Pundits’ Guide – Ontario (London West)
2011 Provincial Election Prediction
2011 Federal Election Prediction
2008 Federal Election Prediction
2007 Provincial Election Prediction
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| ||14 06 10
|The byelection here was a marginally less dramatic case of Nate Silver-busting than Kitchener-Waterloo--yes, the NDP managed low-to-mid-20s provincially and federally in 2011 (as opposed to K-W's mid-to-high-teens); but conventional wisdom long had it as the least NDP-compatible of London's ridings. Well, yes, it was, marginally--but the superlative was blown out of proportion due to the fact that in the "strategic voting" banner year of 1999, it was the only London riding where the Libs had the "strategic anti-Tory option" official bragging rights all by themselves. So, those who could read between the lines could tell that Sattler's victory potential *wasn't* such a pipe dream. And now, in a general election, it's officially a three-way mess--but, hey, messes are exciting; can't wait to pore over the polling maps here...|
| ||14 06 08
|Peggy Sattler has the lead according to a local poll..over the Conservatives...the lIberals are in third place...35, 31, 29...|
| ||14 06 07
||Toronto Star/Forum Poll|
|London West (polled Sunday, 730 people, accurate to within 4 percentage points, 19 times out of 20) New Democrat Peggy Sattler 35 per cent, Progressive Conservative Jeff Bennett 31 per cent, Liberal Nick Steinberg 29 per cent, Green Keith McAlister 3 per cent.|
| ||14 06 07
|Much to my personal disappointment I am calling this one for the Dippers.|
The observations in my home riding is that Sattler is winning the ground war. I live on a major street in the riding, she's the only one whose gotten to our house with a pamphlet delivered by volunteers. She's got big lawn signs on a lot of private property and she's benefiting from the polls showing some NDP strength in the southwest. Her volunteers are jubilant and I'm not seeing that from the other two front runners.
My heart says the PCs will take it but they do not have (it would appear) the ground game I was hoping for. A week after volunteering for sign duty I have not had a call. The financial advantage does not seem to be there and I just don't think they've got enough in the tank to take this one.
Don't see the Liberal traditional vote rallying to the young candidate either so I'm giving it to the dippers, not so much by default as by best of a collection of mediocre efforts.
The Gretkzy factor will not draw enough votes away from the PCs to make them lose, the NDP is just stronger than we all wanted to admit when the writ was dropped.
| ||14 06 06
|One of the best indicators of weather a by-election win indicates a trend or a blip is turnout. The turnout for the by-election was a full 12,000 votes below that of the general. The winning NDP by-election MPP got 15,704 votes, compared to the winning Liberal general-election MPP from 2011 with 22,610|
This riding is solidly Liberal on the math, even with the by-election victory.
| ||14 06 02
|This shapes to be an interesting three-way race rather than a two-way PC-NDP race of 2013 byelection, with the Liberal candidate Nick Steinburg stumbling out of the gate after personal revelations, but recovering remarkably, well advertised, performing well in debates. Association with Chris Bentley, a resigned former Minister taking responsibility for the gas plant scandal, matters little for Steinburg, in fact may even help as Bentley may yet run for Mayor of London either later this year or in 2018. I expect Liberal vote to increase substantially compared to the 2013 dismal bielection performance and to recover much of the ground lost to NDP's Sattler. However, Steinburg has no inherent advantage of Matthews in University-dominated London North Center, and progressivist vote is much more varied here, with the PCs also having a good chance. Steinburg has a lot of ground to cover after 2013 debacle of Ken Koran, but he has a good organization behind him and long Liberal history in the riding, and the Liberals fight very seriously here while withdrawing from serious contest in Elgin (Conservative) and London-Fanshawe (NDP) ridings. I will not be surprised if Steinburg wins. |
