Prediction Changed
6:37 PM 24/03/2007

Election Prediction Project

Federal Election - 2007

Constituency Profile

New Democratic
Comartin, Joe
Ghanam, Denise
Mastroianni, Steve
Prestanski, Kyle

Joe Comartin

2006 Result:
Joe Comartin **
Bruck Easton
Rick Fuschi
Catherine Pluard
Laura Chesnik

Previous Prediction/result
06 Prediction/04 Result
04 Prediction/00 Result

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08 09 17 Dr Bear without Prof Ape
A Liberal prediction this, that's special! Will the Liberals polling as low as they are, they are on the defense and will not be gaining seats where they got a measly 25% of the vote (with a ‘star’ candidate no less...I question just how much of a star candidate Bruck Easton was)to the incumbents 45%. Joe is well liked and he owns this riding...past his best before date...ridiculous!
08 09 14 Uphill Will
Comartin is liked but viewed as past his best before date and ineffectual.
The Tories are in disarray resultant from the resignation of their candidate.
The Libs have nominated a young, aggressive candidate named Steve Mastroianni. He has a background in the auto sector, is well connected in the community and has the full backing of the Duncan Liberal machine in the riding.
08 09 08 PY
According to the Pundits' Guide website, it seems U of W management studies professor Denise Ghanam will run for the Conservatives in place of Kristine Robinson while the Liberals counter with Steve Mastroianni, a former assistant to Susan Whelan.
I studied at the U of W's business school, and I remember Ghanam as being a popular professor. She might not find much support within the city aside from Walkerville, but she may find some as she makes her way out of Windsor, though.
But as for Mastroianni, I'm not sure if it's his time yet. Comartin's still the choice in the east side of Windsor and I don't think he's going away yet.
08 07 12 Initial
Eddie snubbed John Tory when he came to town.
Can we now put to bed this persistent rumour that somehow Eddie Francis is in any way supportive of the Conservatives?
Reportedly the local Liberals are keen to find a female candidate, such as Joyce Zuk, Sheila Wisdom or Jo-Anne Gignac. Considering their current incarnation under Dion, Donna Gamble would fit them like a glove. So far, the only declared candidate is Edy Haddad, the new Ernie Lamont of Council. If they would let Rick Limoges run again, he could give them a credible campaign.
The Conservative candidate, Kristine Robinson, was pretty good during the provincial election and her potential was likely hamstrung by Tory's campaign, where she increased the vote, along with Windsor West's Lisa Lumley (now the federal candidate as well). She should get 2nd place.
Comartin is well-loved and beloved in his hometown. He does great constituency work, and few in Windsor care about his views on foreign affairs. I think the seat will likely be retained by Comartin should he run again, however if he retires (as has been long-rumoured) this seat would be a wildcard, within reach for everyone (including the Tories!)
08 04 18 Initial
Eddie Francis openly endorsed the Liberals in 2003 and in 2007, and the federal Liberals under Paul Martin. He openly criticized the Conservative electoral platform, especially on day care. If he ever was a conservative, he certainly dropped that affiliation once he became mayor.
There's a facebook group dedicated to a Liberal nominee named Edy Haddad, who's in his early 20s and spoke out strongly against the Hezbollah billboard. His campaign is called the ‘Love Revolution’ and he also has a one-man ‘Downtown Needs to Succeed Coalition’, and is fiercely partisan. If the facebook statements are any indication, he'll need to reign it in a bit. However, I would not be surprised if they tried wooing Joyce Zuk, Bill Marra, Joanne Gignac, or even Eddie Francis himself for the nomination.
The Conservative nominee is one Kristine Robinson, a young lawyer who ran provincially in 2007. She increased the PC vote in that disastrous election, and could be a contender for 2nd place this time around, provided the federal Fuschi organization is still intact.
Comartin owns the riding, but rumour has it that he'll be retiring soon - will Lewenza fill his shoes? We'll see...
08 04 01 PY
I agree with you there about the Francis/CPC connection, C B, even as I'm almost five years removed from my days at U of W. If memory serves, I believe he also worked the phones for Mike Harris a few years back.
Raymond Morand last held the seat (then known as Essex East) for the Conservatives in 1935 and was Paul Martin the elder's nemesis for two elections. Times have drastically changed since then, but as sure as the Low/Martin property still stands today, I wouldn't bet on a CPC renaissance.
08 03 14 Dr Bear & Prof Ape
Dear C.B....very well, points conceded. However given the general rise in conservative votes over the timeline given, it's probably more a manifestation of the general national trend, rather than any particularity that was local. Over the past 10 years we go from the post-93 PC implosion to a disorganized right to a ?scary? united right and on to the not-so-scary united right in government today. The general trend would be upward. As for the comments of the Arab vote (and Mayor Francis' Lebenese background), true not all ethnic groups vote in monolithic blocks, however the one giant thorny issue with Arabs is Israel. Any party that supports Israel as the CPC has (we cite Harper's measured response statement) can not expect much support in the Arab community, but rather anger and disdain. We asked a number of our Arab friends and that issue alone killed CPC support from the people we asked (not a scientific analysis, we know, but just to emphasize the point). In addition to this, we re-emphasize the massive out pouring of support for the Lebanese in the war two summers back.
