Dead Grits – Part Four

In my ongoing series about the decline of the Liberal Party in Saskatchewan, I will be looking at the performance of the federal Liberal party in Saskatchewan during the 2011 federal election. See my previous posts on this topics: Part One, Part Two, Part Three.

Basically, I’m interested in the province-wide aggregate Liberal results, as well as the riding-by-riding performance, looking for changes over the previous election. And potentially how that compares to the national results on eleciton day.

Here’s where the Liberals came out in 2008:

Battlefords-Lloydminster 8.23%
Blackstrap 14.33%
Cypress Hills 13.26%
Desnethe-Missinippi-Churchhill River 30.28%
Palliser 17.05%
Prince Albert 7.84%
Regina-Lumsden-Lake Centre 14.86%
Regina-Qu’Appelle 10.45%
Saskatoon-Humboldt 11.96%
Saskatoon-Rosetown-Biggar 4.44%
Saskatoon-Wanuskewin 12.42%
Souris-Moose Mountain 6.70%
Wascana 46.07%
Yorkton-Melville 5.41%

There are several ridings where I expect the Liberals to improve their performance, such as Saskatoon-Humboldt where they are running a higher-profile candidate in Darren Hill (although the presence of Jim Pankiw’s candidacy in that riding shakes things up a bit from last time). Repeat candidates, like Patricia Zipchen in Saskatoon-Wanuskewin, can also improve their showing over 2008. Other ridings, I expect to see a decline. Of particular interest will be the northern riding of Desnethe-Missinippi-Churchill River, where the Liberals have a fairly good electoral track record. But they are onto yet another candidate in that riding (I’m not sure where David Orchard, the 2008 candidate, went to).

Over at threehundredeight.com, Eric’s model is currently (as of April 12) predicting a higher return for the Liberals in every riding. And as much as I enjoy Eric’s model, this seems like a rather mechanistic and simplified distribution of Liberal support in Saskatchewan.

Unfortunately, I’m not a statistician and I don’t think I can mount much more than an enlightened guess into the possible outcomes in each of these ridings. But I’ll take a shot at it, just to see how my gut compares to reality.

In the meantime, polls coming out on the eve of Good Friday promises anything but for the Liberals tomorrow: apparently, the NDP is surging so powerfully in Quebec, that the sheer hydraulic power is floating their brand boat nationally too, with two polls placing the NDP in second-place nationally (that’s above the Liberals).

In Saskatchewan, this shouldn’t have much of an impact, as they were already well ahead of the Liberals here. Nevertheless, a further collapse of the Liberal vote could make a difference in a few ridings; but it is hard to imagine it making a difference in Saskatoon-Rosetown-Biggar, where last round the Liberal candidate could only muster 4.4% of the vote there. It is hard to imagine a lower number in 2011.

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