Election Prediction Project

British Columbia Provincial Election - 2011

Oak Bay-Gordon Head

Prediction Changed
2013-05-15 08:37:51

Constituency Profile


Chong, Ida

Kazakoff, Greg

Van der Veen, Jessica

Weaver, Andrew

Ida Chong


  • Previous Prediction - 2009 Provincial Election
  • Pundits’ Guide - 2008 Prepresentation Order

    2009 Result:

    Ida Chong*
    Jessica Van der Veen
    Steven Johns


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    13 05 13 76723732
    I don't see the NDP winning here by 5000 votes or by any votes at all. Chong has the advantage of being the incumbent and one who has been an effective local MLA for her constituents. She has a certain goodwill in the community. Van der veen while doing great work for Oak Bay Lodge, doesn't have the resume or the smarts or the charisma to win this riding over. She also doesn't have the sensible policies. For example, her position on the deer problem is for the Province to sit back and let the municipalities get tied up in endless court battles as to who has jurisdiction over wildlife in urban areas. By the time, the dust settles it will be too late for a human birth control program and the deer population will have expanded to the point where there may be outbreaks Lyme disease. Weaver, on the other hand, wants action now based on evidence and in a manner compassionate to the deer. This election is between Weaver as the progressive choice and Chong as the status quo choice. I give the edge to Chong with Weaver a close second.
    13 05 13 SmartyMarty
    Anyone who tells you they know how OBG is going to go is either lying or guessing. There are 3 credible scenarios, each equally likely:
    - Weaver draws a large number of voters from what were both NDP and Liberal supporters for the win;
    - Van Der Veen holds on to the core NDP support and benefits from enough former Liberal support to push her over the top;
    - Chong sneaks up the middle when Weaver's star power draws support from NDPers more than Liberal supporters.
    (And p.s. if you believe that the Uplands has a large enough population to influence the total riding AND has no new construction, your flagrant lack of knowledge has just disqualified you from commenting on this riding.)
    13 05 13 Jesse Bone
    The only close race in this riding will be for 2nd Place. The NDP will win here by 4000-5000 votes.
    13 05 13 Mike J
    I predict a Green in in OBG. Andrew has been very active, is a truly credible candidate and seems to have tremendous support from home owners in the riding. I notice that most Ida Chong signs are on public property whereas the Green and NDP signs are on private property. I am hopeful that the riding's voters will elect an internationally renowned scientist over a retired actress.
    13 05 13 rosesandthorns
    On the last day before the election it is clear that vote splitting will let the Liberal Party keep this riding. The NDP will place second and the Greens third.
    13 05 12 Tony
    Some of the comments below look like wishful thinking, probably by partisans. Greens are taking votes from Libs, but not NDP?? No way. I'm seeing excitement among a lot of long-time voters to be able to elect BC's first Green MLA. Looks like it's going to happen. (NDP needs to develop environmental policy based on principle ... not opportunism or political correctness.)
    13 05 12 DougP
    The Greens will wind up with a strong third place, robbing the NDP of sufficient votes and sending Ida Chong back downtown to continue bellying-up at the public trough.
    13 05 07
    If signs are any indication, I think the Greens are winning hands down. I see that South Oak Bay is a forest of Green signs and Gordon Head/Mount Tolmie (generally more NDP parts of the riding) appears to be going Green by the signs as well. I even see the Green signs intruding in a noticeable way into Liberal strongholds such as Ten Mile Point. The NDP's recent announcements opposing Kinder Morgan doesn't appear to have swung any votes away from the Greens in OBGH - on the contrary, it looks like this race will be between the Greens and the Liberals.
    13 05 07 Clark
    On my street there are 5 Green lawn signs and 2 NDP lawn signs. The Northern half of this riding (where I am) is in Elizabeth May's riding and voted overwhelmingly Green in 2011. If lawn signs are any indication they will do so again. I think the southern half will be closer - On a bus ride which went from the North to the South, I counted 11 Green signs, 8 NDP and 3 Liberal.
    13 05 05 resident
    Yes the Greens are making a huge push in this riding, but where are these voters coming from? Many are people who have been disenfranchised by both major parties and will likely be voting in their first election in years. The Greens also seem to be drawing voters away from the BCL as much as, if not more than, the BCNDP. With the Cons not looking like a viable option, upset Lib voters will be voting Green.
    In other words, it seems more likely that the Greens will split the vote with the BCL than the BCNDP. We saw this in the federal Victoria riding last fall.
    13 05 03 OBGHobserver
    Only the Uplands has kept this division out of the NDP column. The influence of the Uplands, where no new construction occurs, is declining and the gap between the NDP and the Liberals with it.