08 03 14 C B
To add to my previous submission, Eddie Francis running for the Conservatives was not my personal assessment or opinion. There was an article in the Windsor Star during the last municipal campaign in which his main challenger accused him of only planning to serve a partial term if reelected because he was planning on running for the Conservatives federally. Of course, it doesn't mean he necessarily will or that that is even his political persuasion, but it was in the newspaper and was worth mentioning. Previous arguments that Bear and Ape have made have been that not all Italians vote Liberal, and I would suggest that they remember that before stating that just because Francis is Lebanese that he must not support the Conservatives. In addition, in asking if I even reside in Windsor, which I do as I stated previously, I am sure that the good professor and doctor would agree with me that electoral awareness and aptitude is not based on living in a given constituency (although it can give added insight). I am sure that they would not want to discredit their own predictions elsewhere in the country simply because they do not live there.
08 03 01 C B
Dear Prof and Doc...there is some apparent confusion as to what some of my comments meant, so please allow me to clarify for you. For the record, by the way, I DO live in Windsor, to answer your question. The term ‘Conservative wasteland’ would indicate that the Conservatives had very little to no presence or vote prior to ten years ago. That does include, YES, all the way back to 50 years ago. The term wasteland would indicate that they did NOT do well, not the other way around. I think you may misunderstand what the term means. For example, the combined PC and Reform vote in 1993 in both Windsor ridings was only a couple of thousand votes, at or below 5,000 in each riding if I am not mistaken. That would mean that in the space of 10 years (15 years if you want to split hairs), the small ‘c’ conservative vote in the city, yes, the CITY has more than doubled from 10,000 to 21,000 votes (using your figure, which after checking IS more accurate). Does that mean they will win, NO, not necessarily. My point was simply that they have been doing increasingly better in the city of Windsor, which is shocking given its political history. I enjoy our
07 06 10 binriso
Probably one of only three or four seats that id for certain put into the NDP column for now. Comartin won in 2000 during the Chretien era of Ontario dominance so i really can?t see him losing. CPC aren?t too much of a factor and it would take something big to unseat the NDP.
07 05 08 Dr Bear & Prof Ape
An addition to our previous submission: Eddie Francis is Lebanese-Canadian. It is highly unlikely he would run for the party who's leader professed that Israel's response to Hezbollah's attack as a ‘measured response’. Anyone who was in the city of Windsor last summer would have noticed that it seemed that every second car was flying the Lebanese flag. The Lebanese community (and Arab community in general) is relatively strong here in Windsor and it would look very very bad for Eddie to run for the CPC and he'd probably face much scorn and ridicule if he did so (not that we actually think he would do so in the first place, IOHO). As for Windsor being a ‘conservative wasteland’ ten years ago, we all know how ridiculous a statement that was, considering Liberal support across Ontario in the 90's. However we though that perhaps there was an error in the time frame of that statement and some confusion between Windsor and Essex (as we said, two very different beasties). So after some checking we found that Liberal support in Essex county goes all the way back to the 1950's! Two exceptions were Essex-Kent, which went PC in the Mulrony sweep of 84 (went back to the Liberals in 88 though) and Essex-Windsor which went NDP during the 80's. Prety much everything else was Liberal, Liberal, Liberal. Looks more like a Liberal wasteland to us.
07 05 07 Dr Bear & Prof Ape
There needs to be a little clarification pertaining to some of the things C.B. has posted. Ten years ago was 1997 and Windsor was represented by Shaughnessy Cohen and Herb Grey; both Liberals. To call anywhere in Ontario a ‘conservative wasteland’ during that time is subject to ridicule. Now prior to Cohen, this riding was represented by McCurdy; an NDPer. Before that we have MacGuigan; a Liberal. By now we've got to 1968 and irrelevancy because we all know that ridings change (a lot!) over 40 years. Once again we have people comparing Windsor proper to the county. Two very different beasties there! Anyone who lives in the area will recognise that (do you actually live in Windsor CB, as you claimed in a 2006 prediction?). And what's so great about a party getting 25,000 votes (we count closer to 21,000 but now we're splitting hairs) between TWO ridings? That is less than 25% of the popular vote (of TWO ridings) when that party was going to form a government...not a ringing endorsement from the electorate. And why would Eddie Francis want to run for the CPC? Is he even a Conservative? He was re-elected massively less than a year ago, why would he just up and leave his great job for a possible defeat? Makes no sense!
