NDP Policies Give Liberals New Hope

Finally, the Liberals have latched onto something.  After weeks of useless targeting of what they say the NDP DID in the 90s … and no gains in the polls … the Liberals have shifted gears … targeting what they say an NDP government WOULD do in 2013-2017 … and it’s working.

The NDP is the party of “NO” say the new Liberal ads … exploiting  NDP positions on several projects: “NO” to Kinder Morgan; “NO” to Enbridge: “NO” to coastal tanker traffic; “NO” to expanded West coast coal exports; “NO” to the Prosperity gold copper mine in the Cariboo: “NO” to BC Hydro’s Site “C” dam; “NO” to Jumbo Glacier Resort; and possibly “NO’ to fracking.

The Liberals are the party of “YES,  their new ads say: “YES” to development: “YES” to jobs; “YES” to lower taxes etc.  … all aimed at exactly the voters I pointed to recently as the only ones who really count: the undecided.

And THOSE voters …especially the younger ones just out of school or new to the workforce …  are worried about all those “NO”s and where their jobs are going to come from.  A hundred thousand jobs over the next four years.

Clearly Adrian Dix and the NDP have NOT done a good job of outlining the answer to that pressing question.  According to the latest Ipsos-Reid (widely respected and trusted)  poll the Liberals, with 35 per cent voter support,  have started to close the gap on the NDP, still leading with 45 per cent.

And based on previous election campaigns, the gap will likely narrow in the last week … especially, I believe, if the Libs keep hitting at the NDP as the party of “NO”.

Reminds me of the 1975 election, when Bill Bennett was running well behind NDP incumbent Dave Barrett and then, two weeks before voting day, Barrett said that was not the time for “restraint” in spending the  public’s money. Bennett took that and ran with it, saying it ALWAYS  the time to show restraint in spending public money. Bennett won.

I personally believe the NDP will still win the May 14 vote.  The Liberals have soured too many former supporters and uncommitted.

But, with so many undecided,  and the campaigning expected to get even more intense this coming week, you never know.

And wouldn’t it be ironic if the NDP was done in by excessive catering to its more militant supporters,  instead of middle-of-the-road UNDECIDED voters.

Harv Oberfeld

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27 Responses to NDP Policies Give Liberals New Hope

  1. Larry Bennett says:

    I haven’t checked some of the local political blogs yet, but I think some of the more raucous prognosticators will be a bit sheepish seeing the fast changing polls. I will admit that the Liberals have made some startling advancements in important areas. My phone has been going crazy, mostly with local (Burnaby) NDP calling to find out how I am going to vote. I think they are in panic mode, though I doubt there will be any great changes in Corrigan’s burg.
    Ain’t elections exciting? Mostly because they are so unpredictable.

  2. G. Barry Stewart says:

    Harvey, can you give us a link to the YES ads? I haven’t seen them yet.

    I wasn’t aware that Christy had said yes to anything specific. The waffling on the fracking review yesterday was humourous, with the candidate saying he wouldn’t want a review that would cause the industry to change anything they were doing.

    Ridiculous. Sort of like the Gerrand review of Christy’s conflict of interest in the BC Rail sale.

    (Response: Heard it on the radio: featured Christy speaking (sounded like a rally) saying the NDP is the party of No and Libs are the party of Yes. And she seemed to push the idea at her Ashcroft speech: http://www.vancouversun.com/business/Clark+tells+Interior+communities+will+kill+schools+roads/8330061/story.html h.o)

  3. Gumby says:

    Oh Harvey, you are following the media bread crumbs again, how about keeping it real
    Ipsos Reid has a new poll tonight,
    NDP lead on Vancouver island 48% to 28%
    NDP lead in Metro Vancouver..47% to 39%
    NDP lead in the interior 41% to 32%
    NDP, according to Kyle Braid STILL HAVE a 20% percentage point lead with female voters.

