple of polls in the rural to make up for the new suburban south-east end of the city of Yorkton proper, which the Sask Party has wrapped up. I am not ready to concede this seat yet, but it is on life-support.

The flip side of that is Sask Rivers. I hear from a friend of mine in the Sask Party that they are not getting the traction they need in the seat and I also hear that the NDP campaign office opening had 800 people out. If that's true, then this seat will be an NDP hold. (Perhaps defying conventional wisdom)

I have another friend who is involved in the Greystone campaign and says that the NDP are holding all of thier support from last time in the seat. If she is not lieing to me (and I have no reason to suspect she is being untruthful) the NDP will hold Greystone.

The Liberals are cratering in Saskatoon and will be lucky to get 10% of the vote in the entire city. So unless that 10% all live in Meewassin that means that Karwacki is done for (again). If this 10% stat hold true, the NDP will actually increase their percentage win in this seat (which may be the only seat in the province where this is the case)

And, sadly, I am afraid that it is time to concede Regina Wascana Plains. It does look like this will be the most likely pickup for the Sask Party.

So here was my summary going into this post:

Province-Wide Summary:
NDP: 24
SP: 25
Too Close: 9

I am giving Regina WP to the Sask Party and I am giving Greystone and Meewasin to the NDP. Yorkton and Sask Rivers remain too close to call but leaning in particular directions and I have no new information on the rest.

New Province-Wide Summary:
NDP: 26
SP: 26
Too Close: 6

I have said one thing all along, that this election was going to be closer than a lot of people thought. These numbers are looking like that will be true.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Sask NDP Announce Wait Time Plan

Health wait times is one of the areas where even New Democrats admit that there is some work that can be done.

Luckily, we are:

Premier Lorne Calvert today announced several new initiatives to further strengthen and preserve public health care in Saskatchewan. In addition to announcing plans for a second surgical care centre, this one to be located in Saskatoon, the Premier says an NDP government will expand cancer screening and prevention programs.

"Publicly funded and operated day surgery centres make good sense, helping to free up hospital space and resources for more complex procedures, while reducing surgical and diagnostic wait times," Calvert said. "With two day surgery centres, including the one underway in Regina, wait times will be reduced significantly and patients will receive their day procedures more quickly."

Once fully operational, the Regina surgical centre will be equipped to perform up to 10,000 surgical and diagnostic procedures each year, and the one in Saskatoon will perform up to 20,000. These procedures may include cataract surgeries; ear, nose and throat surgeries; joint arthroscopies; biopsies; and hernia repairs. Approximately 75,000 operating room procedures were completed last year; more than half were day surgeries.

It is only part of the solution, not the whole package, but it is a good step forward.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Sask Party Violates Copyright Law

So the SaskParty website has a series of negative quotes about the NDP on thier web page overlayed on top of different pictures of Lorne Calvert. (The yellow boxes in the screen shots below)

The problem is that all those photos come from the Sask NDP website which has a copyright notice at the bottom of the screen. (Hard to see from my screen shot but go and look yourself) Note: I particularly like the last image from the SP that has the Sask NDP logo in it and is obviously from the NDP convention.

Now I know what all the right-wingers are going to say - "fair use", "fair use"

One small problem

The Copyright Act lays out permissible exceptions to copyright infringement in its section on fair dealing. “The Copyright Act provides that any "fair dealing" with a work for purposes of private study or research, or for criticism, review or news reporting is not infringement. However, in the case of criticism, review, or news reporting, the user is required to give the source and the author's, performer's, sound recording maker's or broadcaster's name, if known” (Canadian Intellectual Property Office). If you read the Copyright Act, you’ll notice that there are no specifics about how much of a work can be used for these purposes, such as a particular number of lines or paragraphs.

If you want to read the relevant section in the Canadian Law it is here

I don't see the Sask Party site citing the source anywhere, do you?

More importantly, how lazy and stupid of a political party do you have to be to not have your own pictures of the opposition to use?

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Amature YouTube and the Saskatchewan Election

When it comes to Saskatchewan election ads, we've seen the best, now let's look at the rest...

I know it supports "my" party. But what the hell??????

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Saskatchewan Party Web-Site Foul-Up!

Hmmm. Remember when the NDP put up their new web site and small dead animals and others spent all their time poring over it looking for the slightest mistake? Perhaps all that right-wing energy should have went into teaching Brad Wall how to use his web site.

