November 10, 2009 by Joseph Krohn
On Monday four by-elections were held in Canada. The Liberals had a modest goal of coming in second or increasing their share of the votes in each riding – but failed even at that. The Block won one seat in Montreal and the NDP retained their New Westminster-Coquitlam, BC riding.
The Two New Conservatives:
Bernard Généreux, the former mayor of La Pocatière, scored an upset in Montmagny-L’Islet-Kamouraska-Rivière du loup in eastern Quebec, taking more than 42 per cent of the vote, ahead of the Bloc’s Nancy Gagnon, with just under 38 per cent.
Scott Armstrong reclaimed the riding of Cumberland-Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley in Nova Scotia, a longtime Tory stronghold. He won almost 46 per cent of the vote. His nearest rival, NDP candidate Mark Austin, took nearly 26 per cent, followed by Liberal Jim Burrows at just over 21 per cent.
Current Standings in the House of Commons
Conservatives – 145 (up by two)
Liberals – 77 (unchanged)
Block – 48 (up by one)
NDP – 37 (up by one)
One can only wonder if this is a prediction of the next federal election (sometime in 2010).
The NDP are declaring the Liberals to be dead – and already counting on claiming a number of their seats – and also claiming to becoming the new alternative in Quebec (because they came second in the Montreal by-election).
The Liberals are declaring that they never held any of these seats in 50 years (but forgot when they held all four during Chretian’s tenure).
The Block, well they simply declare that by-elections don’t mean anything.
The Conservatives – maybe a majority is in store for them. This win in Nova Scotia is a big step toward the Atlantic provinces going blue again. Their win in Quebec make them the Federalist alternative in that province, which is beginning to come out of their separatist view.
Only the next federal election will show for sure what the results will be.