    Harvey, a 20% percentage point lead among female voters this late in the campaign is the final death knell.
    That`s not me saying that, that was Kyle Braid of Ipsos Reid.
    Forget the BC Harvey, no party can win an election with that disparity in the gender vote.
    Even if you check the Angus Reid poll, the detailed tables show nothing was moving but a strange anonymity in the interior!
    You might want to rethink this post.

    (Response: Well, if you won’t believe me (do you think I just make up poll figures?) maybe you’ll believe The Tyee: “A week full of election polls has ended with a survey from Ipsos Reid that indicates the NDP holding a 10-point lead. Earlier this week, various pollsters gave the NDP leads ranging between 22 percentage points and four points. The Ipsos poll, conducted online for Global BC, indicates the NDP’s lead has been cut in half since the last Ipsos poll, taken March 8-12, which put the New Democrats out ahead by 19 points.” What you have done, quite skillfully, is what propagandists always do …ignore the overall findings and quote only a few areas that voted they way you favour. The overall total …which has been the way EVERY poll has been reported (until the one you disagree with 🙂 DOES have the province-wide gap narrower. As I said, I still believe the NDP will win …but the new Liberal ads/approach is making a difference. h.o)

  4. Larry Bennett says:

    Gumby – Perhaps it is just that today’s young male voter wants to show his female side, to get his girlfriend’s approval. You know the floppy toque, the little oriental slippers w/o any heel, the short cuffed pants, without socks, and the little scarf piled around their shoulders? Sometimes they wear those little hats with animal features, eyes, nose and ears etc.. and the most macho of them will wear winkle-pickers, open collar, no tie, usually in monochromatic accessories but will occasionally wear pink or mauve shirts. Oh, and they will act socially concerned, even to the point of voting Green or NDP.

  5. SB says:

    yes to more bcrail deals yes to more poor policies on run of river ipps yes to more child poverty yes to less court and social resources -liberal mantra money to the rich everyone else pays no thanks.

    (Response: That’s so negative…introducing FACTS into a campaign! 🙂 h.o.

  6. Scotty on Denman says:

    Christy had better watch out about crowing “Yes” to pipelines, tankers, fracking, LNG, mines and coal port expansion in her usual over the top fashion. So far it’s only bitumen tankers the NDP have come out against and Christy will once again have her honesty and/or her competence questioned once again once her rivals take her to task. The girl don’t learn though; you could see a bunch of sudden Green cold feet if an NDP win starts looking iffy.

    (Response: I still don’t believe, after May 14, Christy will have to worry much about promises made before May 14. But you know, in campaigning, creating doubt and even fear about what your opponents would do is often highly effective. h.o)

  7. G. Barry Stewart says:

    Are these polls always run on phones? If so — with cell phone numbers being kept so private — wouldn’t that skew the data? Very few young people have land line phones.

  8. G. Barry Stewart says:

    Ah, from the source: “From May 1 to May 2, 2013, Angus Reid Public Opinion conducted an online survey among 808 randomly selected British Columbia adults who are Angus Reid Forum panellists. The margin of error—which measures sampling variability—is +/- 3.5%, 19 times out of 20. The results have been statistically weighted according to the most current education, age, gender and region Census data to ensure a sample representative of the entire adult population of British Columbia. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding.”

    I wonder if the Christy Party has infiltrated the Angus Reid panel? That would certainly skew the numbers… an would be very much their M-O.


    (Response: Angus Reid and Ipsos Reid are among the most credible polling firms I know. There are BIG bucks in doing accurate polling: the big firms would be nuts to destroy their own financial trustworthiness and corporate viability by selling out to one side in any poll, let alone a BC provincial one, which … in the overall scheme of HUNDREDS of political and business polling they do across the country each year …is actually pretty puny potatoes. h.o)

  9. Chrissandra says:

    Harvey, it wasn’t the 1975 election. It was the 1983 election.

    (Response: Could be right: I remember covering Bennett at the timer: he had been almost morose on the campaign trail, down in the polls, …until Barrett made his statement, and all of a sudden, Bennett was a new campaigner, full of enthusiasm and a “new” message. And he won. h.o)

  10. workforfun says:

    But you know, in campaigning, creating doubt and even fear about what your opponents would do is often highly effective. h.o)

    Well, it sure worked for the Conservative government under Stephen Harper !