    I can't agree with that conclusion. If anything, the riding's population as a whole is not growing but its affluence is. Take a walk down Queenswood Dr. in the Saanich side of the riding to see a bunch of brand new, enormous, extremely expensive mansions going up in the last year or two. Even middle class Gordon Head is seeing the rise of new, very upscale homes near the water that do not vote NDP. And of course, in addition to the Uplands, there are always the affluent neighbourhoods of Ten Mile Point, Gonzales Hill, Beach Drive/Anderson Hill part of South of Oak Bay, University Woods that dependably vote liberal. If anything the demographics of this riding are becoming less favourable to the NDP.
    13 05 03 Teddy Boragina
    The polls don't lie. The Greens are ahead of the Liberals on Vancouver Island. That support, I can tell you, is not in the rural areas, or in Nanaimo, it is in the greater Victoria area. That along pushes Green support across the region to 25% or even 30%. I for one find it very hard to believe that they'll end up with exactly 30% in each and every one of those ridings, especially when they are targeting the hell out of this one.
    Unless the Greens drop to 15% or less on Vancouver Island, they will win this riding.
    13 05 03 Matt
    I am going to go out on a limb and predict a green win here. Even though the polls are tightening, the lefty island remains unfriendly territory for the liberals. The greens are polling stronger on the island. Former liberal voters looking for change would be less inclined to switch to the NDP in this affluent riding than the greens as a protest vote.
    13 05 01 90107832A
    The demise of Ida Chong has been predicted for years and yet every time it looks like she is finished, she survives. Let's keep in mind that when the NDP was in power last time for at least half of the time, Chong was the MLA. During the last election in 2009, it looked like the NDP was going to take this seat and during the early evening, it looked liked they were even or ahead of the BC Liberals. Then, suddenly the results came pouring in from a bunch of upper crust polling stations and lo and behold Ida won - AGAIN. Let's also not forget the recall campaign after the HST debacle arose. The NDP and Conservative recent HST recall effort poured resources in this riding and yet there was a resounding rejection of the recall and once again Ida Chong prevailed - by this time a big margin. No matter how much bad press she gets province wide, she seems to be the unsinkable ?Hedy Fry? of the Island.
    13 04 30 Beeceemark
    This is as unscientific as it gets, but driving through parts of the rising last night, I was struck by the number of Green signs on private lawns, and the fact that along Shelbourne Street for about 4 km, I saw not one Liberal sign, and only a few NDP signs. Weaver has a good shot at this riding.
    13 04 29 Jared
    Exams are now finished at UVic and Camosun, and students are heading off to their summer destinations. It's extremely hard to organize students in this transition period, so the student vote will have no impact on the election. (This is one reason why the NDP might move the fixed elections to the fall.)
    13 04 28 Jesse Bone
    The only close race in this riding will be for 2nd Place. The NDP will win here by 4000-5000 votes.
    13 04 28 BCL
    The Green will take away from the NDP and the Liberals will retain this riding. Enough said.
    13 04 27 Greens Not Strong Enough
    Ida is done for. She barely won last time and was even targeted for a recall campaign. The Greens really have no chance. As Numbers Dork pointed out, they have far too much ground to gain that it would take an enormous self-destruction on the part of the NDP. If anything, they will split the vote just enough that Ida will squeak in, but I think the NDP is just too strong for that to happen.
    13 04 27 NO PARTISAN BS
    Despite concerted efforts to re-write electoral history, this is a safe NDP win. The inability of the Liberals to cut into the popular vote of the NDP is turning this from a close Liberal win into a toss up. The NDP vote province wide seems to have a floor of 45% and any fluctuations seem to be primarily between the Liberals and the Greens on the Island ridings. Not enough Liberal vote will stay loyal to give them a chance and not enough will move to the Greens to put them in the race. 45NDP-25GREEN-20LIB-10OTHERS and the GREENS get their moral victory but nothing more.
    13 04 28 Dr. J.
    This is a very interesting race indeed. What makes it unlike other divisions in the Victoria region is the presence of ?the Uplands? within the riding. This enclave of ultra-rich voters has kept OBG in the Liberal column since 1991. In general, however, Victoria is moving towards being an NDP safe haven. Only the Uplands has kept this division out of the NDP column. The influence of the Uplands, where no new construction occurs, is declining and the gap between the NDP and the Liberals with it. The wild card is Andrew Weaver, the Green candidate, who enjoys a good local reputation. If this were a straight Liberal-NDP match up it would be an easy NDP gain.
