Election Thoughts

So this election’s over, and we won’t have another federal election until, oh, I don’t know, next spring. So let’s review, shall we?

  1. As proven in both 2000 elections (US & Canada) and this one, polls lie. As one person put it to Rex Murphy, respondents like to lie to pollsters: for practice, for kicks, for bizarre perversions. The polls were so wrong.
  2. The Liberals got the minority government I’d been both expecting & hoping for. The spectre of 1-for-1 conjoining of the Alliance & the PCs didn’t happen
  3. The NDP, sadly, do not hold the balance of power. I was pretty excited for a while, when the CBC had them leading in 28 ridings. I was really hopeful for them. Still, good showing under their rookie leader. I hope Layton & co works their tails off for the next few months, and get experience on the floor, because we’re going to be doing this all over again soon.
  4. In many ways, perhaps it would have been better for the Conservatives to win this minority. Why? Because minority governments are unstable and tend not to last long. And I wouldn’t be surprised if the government gets blamed for that (as well as, most likely, whichever party holds balance of power), and will thus be soundly trounced in the following election, as we Canadians love to punish with our vote, not reward. No empirical data to back this up, other than the 1979 Joe Clark minority gov’t. But it seems like something we voters would do.
  5. What could be quite fun is that here in BC, we could be having a provincial election (May 2005) at the same time as the Federal election. Which could have ramifications in either. Firstly, anger at the Federal Liberals could lead to not voting for the provincial Liberals (despite the fact that the provincial Liberals are really more like Federal Conservatives), and conversely (as we essentially have a 2-party system here), voting for provincial NDP could lead to voting for Federal NDP (I doubt this, but would be nice. I’m so biased!).
  6. Live, nation-wide result-watching is so much fun! I think it would be fun to get a whole group of people together next time, and make some sort of betting/drinking game out of it.