  11. D. M. Johnston says:

    The NDP just don’t get it, they never do as they are the party of righteousness. Everything they do is a signal from the almighty that they are the chosen ones.

    The problem with Dix, as I have mentioned before and you allude to, is held hostage to a party made up of militant factions. The militant factions support the NDP as a whole because there is a party promise to make their wishes come true.

    I haven’t seen anything in Dix’s campaign that would make me vote for him – he is not for anything. More and more Dix is looking like Harcourt in drag, a fence sitter who bends where the poll wind blows. The electorate just do not see Dix in a positive light and the NDP and their ossified hierarchy have only to blame themselves.

    Here are 5 problems that Dix should address.

    1) Honesty in government, new and harsh laws are needed to keep MLA’s honest.
    2) TransLink, needs to have elected members running it, not regional mayors who know little or nothing about regional transportation. Translink’ doesn’t need more money, it needs credible management.
    3) Education, must be completely revamped to deal with students needs, not teacher’s needs. Today’s eduction is nothing more than a joke and the kids know it.
    4) The problems with the courts must be addressed. Today, the justice system is held in high odor by far too many people.
    5) Civic and provincial bureaucracies are grossly overstaffed with incompetent people. the”bureaucracy” has become a dumping ground for far too many university graduates that are so incompetent, they can’t get a job in the real world.

    Senior bureaucrats are paid far too much money for what they are worth.

    Premier photo-op leads one of the most hated and evil governments this province has ever seen; a political party that has greatly enriched their supporters with lower taxes and flim-flam policies, designed to make the poor pay for the rich. And Dix is losing ground to this!

    Luckily I have a viable alternative, a credible independent to vote or, because Dix’s NDP leave cold and I want to see all Liberal MLA’s end up in gaol!

    I still think Dix will win, but his government will not have as large majority, that he would and maybe that is a good thing.

    (Response: I think he has to talk more about where the large numbers of jobs BC needs will come from under an NDP government. No point in skills training unless there are jobs HERE where they can be used: instead of training people here …to go work in Alberta, Ontario or even the U.S. h.o)

  12. Persey says:


    In your response to Gumby, I think you have given the answer for the sudden turnaround in the poll numbers.

    You said, “The Ipsos poll, conducted online for Global BC, “.

    My confidence in Global’s objectivity has been seriously eroded of late, and

    When you note that it is an online poll, the first thing to come to mind is the recent increase in activity of Young Liberal trolls on the internet.

    If it walks like a duck…….

    (Response: Well, it wasn’t Global that conducted the poll: they HIRED Ipsos Reid and although the company paying for the poll can ask for certain questions to be asked, but election polling questions are quite straight up. See also my comments to G.B.S. h.o.)

  13. RS says:

    I agree with SB. Dix and the NDP should be making hay of the “Yes to (fill in the many blanks)”

    Is it negative to state facts? I think not.

    As much as Christy wants to “grow the economy” Dix needs to grow — well — you know.

  14. Hugh says:

    I think a good proportion of voters understand that those projects you list above are bad projects.

    Site C for example, a public cost of $8 billion. Not really needed. Destroys agricultural land.

    (Response: You could be right, but something has happened…and it sure wasn’t a stellar performance by Clark in the debate. I’m not so sure than many of the undecided aren’t beginning to worry about where all the jobs are going to come from: Dix MUST say more about that to persuade them. h.o)

  15. Ed Seedhouse says:

    I think you are largely right Harv, which may come as a surprise since as you know I am an N.D.P. insider (of a very minor sort) and working for them in this election. But I think you have perhaps underestimated a salient fact, namely that the Liberals seem to me, at this point, to be heavily out buying the N.D.P. in both radio and T.V. adds.

    Whatever I think about the Liberals, they do know how to craft an add that hits people’s buttons and right now the add war seems extremely one sided. I hear and see Liberal adds all the time, but hardly ever an N.D.P. add either on radio or T.V.