Buckdog has the story:

Over the weekend, someone with the Saskatchewan Party's campaign made a huge screw up. For a brief while, their entire 28 day campaign - planks, announcements and television ads, were left unprotected for all to see. The press got their hands on the entire package and the 28 day Saskatchewan Party campaign is now public knowledge.

First of all, there is nothing overly remarkable in the package. A little tax tinking here, a little there ... much less than what would have been expected considering the shrieking and theatrics the Party has utilized over the last year in the Saskatchewan Legislature.

So what now? Well, it looks like Brad Wall and the Saskatchewan Party are going to soldier on without any element of surprise or timing for the next three weeks.

It does leave one to wonder how well they would run the government of the province when they can't even run a website!

Hah! Snark.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Premier Lorne Calvert on a Universal Pharmacare Program

It's time to hear about this straight from the source:

Certainly Medicare has a proud history in Saskatchewan. We invented it.

We invented it because, in the words of the Greatest Canadian Tommy Douglas, we believed that healthcare is too important to come with a price tag attached.

We believe that it’s your health card that should determine the services you get under Medicare, not your credit card.

Friends, I was very proud, in the spring of this year, to vote in favour of a budget that had within it the single most important improvement to a provincial Medicare plan in this country in a generation, the Seniors Drug Plan.

We believed then and we believe now that no senior citizen in the province of Saskatchewan should ever have to make a decision about which prescription he or she is going to fill in any given month.

We believe that no senior citizen in the province of Saskatchewan should have to choose between filling a prescription and buying gift for a grandchild.

And so we capped the cost of prescription medications listed in the provincial formulary, for seniors, at $15 per prescription.

Our province’s seniors and elders, whose contributions to Saskatchewan are incalculable, are no longer required to make these types of choices.

But friends, we also know that you don’t have to be 65 years old or older to be burdened by high cost prescription drugs. There are times when those costs represent a severe burden, and a measurable deterioration of a person’s, or a family’s, quality of life.

There are cases when the costs associated with prescription drugs are truly catastrophic.

It’s interesting to note that my predecessor, Premier Romanow, in his 2002 report on the future of healthcare in Canada, which was commissioned by the federal government, called for a catastrophic drug transfer program that would enable provinces to offset the sometimes unmanageable drug costs of their citizens.

Premier Romanow repeated his call for nationally funded catastrophic drug coverage in November of last year.

The federal government, not surprisingly, didn’t hear him. But we did.

Friends, our mission is to make life better for Saskatchewan families. Our mission is to ensure that all Saskatchewan people benefit from our strong and prosperous economy.

Our mission is to preserve, strengthen, and lead Canada in the provision of publicly funded and publicly delivered healthcare.

Today we take the next step.

Today, I am pleased to announce that an NDP government will introduce a Universal Drug Plan, modeled on the Seniors Drug Plan, effective July 1st, 2008—the 46th anniversary of Saskatchewan Medicare.

The Seniors’ Drug Plan works. Seniors and elders across Saskatchewan have repeatedly expressed their approval of the program to me personally.

The time has now come to extend those benefits to everyone in Saskatchewan so that a family’s ability to pay will no longer determine whether they get the prescription drugs they need.

Like the existing Seniors Drug Plan, the Universal Drug Plan will ensure that no one will pay more than $15 per prescription for drugs listed in the Saskatchewan formulary. If your prescription cost is less than $15 you will continue to pay the lower amount.

Friends, this program places Saskatchewan at the forefront of Medicare delivery in Canada, precisely where we belong, precisely where an NDP government will always insist on being.

We do not expect Brad Wall and the Sask Party to ever support such a program. They didn’t support the Seniors Drug Plan. They voted against the Seniors Drug Plan. They pay feeble lip service to the principles of Medicare itself.

Today’s announcement makes the choice in this election ever more clear.

It is a choice between a New Democratic Party dedicated to the principle that all Saskatchewan people should enjoy the benefits of our prosperous and growing economy, and a Sask Party made up of the philosophical heirs and political apprentices of those who have fought Medicare every step of the way since 1962.

We will deliver this program to the people of Saskatchewan, and this leadership to the people of Canada.

We will move forward together.

Thank you.

Days like this make me proud to be a New Democrat.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Liberal Candidate to drop out and endorse NDP

I am hearing rumors that one of the Liberal candidates is about to drop out of the race and endorse the NDP candidate in his or her constituency. I rate this rumor with a probability of 9 out of 10

If true, this is both awesome and hilarious.

Stay tuned

Tax Credits for Middle Class vs. Programming and Facilities for All

The Saskatchewan election is taking a play from the playbook of the Federal election. The Sask Party is offering tax credits that benefit a few (Those who pay tax) vs. the NDP plan to benefit everybody.

The NDP has learned that Brad Wall intends to unveil a $150 child-tax benefit, for kids taking music and art lessons, or enrolled in sports.

"I am a strong believer in the value of arts, cultural and sports activities in the healthy development of all children" [NDP Candidate Sandra] Morin said. "Wall's plan only helps families who are already able to enroll their children in music, art and sports activities but does nothing for those who can not afford these activities for their children. Wouldn't that money be better spent on programming in schools and community facilities so that all children can benefit?

"An NDP government will ensure that families have more money in their pockets to be able to enroll their children in activities such as sports, and art and music classes. With the NDP's universal drug plan, our lowest cost utility bundles and other initiatives we are making sure that all Saskatchewan families share in the prosperity they helped create."
It seems to me that this is just like the Sask Party's drug plan where they only want certain people to beneft whereas the NDP plan is universal.

Why does the Sask Party keep wanting to pick winners and losers in the population?

Friday, October 12, 2007

Saskatchewan Election "Battle of the Student Tuition Plans"

The Saskatchewan NDP has released the following plan:

Premier Lorne Calvert today announced plans to give young people even greater access to affordable post-secondary education and more reason to build their futures in Saskatchewan.

"An NDP government means that Saskatchewan students will be the first in Canada to see their undergraduate university tuition reduced by $1,000 in the 2008-09 school year, in addition to benefiting from a tuition freeze that will continue next year.

"This brings our tuition to well below the Canadian average, and your NDP team will make sure it remains well below the Canadian average in future years. By linking tuition to the Consumer Price Index, your NDP team is providing students with tuition protection," the Premier said.

Last year alone, the tuition freeze saved students an average of $1,500. An additional $1,000 in savings for each university undergraduate will ensure the cost of post-secondary education remains within reach of students.
This is building on the McCall report:

"Following extensive consultation throughout Saskatchewan, Regina Elphinstone-Centre MLA Warren McCall, now Minister of Corrections and Public Safety developed 45 options and recommendations. "

Wheres the Sask Party Plan is a little weak:

Students will lose under Brad Wall's policy. Tuitions will skyrocket. There will be no tuition reduction and no tuition protection from future increases...Unlike the Sask Party, the NDP welcomes young graduates from out of province who choose to pursue their careers and build their future in Saskatchewan. How is this complicated Sask Party program any incentive for people to come back to Saskatchewan and build their futures?
I think this one goes to the NDP

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Saskatchewan Ellection Call coming soon!

I just heard a rumor through the grapevine that Premier Calvert's nomination is Wednesday night. That means the election will be called probably on Thursday or Friday of this week.

Stay tuned!

Update: Whoops! Called on Wednesday night.

Friday, October 05, 2007


Thursday, October 04, 2007

Saskatchewan Election Predictions - Wrap Up

I made a series of 5 posts examining each of the 58 constituencies in the province of Saskatchewan and my analysis on the outcome of the next provincial election.

Part 1 - The South

Sask Party: 9
NDP: 2

Part 2 - Regina

NDP: 10
SP: 0
Too Close: 1

Part 3 - Central Saskatchewan

NDP: 0
SP: 10
Too Close: 2

Part 4 - Saskatoon

NDP: 7
SP: 2
Too Close: 3

Part 5 - The North

NDP: 5
SP: 5
Too Close: 3

Province-Wide Summary:

NDP: 24
SP: 25
Too Close: 9

The seats to watch are the following ones:

Wascana Plains in Regina.
Greystone in Saskatoon
Meewasin in Saskatoon
Northwest in Saskatoon
Meadow Lake
Saskatchewan Rivers

So as polling and other data comes out, I will be applying analysis to these 9 seats. Now the Sask Party does have a small advantage in that they only have to win 5 of these seats but the NDP have to win 6 of them (to form a 30-seat majority government) but the flip side of that is that 6 of them are incumbent NDP seats and only Wascana planes and Greystone do not have the incumbent MLA running for the NDP (but new candidates) .