    A few data points: lawn signs are fairly evenly distributed between the NDP and the Greens. The Green signs were up early (in some cases before the writ was dropped) but NDP signs have caught up and I would say that we are looking at a dead heat. The Greens have placed two signs on some lots, indicating that they have fewer supporters than they initially anticipated, but two NDP signs appear on a few lots as well. Ida Chong signs are few and far between. (I see a lot of Oak Bay and less of Gordon Head.) Jessica van der Veen did very well at the all candidates meeting at Oak Bay United Church. She appeared to be the best briefed of the candidates.
    The Greens were nowhere near being competitive in the last election. They need a huge swing to elect an MLA here -- but the Victoria federal by election of last year, which saw a surge in the Green vote, suggests that this may be possible. In this riding, the Greens can take votes from the Liberals as well as from the NDP. You seen more Green signs near the water (that is, in more valuable properties) than in inland neighbourhoods.
    I spoke to someone on the NDP campaign, and he says that this is a tight three way race, but I see it coming down to a Green-NDP race. In my view, the decisive factor will be the final polls. If the Liberals close the gap, some people who are thinking about voting Green will go NDP, unwilling to risk another Liberal government. If the NDP continues to enjoy a large lead across the Province, then a Green victory is more likely. The Green canvasser who visited my house argued that I should vote Green because the NDP was going to win Provincially. If that is the sell they are making, they could lose votes on election day if the outcome seems in the least doubtful.
    13 04 23 Numbers Dork
    People need to stop constructing these narratives: ?Oak Bay will elect a Green candidate because it would be historical!? is complete nonsense.
    The Liberals are down sufficiently province-wide (and *especially* on Vancouver Island) that OBG is probably already lost to them. It was a close race last time, but when your share of the vote declines 20%, your marginal constituencies are no longer marginal. Or yours.
    And some of that Liberal spillover will go to the NDP. If the NDP can gain just ~10% of the total Liberal support from the previous election, that puts them above 50%--and undefeatable.
    The Greens, conversely, need to gain nearly 80% of the previous Liberal support just to be *competitive*. Barring a total NDP-in-2001-style meltdown, that's off the table.
    None of this is to say the Greens won't make a splash, but suggesting they're going to leapfrog both of the established parties, especially when one of those parties is both on the ascent and desperately close to topping 50% of the vote (if they aren't over that figure already!) is nothing more than wishful thinking.
    13 04 21 Gordon Head Resident
    Weaver will win a very close race for a few reasons. First, Weaver has an outstanding reputation on the environment and his victory would put Gordon Head-Oak Bay on the world map as he is a Nobel Prize winner. Second, Weaver will certainly win a significant amount of previous Chong supporters due to the HST, Chong's per high diem expenses at the Legislature, ethnic voter scandal etc. Third, Oak Bay Gordon Head has only ever elected one NDP Candidate (Elizabeth Cull in by-election in 1989 and general election in 1991) and even she was defeated in 1996 despite being Finance Minister and Deputy Premier; Van der Veen is in for a tight race. Fourth, Elizabeth May won large portions of this Saanich riding previously.
    13 04 16 TCTC5
    This riding is shaping up to be THE electoral battleground on the Island. All parties have an incentive to pour most of their Island resources into this riding and they probably will. Why? For the NDP, this likely is the one riding that could prevent a sweep of the Island. For the Liberals, this is likely the one riding they have a chance of retaining on the Island. For the Greens, OBGH is likely the best chance they have of getting any beachhead in the BC leg. They'll put all of their resources here and maybe Saanich North. My advice for the parties. Jessica, showcasing the NDP tax hikes on high income earners as a central part of the NDP economic platform won't cut it in a riding with the highest income on Van Island. Try something else. Ida should keep hammering away on the NDP as targeting the affluent - not just the 1% but the 20% which is really most of the riding. That should scare the comfy seniors with their nest eggs as well as the high rollers that are in abundance in OBGH. The Greens should keep highlighting the impressive CV of Andrew Weaver and how they represent a clean break from the old line parties. And everyone here seems to have problems with an expanding deer population ravaging their gardens. Whoever comes up with a possible solution to that will probably win.
    13 04 16 Former OBGH Resident
    Weaver will draw more from typical OBGH BCNDP voters than BC Liberal voters. 40/30/30 for Ida.
    13 04 16 JH
    The media are starting to take note of the traction that the Greens are gaining on Vancouver Island:
    I think Andrew Weaver could take OBGH for the BC Greens. They are strategically focusing resources in ridings that match up closely with Elizabeth May's SGI win federally in 2011 and OBGH in particular could be interesting because of the potential for the university vote if the Greens can get a successful GOTV team on the ground.
    I'm predicting this one as a three-way nail biter with the Greens squeaking by with a win.
