Tuesday, September 9, 2008

British Columbia Southern Interior

Currently held by Alex Atamanenko of the NDP. He ran in 2004 and 2006. In 2004 he came close to unseating Jim Gouk. Jim severed as a Reform/CA/Conservative MP from 1993 until he retired in 2006.

No one in the national NDP gave Alex any chance of even coming close to winning in 2004 and he only had $22 000 to spend. In 2004 he barely spent more than the Greens.

In 2006 the Conservative nominee ran into problems and was dropped by the party making it very easy for Alex to become elected as MP.

The West Kootenay area has been fertile federal ground for the NDP. From 1949 to 1974 the CCF and then the NDP held the riding. From 1974 to 1988 the area bounced back and forth between the NDP and PCs. The margin was normally less than 2000 votes.

Assuming the NDP vote does not collapse, Alex has to be assumed the most likely winner in the election.

In 1993 this area was picked up by the Reform Party. For a number to elections the NDP were not a serious factor in the region. The Conservatives should be able to recover from the problems from 2006, though will Rob Zandee be able to win? I do not think he can pull it off this time.

BC Southern Interior is one the better Green votes in the country. In 1997 and 2000 Kootenay Boundary Okanagan had the highest percent of Green votes in Canada. In 2004 BC Southern Interior was their 4th best result and in 2006 their 6th best result.

If Andy Morel of the Greens works hard, he should be able to pull his party in third place. But the argument will be that people need to vote NDP otherwise the Conservatives will win. IF the greens are going to win a seat, this has to be one of the ones they put their resources into. If they do not make a first rate effort in a riding that has been one of their top areas in the country then the party may as well close up shop.

The Liberals are a non issue in the riding. Their best result came in the 2000 election in Kootenay Boundary Okanagan when former NDP cabinet minister Bill Barlee ran as a Liberal. He pushed the party vote to just over 27%. As far as I can tell there is no Liberal nominated yet. I can see the carbon tax being a big lead ballon here.

Also running is Mark Cochrane of the Canadian Action Party.

No comments: