Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Will Marois and the PQ Sweep Gaspé?

The Globe and Mail has an interesting article pointing out PQ Leader Pauline Marois' belief that a sweep of the three ridings that make up the Gaspé region of Québec.

It is an interesting notion, and one that isn't crazy either. The péquistes swept the Gaspé in 1994, the Oui campaign didn't do too badly in the '95 referendum, and federally the riding of Gaspésie--Îles-de-la-Madeleine was fairly good for the Bloc, with he partially-covering riding of Haute-Gaspésie represented by a Bloc member. This is all to say, it's not crazy to see a good péquiste sweep of the area in an off-year for the Parti libéral.

But will it happen this year? If we take current polling at face value (which we should never do, but in that case, meh), then no, it isn't likely, though they are damn close to it.

In this comparison, the PQ have the slightest of advantages in Gaspé and Îles-de-la-Madaleine, while competitive in Bonaventure (though based mostly off their score in the 2011 by-election). The CAQ have little chance in these ridings, and neither do the other third parties.

Yet it isn't clear cut, either. The riding of Gaspé, which took on a whole new section of the old riding of Matane that was fairly PQ-leaning, is still a dogfight between the PLQ and the PQ. Same with Îles-de-la-Madeleine, which is still the same riding. Bonaventure gained only a small part of the riding of Gaspé and looks set to remain a PLQ riding, unless Marois really storms ahead. But its all competitive, and local factors will play a big part in deciding who will win and who will lose this time around.

My prediction? Gaspé and Îles-de-la-Madeleine will likely trend péquiste, while Bonaventure, which refused to throw out the Liberals when they had the chance to just last year, will remain red.

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