    I think that if the N.D.P. can do some heavy add spending in the last week or so, and if they are well crafted they can claw back a fair bit of that lost ground.

    I also think that the latest polls show them pretty well at their base level and it’s pretty hard to see how they can go lower. It’s also hard to see where more growth for the Liberals is going to come from.

    Robin Matthews has what I think is a pretty clear headed analysis which you might find interesting here: http://powellriverpersuader.blogspot.ca/2013/05/christy-clark-liberals-out-of-gas.html

    Which supports your feeling that the N.D.P. will still win.

    I know that Party brass have been warning us working activists for at least a month that the polls going into the election were unrealistic and that the race would tighten up quite a bit before election day.

    There doesn’t seem to be any evidence that those running the campaign are in panic mode yet. I am not privy to the planning at the upper echelons, but Brian Topp seems to be a fairly smart cookie and he’s running the campaign.

    As always, time will tell.

    (Response: The Libs may have more dough, but I don’t think their early ads were at all successful. Only impressed those already anti-NDP. As I mentioned, I found the Lib YES/NO message very effective, but haven’t heard it again today, so now I’m wondering whether it was a news item, with clips from a speech or an actual ad. Also saw an article on the NDP being “NO”-sayers in The Sun, so something is up. We’ll have to see if it is recurring theme. h.o)

  16. Don Morris says:

    I am not a supporter of either the “yes”, “no”, or “maybe” Party,so will seek a good Independent candidate.

    Christy has nice teeth and a great figure,and her rah-rah cheerleader mode drives me up a wall. Dix seems to not have a clue about how this,or any other economy actually works.

    In the recent debates, Jane Sterk was so embarrassing in her grade-six school-girl naivety,I had to cringe every time she spoke.

    Many of the good jobs have gone offshore,never to return,so we in B.C. are stuck back where we started 150 years ago, extracting resources,the only difference now is that we can extract oil and gas as well as timber.

    Dix,and all politicians MUST realize that there IS no other viable alternative to resource extraction for BC to sell,the”green jobs” and IT jobs are for the most part,fantasy and wishful thinking. For every IT tech in Canada,there are five thousand in Asia, all willing to work for a tenth of what we have to pay.

    Dix seems to be anti-pipelines, tankers, fracking, and the NDP has taken so many huge areas of the Province out of bounds for forestry or mining, you have to ask, “where’s the money going to come from Adrian”?

    I don’t think he has a clue.

    (Response: I think most British Columbians are centre of the road on all this, as I am: NO to metro Vancouver pipelines/oil tanker expansion; but yes to other resource development as long as every state of the art measure is taken to make it safe, provide BC jobs, and lots of BC revenues. We ARE a resource province, after all. h.o)

  17. motorcycleguy says:

    RS says “Dix needs to grow-well-you know”. You bet, I just don’t think there is strong enough hormone therapy out there to do it in such a short period of time….but…he has some very strong members of his team that already possess the attributes (whether we speak of male or female equivalents of such attributes) people who want to save our province are looking for. Whether they be centre or either side of centre (as much as I don’t like using those terms). Clark does not have a team behind her, Dix does….and a good one….one person cannot run the province on their own and the people know it. Get the future ministers out there speaking. Actually goes for all parties. Give us a sample of their “attributes”. People in general have no idea there is anyone else but the “leader” of any of the parties.

  18. david hadaway says:

    I’m looking forward to Christy’s new campaign song;

    I’m jist a gal who cain’t say no,
    I’m in a terrible fix
    I always say ‘come on, le’s go’
    Just when I orta say ‘Dix’.

  19. e.a.f. says:

    Perhaps the NDP should start running another version of YES/NO for the lieberals.
    YES, for more child poverty;
    YES, to shadow tolls;
    YES, to high interest rates for B.C. Ferries;
    YES, for mortgaging the future of B.C. Hydro and B.C. to IPPs. Then
    NO to more schools in Surrey;
    NO, to improved care for seniors and the mentally ill;
    NO to a hospice for the dying in your local community.