I am not ready to make my final prediction about who is going to win the election yet, but I will say this: IT WILL BE CLOSE.

either side will be racking up an impressive win here, either the NDP will squeek through again with a small majority, or the Sask Party will manage to edge out enough to form the government by a couple of seats.

If the Liberals were at ALL competative, I would actualy predict a minority government again (like in 1999) but with the possible exception of Meewasin, they cannot win any seats so that probability is out.

It is going to be an exciting election, so stay tuned. (Oh yeah, my prediction for the call of the election is on the 16th of October so we are less than two weeks away)

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Saskatchewan Election Predictions - Part 5

This is the fifth in a series of 5 posts examining each of the 58 constituencies in the province of Saskatchewan and my analysis on the outcome of the next provincial election.

Part 1 - The South

Sask Party: 9
NDP: 2

Part 2 - Regina

NDP: 10
SP: 0
Too Close: 1

Part 3 - Central Saskatchewan

NDP: 0
SP: 9
Too Close: 2

Part 4 - Saskatoon

NDP: 7
SP: 2
Too Close: 3

Part 5 - The North

Traditionaly a strong area for the NDP, with the two northern-most seats being rock solid bastions of NDP support.

1. Lloydminster

Margin of Victory for SP (2003): 1%

Now this one is very interesting, the raw vote difference was 64 votes in 2003, but there was very low turnout on the Onion Lake reserve. Interestingly enough, the NDP candidate is from that reserve (with over 1000 voters). Let's say that only 75% of the people who voted NDP last time do again, (a huge drop - over 10% in the popular vote) and then lets say the NDP candidate gets 50% of the voters in Onion lake to the polls. The NDP would then win quite handily. At the very least, this seat is far to close to call

Prediction: To Close to Call

2. Cut-Knife Turtleford

Margin of Victory for SP: 10%

This will remain Sask Party

3. Rostern Shellbrook

Margin of Victory for SP: 14%

This will remain Sask Party

4. Martinsville

Margin of Victory for SP: 30%

This will remain Sask Party

5. Batoche

Margin of Victory for SP: 7%

I know that NDP types are saying that this will be a possible pick-up for them based on their strong candidate (the son of the former MP from the area) . I think they may improve their share of the popular vote but 7% in a tough year is a lot of ground to make up. For the time being I am going to have to concede this seat to the SP.

Prediction: SP Hold.

6. Prince Albert Northcote

Margin of Victory for NDP: 30%

This will be and NDP hold. Both the Prince Albert seats have new candidates for the NDP and the results are bound to not be quite as decisive as last time. But PA has been rock-solid for the NDP for almost 3 decades now and with 30% leads (and absolute majorities) in both seats, both are staying orange on election night.

Prediction: NDP Hold

7. Prince Albert Carlton

Margin of Victory for SP: 30%

This will remain an NDP hold. See above.

8. Sask Rivers

Margin of Victory for NDP: 8%

The Sask Party has obviously targeted this seat. However, keep in mind that not only did the NDP MLA take this seat away from the Sask Party last time due to hard work and on-the-ground campaigning, but since then has become a cabinet minister that by all accounts has worked very hard for his riding. Also the SP decision to oppose the pulp mill deal is killing them in this seat. I am going to mark it as to close to call for the time being, but I would not be at all surprised if this was an NDP win on election night.

Prediction: To Close to Call

9. Carrot-River Valley

Margin of Victory for SP: 4%

This will remain Sask Party, but probably just barley, they did the smart thing and got rid of their biggest liability, the Sask Party incumbent, who kept trying to run in other seats and never showed up in the legislature. Flooding has also hurt the NDP in this area. All of this being said, if it looks for sure that the NDP is going to form government, this is a seat that could move.

Prediction: Weak Sask Party.

10. Meadow Lake

Margin of Victory for NDP: 6%

This was probably the best chance that the SP hadfor a pick-up in the whole province. However, they keep nominating bad people. Their first candidate resigned in a cloud of suspicion and their new candidate is the only Conservative incumbent MP in the country to lose to a Liberal in the 2006 election campaign. He has also referred to First Nations as "Banana Republics" which isn't going to be an asset for him in a seat that has 8 or 9 reserves. This should be a SP pick-up but due to their bungling, I am marking it as too close to call.

Prediction: To Close to Call

11. The Battlefords

Margin of victory by NDP: 20%

Without a strong Liberal candidate (like the incumbent in 2003) this seat gets even better for the NDP.

