Thursday, March 24, 2011

Have the NDP lost Gatineau already?

Looks like Francoise Boivin won't be returning to Parliament any time soon, at least according to this Segma marketing poll:

Dans Gatineau, où la marge d'erreur est de 5,5 %, le député bloquiste Richard Nadeau remporterait la victoire haut la main avec 36,8 % des intentions de vote. Le PLC, représenté par Steven MacKinnon, obtiendrait pour sa part 22,3 % des voix, suivi par le PCC à 18,8 %. Le NPD, qui avait fait bonne figure lors de l'élection de 2008 avec la candidate Françoise Boivin se classe en quatrième position avec 15,5 % des voix.
In case you can't reach French (like me, though I can guess fairly well), the poll puts Bloc MP Richard Nadeau at a strong 36.8%, the Liberal Party's Steven MacKinnon second with 22.3%, the Conservatives with 18.8%, and Francoise Boivin with 15.5%. This is compared to 2008, when the Bloc got 29.1%, Boivin running as a Dipper with 26.1%, Liberal candidate Michel Simard with 25.4%, and the Conservatives rounding fourth with 16.8%. Quite a difference, to be sure - and one outside of the margin of error, though that doesn't necessarily mean much.

To be fair, riding polls like this are never to be taken seriously. Too small of a sample size, poor regional distribution, and a confluence of local and at-the-moment factors can skew a result heavily. So, this Segma doesn't necessarily reflect reality, though Eric at 308.com says they have something of a good track record with these riding-specific polls.

But even if this poll can be brushed off, there's continuing signs that Gatineau will not be an easy target for the NDP to capture, giving them their second seat in the province of Quebec.

Take a look at the two riding projections that we've been provided by both 308.com, and another less-well-known site, Too Close to Call. Here's what they, with the most up-to-date figures, have given the results to be in the riding:

308.com: BQ - 31.4%, NDP - 25.2%, Lib - 22.8%, Con - 15.7%
TCTC: BQ - 32.3%, NDP - 27.0%, Lib - 24.9%, Con - 14.9%

So right off the bat here, it's easy to see that the numbers aren't destined to change a heck of a lot from 2008, with a slightly higher Bloc number, and slightly lower Lib and Con numbers. The NDP more or less stay the same. And let's be honest, if they couldn't use Boivin's star power to get them the seat in 2008, the likelihood of them getting it now with her isn't likely; she's not been in the news, she hasn't done anything big near as I can tell, and the Bloc is on the upswing in the province. According to these projections and the polls, Segma and general polls both (aside from Leger and CROP), they've yet to have a real game-changing moment in the province of Quebec.

My guess? Bloc hold due to Lib-NDP split. It won't be the other way around.

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