    The question is Christie Clark’s judgement and just as she said YES to running a red light, we need to say NO, to her running our province in the same irresonsible manner.

    (Response: Well put… the NP should hire you! Dix was out there again today, at Kits Beach, saying NO to pipelines/harbour traffic. I AGREE with him …BUT when it comes to winning an election, it’s not those already on side he should be going after, it’s those who need to hear more of what the NDP WOULD DO, not just NOT DO. h.o)

  20. Larry Bennett says:

    Hugh – What say we just drain all the lakes in B.C. and then we’d have all this farm land. Of course we’d need to have gas fueled laptops? Actually the land you’re speaking of is mostly good for grain crops, and we have about 3 thousand miles of Great Plains that is under utilized. Course, we’d probably have to dam up some of the rivers in the plains to irrigate them. Actually, I think that the residents of the Peace Block (South and North) often wonder why they don’t have the lowest hydro rates in the world, but it is mostly sold to California or goes to the Lower Mainland so they would get cheap hydro, yet those same people would deny some of the richest oil and gas profits and jobs to those same folks.

  21. Larry Bennett says:

    David – Talk about “arcane history”! I mean, I liked and still like Oklahoma (had to sing it to spell it) but most of these nimrods haven’t a clue!

  22. RS says:

    The NDP just don’t get it, they never do as they are the party of righteousness. Everything they do is a signal from the almighty that they are the chosen ones.

    Geez D.M.J. Are you seem to be confusing the NDP with the Conservatives.

  23. crh says:

    The NDP just don’t get it, they never do as they are the party of righteousness. Everything they do is a signal from the almighty that they are the chosen ones.

    Geez D.M.J. Are you seem to be confusing the NDP with the Conservatives…..

    Actually it is the Greens that are now the party of the angels. They can say and o whatever they want and never have to cost it out in any way. They are the youngest child.

  24. Crankypants says:

    I am astounded how the MSM, political pundits, pollsters and bloggers, such as yourself, draw the conclusions that you all do.

    Take negative advertising for example. I have heard over and over again that negative advertising works. Where is the proof? Did anyone ask voters in any election if they voted for a particular party or candidate because they utilized a series of negative ads against their opponents?

    In an article on the Tyee they show a graph that shows there have been 18 polls on the upcoming provincial election this year. The numbers fluctuate which is to be expected. My problem is the explanations that get brought forth to explain these fluctuations. We get everything from this or that debate, this or that miscue or this or that policy. How are these conclusions derived? No one can get this information from someone that will vote for their favoured party simply due to the fact that they were going to vote for them no matter what transpires. That can only come from those voters that approach each election with an open mind and make their choice based on the information that was important to them at that time.

    It would serve everyone much better if opinions were based on some actual facts rather than conjecture.

    (Response: Maybe you missed it …or are conveniently ignoring it to fit your bias … but I have said on this blog numerous times and many of the media have also mentioned that, judging by the poll results for weeks, the Libs negative ads WERE NOT working. But continue to be “astounded”, if that’s what pleases you. 🙂 h.o

  25. D. M. Johnston says:


    Think not, my past dealings with the NDP have been far less than satisfactory, in fact dishonest. The NDP have proven to me as shifty and deceitful as the Socreds and the BC Liberals.

    It is the arrogance displayed by the NDP that is overwhelming and if Dix doesn’t start campaigning, he may snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

    Sorry old chum, that is why I am voting for an independent.

  26. RS says:

    Is it just me or has this election campaign been reduced to a series of inauthentic photo ops, flippant sound bites, and fallacious fear mongering?
    Is it just me or have the political power brokers and the mainstream media enabled the degradation of democracy in this province and by extension this country?
    Is it just me or are there others who are feeling the incessant campaigning and the untold dollars spent campaigning add up to an egregious waste of time and money?

    Yes I will exercise my franchise and vote for change, but I am sure I’m not the only one who feels their vote will hardly affect any real change.


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