    13 04 16 Melanie Cohen
    Honestly, I do not even think this will be a contest. My door has been knocked on, talking to friends at work or at the gym all are in general agreement. I don't usually follow the elections too closely but became more aware after the by-election. I think Adam Olsen has a really good shot in Saanich but I only say that because of the demographic and because of Elizabeth of course, and from what a few friends on Saltspring have told me. This ones going Green hands down.
    13 04 14 T&DVictoria
    Suspect it will be down to the wire on election night. Yes ? conservative leaning riding but also a high student population September ? April. Weaver more likely to take away from Liberal base so possible NDP win
    13 04 12
    The greens are a factor here, but not like that.
    The NDP in almost every poll for the island is 50-55% of the decided vote. The liberals are fracturing.
    This seat has a deep conservative root. It was the last seat of the old PC Party under Dr. Scott Wallace.
    The NDP vote if its so high on the island is likely very safe here. Whatever harm the greens may be would be to the liberals.
    The liberal vote is the one that will be cut in half; some to the greens, some to the conservatives. NDP should pick up this seat with little trouble.
    If the greens to exceed expectations, it could only be to serve up the re-election of Ida Chong as a 5th term BC Liberal MLA.
    13 04 01 StevenT
    I just came back from the riding and I formerly thought this would be the first Green seat. I'm now having my doubts. I don't feel the same momentum to put in a Green that happened during the Victoria federal by-election. Galloway was more popular than Weaver is. I think it will be an NDP-Liberal showdown in the end and the Greens could draw votes from both parties. However, in spite of the disaster that is Christy Clark, there is a certain loyalty to Chong in the community. As pointed out in previous posts, at least half of the riding simply won't vote NDP and the NDP vote in the riding is not so much a vote for the NDP but a vote against the ?free enterprise coalition?. Ida held this seat through one NDP government and she very well could do the same. The NDP candidate while a good candidate is not high profile and likely will not be in cabinet. And again, I don't feel the same desire to elect a Green provincially as there was federally. This will be the only seat on the Island to be left with wreckage of the Liberals.
    13 03 29 CharlesYetman
    I agree that support province wide for the Green Party isn't close to any of the ?established parties?. That said, Oak Bay Gordon Head does not necessarily follow the trends of the province as a whole. The residents tend to vote sometimes in ?quirky? ways. For instance, they often elect Liberals, Conservatives or Social Credit MLA's when they NDP is in power. Oak Bay Gordon Head is a big part of Victoria that almost put in a Green Party MP in the last federal by-election. The other part of the OBGH riding is part of Elizabeth May's Green federal riding. The Greens do not need much province wide support to win 1 or 2 seats. All they need to do is concentrate on one or two key ridings. They will pour resources into Oak Bay Gordon Head and into Saanich North and the Islands. I predict they will take enough votes from both the Liberals and the NDP to put Weaver into the Leg.
    13 03 29 Pundit
    I would bet my money on Andrew Weaver to pick up this seat. His ability to pick up new votes, combined with the Liberals and New Democrats who will lean his way will give him a fair margin of victory. The Greens won the polls in this riding in the Victoria by-election federally, Weaver's strong campaign and profile will extend this to the provincial scene.
    13 03 27 Laurence Putnam
    The enigmatic and uninspiring Ida Chong is one of those politicians like Hedy Fry, whose seat is on deathwatch every election cycle. This time however, the party is truly over. She will probably have one of the top three showings for the Liberals on the Island, but at this stage I would wager there is a better chance of the Liberals hanging onto Parksville-Qualicum than keeping this.
    The Green threat makes for interesting conversation and given their recent federal win and the almost-win in Victoria, interesting conversation it is indeed.
    However, I believe you will find that in elections that tilt dramatically to the right or left, the most established party is usually the beneficiary of undecided support.
    For example, during the Diefenbaker and Mulroney landslides, marginal right-wing parties like Social Credit were wiped out, and when the Liberals cruised to victory in 1993, the NDP was reduced to 9 seats.
    The NDP is clearly the established left wing party in ascendency in this election cycle, and while the Greens might put up some good numbers the province-wide support isn't there.
    13 03 25 GV
    In the frenzy to analyze the results of last year's federal by-election, I think some predictors are being too bullish about Green prospects here. To claim that ?the NDP rarely win this riding? is to overlook the 2-point victory margin for the Liberals last time. It would not take much to flip that result in the opposite direction. It also disregards the fact that the NDP rarely win province-wide anyway--this election isn't going to be a typical one.
