Monday, April 15, 2013

Detailed #LPCLdr By the Numbers & Analysis

So, in an effort to give myself carpal tunnel issues, I've managed to get the raw vote counts for all 308 ridings in Canada, collate them into one place, and have fun with the data. I may or may not put up a PDF file with all the ridings and the numbers associated with them, but I'll leave that for later.

Anyways, to begin with, here are the topline numbers in terms of votes, not points:

Justin Trudeau: 81,386 votes - 78.8% (80.1% of points)
Joyce Murray: 12,148 votes - 11.8% (10.2% of points)
Martha Hall Findlay: 6,586 votes - 6.4% (5.7% of points)
Martin Cauchon: 1,639 votes - 1.6% (2.7% of points)
Deborah Coyne: 843 votes - 0.8% (0.7% of points)
Karen McCrimmon: 738 votes - 0.7% (0.7% of points)
Total: 103,340 votes (plus 1,212 blank ballots)

 First off, we did avoid some of the possible issues we could've had with the points system, with variations between the percentage of votes received and the percentage of points received relatively close, within 2-points for everyone. So that's good.

What is slightly distressing is that over 1,200 ballots were blank or invalid, a total that exceeds two of the candidates vote totals! A lot of these came from Atlantic Canada and Quebec, where a few ridings saw not just a few here and there that were blank, but dozens of blank ballots in one riding alone! Why this was I'm still not sure, but it somewhat correlated (at least from my point of view) with francophone ridings. Either our instructions were not very good, the online voting failed for the region, or a lot of people were upset with every and all the candidates. Not that it really mattered, given the 69,000-vote lead Trudeau managed to grab. I'm still curious as to what happened.

Let's look at the regional breakdown, we'll go one by one, same format as above:

British Columbia
Trudeau: 7,556 votes - 58.5% (63.6%)
Murray: 4,236 votes - 32.8% (27.9%)
Hall Findlay: 839 votes - 6.5% (6.2%)
Coyne: 120 votes - 0.9% (0.9%)
Cauchon: 86 votes - 0.7% (0.6%)
McCrimmon: 85 votes - 0.7% (0.7%)
Total: 12,922 votes (plus 66 blanks)

The only province where Trudeau faced any serious opposition, BC still ended up a landslide for the wunderkid. While Murray did win in five ridings, Trudeau dominated in the other 31 and stopped Murray from gaining any momentum outside of her core in Vancouver and two peripheral ridings. This is where Murray and the co-op movement started and, unfortunately for them, ended. Had Murray done better in BC, especially if she had won the province, the argument could be made that the co-op movement had some weight behind it - obviously this wasn't the case.

Trudeau: 5,422 votes - 74.5% (74.9%)
Murray: 835 votes - 11.5% (12.0%)
Hall Findlay: 793 votes - 10.9% (9.9%)
McCrimmon: 78 votes - 1.1% (1.2%)
Coyne: 78 votes - 1.1% (1.0%)
Cauchon: 73 votes - 1.0% (1.0%)
Total: 7,279 votes (plus 62 blanks)

While Albertans as a whole may not be Trudeau-friendly, Alberta Liberals seem to love the guy as much as the rest of the country. This was also Martha Hall Findlay's best province, which isn't saying much but I know she tried to make an effort out there. While there was no significant urban/rural split in terms of voting preference, urban ridings accounted for almost 3/4s of all the votes in the province, which isn't how it is in reality.

Prairies (Saskitoba)
Trudeau: 4,547 votes - 78.5% (78.4%)
Murray: 621 votes - 10.7% (10.5%)
Hall Findlay: 466 votes - 8.0% (8.6%)
Cauchon: 72 votes - 1.2% (1.0%)
Coyne: 57 votes - 1.0% (0.8%)
McCrimmon: 33 votes - 0.6% (0.7%)
Total: 5,796 votes (plus 74 blanks)

Not much to say about the Prairie provinces, except that quite a few of those 5,800 votes came from Winnipeg - 41% to be exact. Oh, and Hall Findlay eeked out for second in Saskatchewan ahead of Murray, with 10.4%. Again, not much comfort but hey, its something right?

Overall in the West, Trudeau had a landslide win of 67.4% to Murray's 21.9%. However, these numbers are somewhat competitive; in the rest of Canada, it isn't anywhere as close as these numbers are. I'll elaborate more on this after we get through the other areas.

Trudeau: 39,369 votes - 80.4% (82.9%)
Murray: 4,878 votes - 10.0% (8.6%)
Hall Findlay: 3,327 votes - 6.8% (5.9%)
Cauchon: 499 votes - 1.0% (0.9%)
Coyne: 473 votes - 1.0% (0.9%)
McCrimmon: 437 votes - 0.9% (0.8%)
Total: 48,983 votes (plus 419 blanks)

Ontario was a pretty easy wash for Trudeau, and looking over the riding numbers its clear where he excels: suburbia and immigrant-dominated ridings. His worst ridings - if you can call them that - were some of the more NDP-leaning areas, such as Ottawa Centre, Trinity-Spadina, and so on, where Murray did slightly better. There is also the issue of turnout that is somewhat interesting: the City of Toronto gave the race 11,262 voters in 23 ridings, while Eastern Ontario, where we hold only three seats in very specific areas, gave us 12,654 voters in 17 ridings. York and Durham regions, where we held ridings pre-2011 in great numbers, gave us only 5,433 voters! Its somewhat disheartening to see, though to good news is that Peel and Halton gave us lots and lots of support - go western GTA communities, woo!!

