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What's the future for the NDP?

mjl08

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The NDP is in a sort of identity crisis. There seem to be two conflicting camps of onlookers:

1. The NDP is too centrist. They need to get back to their left-wing, big-ticket roots, and spend less time on consumer issues (reduce ATM fees!) and more on bold left wing issues like public dental care or nationalizing the banks.

2. The NDP is too left wing. They are too dogmatic, too idealistic, and too “in a hurry.” They need to embrace some degree of capitalism, like P3s, and tone back social-identity issues like gender or race.

The only opening I see for the NDP is a Wynne-like collapse that makes the NDP the default anti-Conservative vote. I think that is highly unlikely. While the Trudeau Liberals are bruised, they aren’t nearly as damaged or as tired as the Wynne Liberals.

Will the Greens overtake the NDP? Right now I’m not sure. Elizabeth May is definitely likable, and will be the most experienced leader in the debates. However, their post-partisan “not left, not right” mantra might fall onto deaf ears in an era of unprecedented political polarization. One can argue that cosmopolitan, business-friendly-yet-socially-conscious centrism has never been so unpopular in the face of global populism, on both the left and right.

Still, the NDP's prospects look poor in October. They are almost certain to lose seats out west and in the prairies and all but maybe one seat in Quebec. Their might be some possible areas for growth in Peel and in Toronto where they lost some seats by a nose in 2015. Their best bet would be a Liberal minority government where they hold the balance of power.
 
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kEiThZ

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Elections are won in the centre in Canada. The NDP has to accept that. They will never form government as long as first-past-the-post is what decides who has power. Their recent losses are because they've drifted from being pro-labour to becoming a very left-wing party. People think Jagmeet Singh is a problem. But he's more a symptom than the disease. Niki Ashton and the Leap Manifesto promoters are waiting in the shadows. And they're probably even less electable than Singh. But the NDP might have to learn that the hard way.
 

mjl08

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Elections are won in the centre in Canada. The NDP has to accept that. They will never form government as long as first-past-the-post is what decides who has power. Their recent losses are because they've drifted from being pro-labour to becoming a very left-wing party. People think Jagmeet Singh is a problem. But he's more a symptom than the disease. Niki Ashton and the Leap Manifesto promoters are waiting in the shadows. And they're probably even less electable than Singh. But the NDP might have to learn that the hard way.
However, isn't the common refrain that Mulcair moved too far to the centre in the NDP's disastrous 2015 election? Or that Horwath pivoted too far to the middle for the Ontario NDP in 2014?
 

Hopkins123

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The NDP is in a sort of identity crisis. There seem to be two conflicting camps of onlookers:

1. The NDP is too centrist. They need to get back to their left-wing, big-ticket roots, and spend less time on consumer issues (reduce ATM fees!) and more on bold left wing issues like public dental care or nationalizing the banks.

2. The NDP is too left wing. They are too dogmatic, too idealistic, and too “in a hurry.” They need to embrace some degree of capitalism, like P3s, and tone back social-identity issues like gender or race.

The only opening I see for the NDP is a Wynne-like collapse that makes the NDP the default anti-Conservative vote. I think that is highly unlikely. While the Trudeau Liberals are bruised, they aren’t nearly as damaged or as tired as the Wynne Liberals.

Will the Greens overtake the NDP? Right now I’m not sure. Elizabeth May is definitely likable, and will be the most experienced leader in the debates. However, their post-partisan “not left, not right” mantra might fall onto deaf ears in an era of unprecedented political polarization. One can argue that cosmopolitan, business-friendly-yet-socially-conscious centrism has never been so unpopular in the face of global populism, on both the left and right.