    Yes, the Greens came close federally. But the NDP is in a much stronger position provincially at this point. And I feel that most votes the Greens will be taking this time will be from disaffected Liberal voters. The NDP, I suspect, won't be as hard-hit. And they should capture this seat by a thin margin over a second-place Green finish, just like they did federally in November.
    13 03 24 bza
    This will be an interesting riding to watch on election night. A Liberal incumbent, combined with high polling numbers for the NDP and the same candidate as 2009, and the factor of a well known Green candidate makes for some interesting 3 way race dynamics.
    What I think will happen is that the support for Andrew Weaver will largely draw on the votes that Ida Chong received in 2009. While the NDP support will hold and allow Jessica Van der Veen to come up the middle.
    13 03 22
    The NDP rarely win this riding - when they do, it is usually for one term with a top notch high profile candidate. This riding is not NDP territory and probably the least likely on the Island to elect an NDP member (the other are Saanich-North and Parksville). It has the highest income of any riding on the Island and the highest home values. Keep in mind that this riding houses the vast majority of the wealthiest neighbourhoods in Victoria and the Island as a whole. There are tons of upscale polling stations that never go NDP in places such as Uplands, Ten Mile Point, Gonzales Hill, Queenswood, Willows Beach, Gordon Point, the area around the Victoria Golf Course, half of South Oak Bay etc. That said, even the residents of these posh areas have had about enough of the BC Liberals and are ready for change. They will not vote Liberal but they will not vote NDP. This riding is a portion of the Victoria Federal riding and contributed greatly to the NDP almost losing their Federal riding to the Green Party in the recent Victoria Federal by-election. I predict that BC's first green party MLA will be elected in this riding.
    13 03 17
    The important point to keep in mind is that in 2009, Ida Chong won by less than 3% over the same NDP Candidate (Van der Veen) who is running in 2013. Considering the HST, Chong's high per diem expense claims at the Legislature, ethnic voter scandal, etc., the Van der Veen will win on election day.
    13 03 15 Taylor
    Weaver will put up a good fight and will almost certainly be the most successful candidate for the Greens in BC. However he has almost certainly inadvertently handed the riding to the BC Liberals. He will likely take a bit of vote bleed from Chong but my bet is that Chong's vote will be (mostly) resilient while Weaver and Van Der Veen will split the vote, my guess is a narrow 3 way race with Chong finishing under five percent ahead of Weaver and Van Der Veen who will come within two percent of each other
    13 03 12 DFinch
    The Green Party's Weaver will gain disaffected voters from both major political parties plus, if the campaign is well run, increase the turnout in his favour as Elizabeth May did federally in Saanich-Gulf Islands. This will probably come down to a race between the NDP and Greens, with the BC Libs Chong unlikely to surpass 30% of the popular vote, divvying up the remainder. To say this riding is not NDP territory when they routinely get over 40% of the vote though, is balderdash. The party machinery will be in full swing and will be very difficult to counter. Depending how the ground campaign goes, this will be close with a slight NDP edge from where we stand now. But I reserve the right to alter this prediction closer to election day!
    13 03 08 NO PARTISAN BS
    The NDP will sweep the Island and the only issues to be decided are the margin of victory and how much the Green vote will grow. The Liberals could drop into third in this riding.
    13 03 02 OBGHresident
    This is not naturally an NDP riding. The riding is filled with high end professionals, old money types and management level civil servants. There are lots of rich retired people here, too. That said, it isn't impossible for the NDP to win this seat but they need someone of the caliber of Liz Cull, the former NDP Finance Minister. Even Cull lost the riding the second time around when the NDP still won the provincial vote. As such, as much as Van Der Veen is a nice person and a community activist, she isn't high profile enough to push this riding into the NDP ?win column?. If the Liberals falter here (and there is every indication they are), it will be the Green Party that will win, not the NDP. Weaver is high profile enough to win and the anti-NDP vote will rally around the Green Party. This happened in the recent Federal election with many traditional Liberal and Conservative voters going Green to vote against the NDP.
    13 02 09 Islander
    Van der Veen ran a close second in a race the BCNDP lost - since then has been profiled in the community working to preserve seniors housing. With a weakened Lib vote, combined with name recognition as a community advocate, she'll take the seat in 2013.
    13 02 05 JKennethY
    The Island will go 100% NDP. The Greens have an outside chance in a seat or two and will finish well ahead of the BC Libs in popular vote. The Conservatives are out of the question

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