07 05 04 C B
Well, I was one person who thought that the Conservatives had a fighting shot here last January. I will say that it seems that Comartin has solidified his support base here considerably. I don't believe though that my prediction of a Conservative win last time was from left field. People need to remember that the Windsor area was deemed to be a ‘conservative wasteland’ as recent as ten years ago. The entire county is now represented by Conservatives Watson and Van Kesteren and the 2 Conservative candidates in Windsor together achieved almost 25,000 votes in '06. If you had predicted that ten years ago, people would have laughed hysterically. Comartin will win again it seems, but don't rule out a future Conservative win in Windsor if they were to nominate the right candidate (possibly Mayor Francis as has been suggested?).
07 04 09 PY
Well, I finished the autobiography of Paul Martin (the elder) not too long ago and the riding's certainly changed since his day, more so than he'd ever imagine. Now, I haven't read or heard anything to suggest Allan Rock wants to leave Sutts, Strosberg to make a comeback so unless it's possible to resurrect Shaughnessy Cohen (RIP) or someone with plenty of clout and civic pride emerges with the Liberal nom, it'll be a hold for the NDP.
07 04 05 A.S.
True, it might be a pipe dream for Windsor to vote like Oshawa, but Tories ought look on the bright side: if one accounts for '06 Liberal candidate Bruck Easton's past as President of the Federal Progressive Conservatives, a de facto ‘united right’ bested Joe Comartin by 3600 votes and 7 points! (An argument for a French-style second round of voting?)
07 03 31 Full Name
Comartin is running once again, despite rumours that his retirement would be imminent, which would have paved the way for Ken Lewenza Jr. to run for the NDP.
Joe is popular in the riding, and has full backing of the local CAW, with the notable exception of Ken Lewenza Sr., who appeared on stage with Paul Martin last election to promote the Liberal Party. Joe is not unbeatable (witness his '97 and '99 losses to Cohen and Limoges) but he is generally regarded as a good constituency MP. His obvious limitations lie in his inability to command federal spending in his riding, and in his moral inconsistency (voting for the Liberal budget while savaging it for a lack of Automotive strategy, or his lack of support for any border solution whatsoever, even the ‘do nothing’ option). Joe's support for SSM, which got him into trouble with the Catholic Church, had no impact on voters, nor did his early opposition to raising the age of sexual consent (against the New Democratic Party line). A betting man would not bet against Joe Comartin at this point in time.
However, rumour has it that both the Liberals and Conservatives are courting Alan Halberstadt to run on their behalf. The Tories would especially benefit from a Halberstadt candidacy simply because he polls well in Walkerville and in the fringes of downtown where they generally fare worst. The Liberals may have the upper hand, as he has been aligned with them in the past, but lately he has visibly aligned himself to prominent local Conservatives via his video blogs. Some Tories were also quite active in his campaign for City Council.
The Liberals have an ace up their sleeve, however. Allan Rock has moved into the community, and if he has leadership aspirations this would be the perfect place to do it. Recapturing this seat with his profile, owing to the provincial Liberal strength here, is doable. However, should the Liberals pull votes from the NDP, we'd have a genuine 3-way race with an Al Leach in Toronto Centre victory with the Tories eking out a victory.
I know it sounds farfetched, but despite the projections of victory last time by local Tories, they did manage to bump up their vote by 3000 over 2004. Considering their near-victory in 1984 with Tom Porter, if they do it again, they could conceivably win, especially with a candidate like Halberstadt whose opinions on issues are quite clear.
07 03 24 M. Lunn
I don't know where anyone got the idea the Tories would take this. Maybe they might finish ahead in the Tecumseh portion (which they almost did last time around), but they will get clobbered in Windsor as this is an NDP stronghold and unless the Liberals can run some star candidate, I think Joe Comartin is pretty safe.
07 03 22 Dr Bear & Prof Ape
Last election we felt like we fought with every CPC supporter in this riding, who were convinced that Fuschi was going to oust Comartin. After Fuschi placed a sobering distant third (25.3%) to Comartin (44.6%), such optimism may be a bit more tempered this time. Between the 2004 and 2006 elections, Comartin's support was rock solid, despite many claims to the contrary. Some may argue that job cuts at Ford on the day of the 2006 election (FYI no jobs were lost at the Windsor plants in that announcement) may have frightened people away from voting Tory. Perhaps so for some voters, but not enough to cost Fuschi the win. He may have placed a distant second had the job cuts announcment been made some other time. As there is no real complaints against Comartin, and the bulk of this riding being blue collar Windsor with its deep CAW/NDP roots, Joe will probably be around once again after the next election.

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