Still, the NDP's prospects look poor in October. They are almost certain to lose seats out west and in the prairies and all but maybe one seat in Quebec. Their might be some possible areas for growth in Peel and in Toronto where they lost some seats by a nose in 2015. Their best bet would be a Liberal minority government where they hold the balance of power.
The NDP's actually making some gains in Atlantic Canada at the expense of the Liberals. They're projected as of the latest polls to win 5 seats there (2 Halifax ridings, 2 St John's and Acadie-Bathurst in NB). This may offset some of the hemorrhaging they'll experience in the ROC.

Brampton should be interesting on election night as well. Projections show Brampton East (and neighboring Malton) as locks for the Liberals but the NDP, at least Provincially, holds a plurality of the seats so we'll see what happens.
 

adma

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The NDP's actually making some gains in Atlantic Canada at the expense of the Liberals. They're projected as of the latest polls to win 5 seats there (2 Halifax ridings, 2 St John's and Acadie-Bathurst in NB). This may offset some of the hemorrhaging they'll experience in the ROC.
Raw projections off 2015 figures, when circumstances in individual ridings were skewed by incumbency and other factors, are deceptive.
 

Hopkins123

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adma

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I'm not sure of what the methodology is that they're using, but MacLean's seems to think 338canada.com is pretty spot on with its projections as of May 5, 2019:

https://www.macleans.ca/politics/ot...-has-the-tories-safely-in-majority-territory/
http://338canada.com/map.htm
Look: *anybody* can do raw projections off 2015 figures. But projections are no substitute for actual polling; they're useful for giving a general sweeping impression, but they can also be a crutch for the statistically stupid just as talking GPS can be a crutch for the geographically stupid...
 

WislaHD

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However, isn't the common refrain that Mulcair moved too far to the centre in the NDP's disastrous 2015 election? Or that Horwath pivoted too far to the middle for the Ontario NDP in 2014?
As someone in the centre, this is kind of an annoying interpretation of the 2015 election.

There was a point in the election where the NDP were leading the polls, and people like myself even considered Mulcair as a viable leader to place my vote for. They just surged too soon and in the summer when people are at the cottage, and come September when the polls shifted towards the Liberals as the "anyone-but-conservative" vote in the weeks prior to the election, the NDP lead collapsed.

This is common phenomenon in election cycles, especially one so long as the 2015 election was. That is why many political operators with a conservative slant are also looking with concern about the Conservatives recent upwards swing in the polls due to SNC Lavalin and various Liberal scandals, as it is too early in the year to take advantage of that momentum ahead of the fall election.

Back to 2015, I would not have interpreted the electoral result as a referendum on Mulcair's leadership of the NDP, but that was certainly the way many NDPers interpreted the "disastrous result". Perhaps this was because the left-wing of the NDP disliked Mulcair so greatly and wanted someone from their own faction to be leader. It is a shame, since the move towards moderate centrism under Mulcair actually made the NDP electable to many Canadians, myself included. The pivot back to the left-wing of the party has only assured that I can no longer consider voting for the NDP as a viable alternative to the Liberals. (Granted, I am not part of the NDP voter base, so my opinion means little here.)
 

BurlOak

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Back to 2015, I would not have interpreted the electoral result as a referendum on Mulcair's leadership of the NDP, but that was certainly the way many NDPers interpreted the "disastrous result". Perhaps this was because the left-wing of the NDP disliked Mulcair so greatly and wanted someone from their own faction to be leader. It is a shame, since the move towards moderate centrism under Mulcair actually made the NDP electable to many Canadians, myself included. The pivot back to the left-wing of the party has only assured that I can no longer consider voting for the NDP as a viable alternative to the Liberals. (Granted, I am not part of the NDP voter base, so my opinion means little here.)
Mulcair was electable. It became apparent that his entire party was still way too far left to be trusted by the electorate.
 

Hopkins123

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Given the NDP's polling out in the Prairies, he may have dodged a disappointing October.
True. Saskatchewan is shaping up to be the surest bet Province to go entirely Conservative in the next election. Everything west of Kenora to east of Vancouver, sans Winnipeg, looks like a blue wave.
 

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