This will be an NDP hold.

12. Athabasca

Margin of Victory for NDP: 50% (Yes, that's right, the NDP got 70% of the vote)

This will remain NDP

13. Cumberland

Margin of Victory for NDP: 48% (Told you the north was solid)

This will remain NDP

Part 5 Summary:

NDP: 5
SP: 5
Too Close: 3

To-Date Summary:
NDP: 24
SP: 25
Too Close: 9

Check back for the full summary and anlaysis

Monday, October 01, 2007

Saskatchewan Election Predictions - Part 4

This is the fourth in a series of 5 posts examining each of the 58 constituencies in the province of Saskatchewan and my analysis on the outcome of the next provincial election.

Part 1 - The South

Sask Party: 9
NDP: 2

Part 2 - Regina

NDP: 10
SP: 0
Too Close: 1

Part 3 - Central Saskatchewan

NDP: 0
SP: 9
Too Close: 2

Part 4 - Saskatoon

Saskatoon is always a key battleground for the NDP and this election will not be any different.

1. Saskatoon NorthWest

Margin of Victory for SP (2003): 3%

The NDP just lost this seat in 2003 with the lame (former Liberal) candidate Jim Melenchuck. Also, the Liberals got over 20% of the vote here and could act as a spoiler for any candidate. The SP are the incumbents and on the upswing, but the candidate that they have nominated is controversial to say the least (Calling the Charter of Rights and Freedoms a "Piece of Garbage" and making what could be considered off-color comments about Jewish people) . There are just to many factors up in the air in a seat that has been won by all three parties in the last three elections.

Prediction: To Close to Call.

2. Meewasin

Margin of Victory for the NDP: 7%

This is another interesting on. This would normally be a solid NDP seat but this is the seat where the Liberal leader ran last time (he has run in other places since) and I assume that he will be running here again. Of course, he was beaten by a person that was nominated 2 weeks before the election that no one had ever heard of - Frank Quennell. Quennell has gone on to be a high-profile cabinet minister for the NDP and has been working hard in his local constituency to keep the people there on side. I personally think that Quennell will hold the seat but I grant that this is the only seat in the province that the Liberals stand a chance in, so I would assume they will throw all of their resources into it (Course, being Liberals in Saskatchewan they will probably throw all their resources into say, Rosemont where they don't have a snowball's chance in hell). Ignoring typical Liberal bumbling, I am going to have to put this one down as too close to call.

Prediction: Too Close to Call

3. Silver Springs

Margin of Victory for SP: 4%

This one will remain close but in the SP camp.

Prediction: Weakly Sask Party.

4. Fairview

Margin of Victory for NDP: 30%

This will be an NDP hold.

5. Massey Place

Margin of Victory for NDP: 40%

This will be an NDP hold.

6. Sutherland

Margin of Victory for NDP: 20%

There has been some talk that the SP will pick up this seat. I doubt it. Both the Liberals and the SP get over 20% in this seat but the NDP get almost a clear majority (46%) . The NDP will probably drop a bit in this seat but the problem for both opposition parties is that the vote will split between them, allowing the NDP to run up the middle.

Prediction: NDP Hold.

7. Saskatoon Center

Margin of Victory for NDP: 40%

This will be an NDP hold.

8. Riversdale

Margin of Victory for NDP: 40%

This will be an NDP hold.

9. Nutana

Margin of Victory for NDP: 35%

This will be an NDP hold.

10. Eastview

Margin of Victory for NDP: 25%

Same deal as Sutherland - Both the Liberals and the SP get over 20% in this seat but the NDP get almost a clear majority (44%) . Again, the NDP will probably drop a bit in this seat but the problem for both opposition parties is that the vote will split between them, allowing the NDP to run up the middle.

11. Greystone

Margin of Victory for NDP: 18%

This is going to be a key seat. The NDP are running a brand new candidate (albeit one who won all the Federal polls in the seat as a Federal candidate) and this has to be on the SP list as a target seat.

Prediction: To Close to Call.

12. Saskatoon Southeast

Margin of Victory for SP: 8%

This will be an Sask Party hold.

Part 4 Summary:

NDP: 7
SP: 2
Too Close: 3

To-Date Summary:
NDP: 19
SP: 21
Too Close: 6

Check back tomorrow for part 5 - the north. Then I will post my final predictions for the outcome and a list of seats to watch on election night.