Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Separatists Hit Panique Button

Easter weekend has not been kind to Gilles Duceppe and the Bloc Quebecois as poll after poll describe the fortunes of the party in a precipitous decline, now trailing the Ndp in popularity, something none of the experts dared predict before the election.

This last weekend has been particularly unnerving to those in the sovereignist movement and since the news dropped that two out of the three major polling firms have placed the Ndp ahead of the Bloc Quebecois, confusion and panic has set in.
Although Duceppe has started to attack Layton, the NDP leader appears to have a latex exterior and so far the political attacks have bounced harmlessly off the dapper politician. Let's be honest, it's hard to demonize Jack Layton.
The Conservatives have taken a much more subtle approach, likening Layton to an affectionate old uncle, loved and appreciated but not to be trusted with the family wallet.

One of the most sacrosanct beliefs held by expert Quebec-watchers is that support for sovereignty and independence has a bedrock base of about 30%.
It has become an accepted fact that this 30% will remain militant sovereignists come hell or high water and will always vote for the sovereignist option, just as it is accepted that about 45% of Quebeckers will always vote for the federalist option, again, no matter what.

Commodity traders describe a 'resistance line', or a 'trading range' to refer to a product like pork bellies or frozen orange juice's traditional price range.

When the product 'breaks out' either above or below this range, it becomes a wildly unpredictable affair and the so-called 'experts' throw up their hands and watch the unfolding scenario, unable to realistically predict the final outcome.
If recent polls are to be believed, support for the Bloc Quebecois has fallen below the critical 30% level, with the EKOS poll and IPSOS-REID poll both putting the Bloc support at 27%. In fairness, a third poll done by NANOS pegs the Bloc support at 32%. LINK

That being said, what is noteworthy, is that all three polls have support for the Bloc falling in this last week of the campaign and if the trend continues, no one can predict with any certainty what the actual results will be in terms of who will be elected..

It is important to note that about 70% of Bloc voters (or former Bloc voters) indicate that the Ndp is their second choice and with the Liberals floundering in Quebec rather helplessly, it's also hard to see a Bloc voter going anywhere else but the Ndp, the Conservatives certainly not an option.

So why the change of heart?
Anyone who claims they have the answer is Monday morning quarterback.

No doubt there is a bandwagon effect going on, similar to the one a couple of years ago that saw the ADQ make a giant provincial election breakthrough, also at the separatist's expense.
But since then, things have fallen back to normal with the Pq and the Liberals holding the majority of support and seats provincially.

It's fair to ask if this infatuation with Jack Layton and the Ndp is a one-off thing.

But for the moment, there's no doubt that about one-third of historical Bloc voters are looking for something else. It seems that Jack Layton has struck a cord and for many of the disillusioned, a vote for the Ndp is a well-placed and acceptable protest vote.

For the sovereignists, desperation has set in.
Yesterday morning the Bloc had brought back out of retirement, a frail yet hearty Jacques Parizeau to hit the campaign trail to inspire the troops with warnings of impending doom and gloom.

If they could, separatists would dig up the corpse of Rene Levesque, slap on a new suit and a little makeup and get Andre Philippe Gagnon to mouth his voice in a couple of well-placed TV commercials.

That's how desperate things are..

Whether the trend will hold until election day is the $64,000 question and if it does, what exactly the effect on the actual election will be is an open question. The new Ndp support is so diffused that whether it can make a difference in more than a few ridings is questionable.
It will however, help secure the fortunes of Quebec Tory incumbents who were thought to be in danger due to the arena fiasco. It will undoubtedly, help Conservative independent MP, Andre Arthur save his seat as well as Justin Trudeau.

As for the rest, there aren't more than a half dozen close races and whether the Ndp surge can take more than a projected two seats in Quebec, remains to be seen.

Interestingly, the big Ndp bump seems to be an exclusively Francophone affair and although no hard statistics are available, I don't think Jack Layton's new found strength translates into the English community. If it did, it would be good news for at least two Conservative candidates, Larry Smith and Saulie Zajdel, both who need some help to overcome traditional Liberal support to have any hope of winning.

At the end of the day, whether the Bloc returns to Ottawa with thirty seats or fifty seats is of little consequence if Harper gets his majority government.
That remains the overriding concern for Quebec nationalists who rightfully consider this the overriding matter at hand.


I'm off to the Canadiens game tonight with my son and so I hope readers will wish us LUCK!!!!
To the Vancouver Canucks and their fans, I hope all works out for you guys later tonight!