Trudeau: 9,502 votes - 81.1% (82.4%)
Cauchon: 812 votes - 6.9% (8.3%)
Murray: 770 votes - 6.6% (5.2%)
Hall Findlay: 518 votes - 4.4% (3.4%)
Coyne: 64 votes - 0.6% (0.4%)
McCrimmon: 52 votes - 0.4% (0.5%)
Total: 11,718 votes (plus 211 blanks)

Quebec's results must have been heartbreaking for Martin Cauchon, who just barely eeked out second place versus Murray, whose French isn't exactly... "good." Trudeau ran away with the vote in every riding, facing no serious opposition except in Cauchon's home riding of Montmorency-Charlevoix. There was also a very clear difference between the Montreal Region voters - who tended to vote more for Murray - and for the rest of Quebec - who voted more for Cauchon. Western Quebec also voted more for Murray, thanks to the powerhouse ridings in Gatineau.

Atlantic Region
Trudeau: 14,738 votes - 90.5% (89.4%)
Murray: 735 votes - 4.5% (5.0%)
Hall Findlay: 615 votes - 3.8% (3.8%)
Cauchon: 94 votes - 0.6% (0.6%)
McCrimmon: 50 votes - 0.3% (0.3%)
Coyne: 49 votes - 0.3% (0.3%)
Total: 16,281 votes (plus 377 blanks)

 Atlantic Canada went for Trudeau like no other province or region did, with Trudeau facing zero challenges in any of the 32 ridings. Not much to say beyond that.

So, overall, what can we make of this beyond the obvious? Trudeau was likely always going to win this race, as this kind of broad support is not just something you happen upon by accident. He built a movement from coast to coast, took out all challengers, and swamped almost every riding. There was likely no stopping it.

Yet, one has to take note of the results in Western Canada. While most of that was built on Joyce Murray's base in BC, the other Western provinces also featured less support for Trudeau as well. Why?

My main hypothesis is that Western Canadians who are in the Liberal Party were much more receptive to Joyce Murray's platform and ideas, versus what they saw coming from Justin and the other candidates. Part of this is the co-op issue, where in makes much more sense in the West where party loyalties on the progressive side of the spectrum are already relatively fluid. Jumping to the NDP, Greens, or even the Conservatives is easier for Westerners who, outside of some obvious exceptions, are not that loyal to political parties on a personal level.

The other part of it is Murray's positioning on the spectrum, as something of a centre-left candidate except with strong credentials in business and the environment, as well as being a former BC Liberal cabinet member. That probably has more appeal out West than it necessarily does here. And of course, we can't discount either the home-field advantage nor people who don't like the Trudeau name.

Trudeau lucked out by having his only rival being a barely known Westerner, who in my opinion ended up boxing in her own appeal by harping on the co-op issue so much. We'll never know how much appeal Garneau really had, though if he was sitting around 15-20% support as some people said, he could have been something of a threat.

That being said, I don't want to downplay Trudeau's win. He wasn't simply the "default" candidate, as this mega-landslide attests to. You simply don't get these kinds of numbers, on that kind of turnout, without building yourself a strong movement - then again, not even half of our Supporters registered, so maybe its a little more muddled than I make it out to be.

But, I still think its clear that Trudeau earned this win, hands down. He appealed to people of any background, income level, partisan history, ideology, or demographic in a well run campaign that should be a model for people in the future. He created a movement, one that I'm happily signing on to for 2015 and beyond, along with hundreds of thousands of others. We will win with Trudeau, so long as we stay united and strong behind his leadership.


  1. MHF ended up being a big disapointment. I was surprised to see how much better Murray did than her, though a lot of Murray's support seems to have been from advocacy groups rather than members or even people who plan on supporting the party.

    I didn't find her campaign to be that great, despite being run by a politician genius. I was expecting to see very strong numbers for MHF in Alberta, but she didn't even place second. She was even a distant second in her former riding of Willowdale. I can't see her having a future in the party anymore.

    1. I don't know about not having a future with the party - she very well could run again as an MP and rejoin the caucus. I never got the chance to ask her, sadly, but I do know that Coyne, Takach, and Cauchon are all seriously considering it, why not Hall Findlay?

      But, yeah, her campaign was a bit of a flop. I don't regret putting her as the first choice on my ballot, though.

  2. I think, possibly, part of the reason the West votes for Murray is that "moderate centrist" Western Canadians are Conservatives. If true, this is something we need to change.

  3. I think that is reality, not just a possibility; Western Conservatives have their extremist elements, but they vote in moderates like Wall, Redford, Lougheed, Bennett Jr, etc. These people should, for all intents and purposes, be Liberals. They aren't because the Liberal organization out West has collapsed entirely.

    1. Fixing this needs to be our focus. I hope our new leader realizes this and does not waste our resources in Quebec.