Thursday, January 26, 2012

Western Polls Gone Wild

Three polls of the two largest Western provinces have come out this week - one for BC, two for Alberta; two done by Forum, one done by Léger - showing different fates for everyone involved right now.

One poll I already covered, and then argued with David Climenhaga over. Now there's two other polls to come out that are worth covering.

First, let's look at an Alberta poll done by Léger Marketing, which showed the following results:

53% PC
16% Wildrose
13% NDP
11% Liberal
2% Alberta Party

This kind of low Opposition vote allows for an amusing vote split in terms of seats. With this poll (87-seat legislature) I'd get 79 PC, 5 NDP, 3 Wildrose. That's right - an NDP Official Opposition with 13% of the vote. That's because they're all concentrated in Edmonton.

This is in contrast to Forum's poll of Alberta, which gave the Wildrosers 20 seats on 29% of the vote, and the PCs 57 seats on 38% of the vote. It's a big difference but unfortunately, we can't know who is right - Forum or Leger - until we see more polls come out. Both Leger and Forum have good track records in other provinces and federally, so it's tough to make the call. We'll see.

Speaking of Forum, their poll in BC showed the following:

39% BC NDP
26% BC Liberal
22% BC Conservative
9% Green

Fairly different from Forum's December poll of the province, which showed 34-23-23-15. So what's really happened here is the collapse of the Green vote, and minute shifts between the Libs and Cons. Anyways the seat results would be 57 NDP, 13 Lib, 13 Cons, 2 Independents.

Now, I'm still considering Forum's results in BC a bit of an outlier (which is not the situation in Alberta, at least not yet). There's been more polls out at regular intervals - though not like it is federally. I'm not going to get ahead of myself on that, and Forum could be right. There is, after all, a lot of lashing out against the Clark government.

Overall, however, these polls show steady trends - BC Liberal drop, BC Con gain, BC NDP steady; PC gain, Wildrose second, NDP steady at high end of what they'll get under Mason, ALP dying off.

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