KEEP THE FAITH!!!!!!!!!!


  1. Ex Quebecer Jack Layton:

    "From time to time he has been criticized for saying one thing and doing another, including being caught red-handed in 1985 living in subsidized housing in Toronto when his and Olivia Chow, then a Toronto trustee, were raking in a combined $120,000 year.

    “Jack once told me many years after that incident that it is the one thing he has never able to purge or expunge from the public’s mind, this apparent contradiction,” said former seatmate Brian Ashton.

    That's our Jack - always thinking of the underdog. If you believe that, then I have some great swamp land for sale in Kebec, get a hold of me, its really cheap, a bargain…

    So the NDP are doing better in Kebec (original native spelling) the media says…blah, blah, blah, who gives a shit? This is just more spin from the brain dead main stream media. Lets take a real close look at what these clowns from the NDP really stand for. They support the racist, anti-English language laws of Kebec, yes they support bill 101, nice eh? So this party is no different then all the other political parties in Kebec that support racism, bigotry, intolerance and outright hatred for anything not metis/french. This is what the media is not talking about as usual. The truth, the facts would be nice for a change.Lets expose these clowns for what they really are, tax and spend, phony scum bag hypocrites…

  2. Please show that photo again of Layton and Mulcair marching with the seppies...

    I can't seem to find it.

    Thank you.

  3. To Anon@9:22AM
    Here is the link


  4. Voila:


    3rd and 5th photo.

    Mario Beaulieu is also there in the front row, and right next to Beaulieu is "our" mayor, Mr.Tremblay. (the 4th photo)

  5. Looks like the NDP's fortunes have turned in Quebec (but not the ROC) at the expense of Duceppe and the seppies. Well, I think this is just another case of the people in Quebec voting strategically to protect their own asses. If, Harper attains a majority he will no doubt be very tough on Duceppe (cut off taxpayer funding) and it is quite likely that allying with a National Party (NDP) would soften the hammer.

    I think this is more likely why Layton's fortunes seem to be changing.

    Interesting, however, that the NDP new found surge may be the best thing for the Tories. Split the center left vote and that leaves room for the Conservative cantidate in a three way race. This is likely more true for Toronto and the GTA rather than in Quebec, where the liberals and conservatives don't seem to be an option.

    This could be the end of the BQ as we now know it. If the Cons get a majority the taxpayer funding if the BQ will be phased out over three years. The BQ received less funding from within Quebec than the Green Party in the last election which speaks volumes about the commitment of the people of Quebec to the separatist party of Duceppe.

    The political sign regarding Harper in the previous post (elect me and I will f**k Quebec) is likely on base more than one would think in the ROC. There is a distaste for the pandering and special treatments to Quebec by the feds and many in the ROC would be full of Glee, to see and end to these program and a tougher treatment of Quebec.

  6. @ Anon 9:22 AM

    "Kebec (original native spelling)"

    Funny, I wasn't aware that Algonquins in the 16th century knew how to spell in roman letters. There sure are some quality contributors here...

  7. I agree with the last comment. J'ai toujours pensé qu'il n'y avait pas de langue écrite chez les peuples autochtones ? Faut croire qu'il y en a un qui nous démontre son ignorance. Le mot Québec est bien d'origine algonquienne par contre le K de Kébec était une façon d'écrire le mot pour les français car à l'oral, ça faisait bien Kébec.

  8. For shit and giggles, check vigile.net out. The posters are trying to refute the polls (strange, since separatists love statistics) and to bash Jack Layton and the NDP.

    On another note, go Habs go! Game 7 in Boston tomorrow.

  9. If the NDP becomes as fortified as the polls are showing next Monday, and Layton is stupid enough to open that can of worms called trying to get Quebec to sign onto the Constitution, the federal party concept of proclaiming English as the official language of the Canadian majority is on, and I have a manifesto in place to promulgate the beginnings of a party geared to English speakers first, including, as Robert Libman wrote in his previous Gazette article, the Anglo "orphans" in Quebec.

    An objective of the proposed party would be to run in all constituencies outside Quebec, and in predominantly minority ridings within Quebec. Placing candidates in constituencies with a history of separatist representation, or even federalist ridings with minimal Anglophone /Allophone representation would be redundant and a colossal waste of time and resources.

    I almost hope Harper would win with a majority in order to stick it to Quebec for their lack of support, but another minority government appears to be in the cards. Back to the polls in two years. Shades of Israel and Italy and their chronic problem of endless minority rule.