Incumbent NDP Peggy Sattler, a controversial former school board member of socialist orientation, benefitted last year from two factors not in play today: 1) a degree of anti-Muslim bias by a section of Conservative voters against her opponent Ali Chahbar, with some anecdotal evidence a few PC supporters stayed home for this reason (few Muslims vote for PCs beyond the core supporters, so for good or not, they do not have to worry about this vote); 2) the August 1 bielection date in the midst of a cottage season, something affecting Conservative and Liberal supporters much more than the NDP base. She is running a strong campaign, but except for the early days when she had an incumbency advantage, it is arguably not better than any of her two opponents. Jeff Bennett's ability to win this for the PCs in a three-way race depends a lot on attracting the angry anti-Liberal vote, and as the Conservatives in many other ridings, he will benefit from high voter turnout. If this happens, as I expect, he will offset Liberal gains even as the Liberals recover their own ground from Sattler and the NDP, and be ahead of Sattler as well. Sattler's biggest hope is in populist left, but most of this vote has already been accounted for last time when Sattler run a very strong campaign and NDP 'found' a few less-well-to-do voters who may be seduced with government benefits. She will likely keep most of her voters, but I cannot see her gaining new ones forcing her to fight hard for the existing vote with the Liberals, and overall it is all very close, and any party can be first, second, or third. I expect the last minute angry marginal PC-leaning voters to be sufficient to put Bennett in Queen's Park in this politically moderate mostly middle-class riding where the NDP is still seen by many as too extreme and unreliable, and I expect for the Liberals to just fall slightly short of target, but too much can depend on election day weather and last minute handshakes.
| ||14 06 02
|During my yard sale travels this weekend, I noticed that Peggy Sattler is definitely winning the sign war, and I'm talking signs on people's private property, not general lawn signs. There are still pockets of PC support here, too, particularly west of Wonderland Rd., but I think that Jeff Bennett's recent confusion around his Million Jobs Plan support may shake some voters. At the very least, the Liberals will be a very distant third place here. Very few Liberal signs anywhere. |
| ||14 05 26
|Arden: Tory vote 'stability' might not be enough in a seat where they haven't even hit a third of the vote in recent elections (the byelection not excluded) Otherwise, London West is one of those seats where I can confidently say 'told you so' re not underestimating NDP potential--long viewed as the most 'unwinnable' of the London seats, but more out a misreading of 1999's sunken Dipper figure (unlike the other two London seats, this is where the Liberals, not the NDP, was strategically endorsed vs Mike Harris). And, kinda strange that LNW, the most heavily NDP-targeted London seat in '99 (due to the Boyd vs Cunningham epic matchup), is the only one presently *not* held by the party...|
| ||14 05 30
|Still holding out on a call here. I do believe there is a slight to Al Gretzky of the freedom party not being mentioned in the list of candidates. While I dismiss his chances, he is well known name in the riding, was on the by-election ballot and had a large vote count not to many years ago for the federal Canadian Alliance. |
I don't see the Freedom vote hurting anyone in a close race. I rethink most who are prepared to vote freedom will either hold their noses and vote for the more moderate PC or would not vote any other way and would abstain if without a candidate.
Green Party will struggle with the late candidate change and will behave similarly in a tight race but could really disperse to all three parties.
That leaves the big three.
My experience as a political volunteer tells me the Liberals and PCs are well oiled machines I give the Liberals an edge on their organization the NDP is a distant third in the category. If it comes down to a close race the GOTV organization best structured to get out their vote will win.
Finances, my sense is all three parties shot their load in the byelection and it's fact that no one has received back their return from the last run. Here is a possible PC edge, if all parties are struggling for cash, experienced fund raising will put the PCs in the best position. Liberals will be on their heels and the NDP is spread to thin to raise that cash.
Incumbency counts so that's an NDP plus, Sattler is also known from days as a trustee. The other two Bennett and Steinburg have to hit a lot of doorways to combat this.
This is the wild card - desire for change. London West is a slightly small c crowd. It's not an NDP bastion with heavy labour and London is not the Mecca of provincial government employees. Remember the NDP were fightin a five riding byelection, not a general election, this does not mean to discredit their win, but the question really is what was the message sent by voters to Queens park? It was a liberal seat so it ca be assumed it was a not happy with the status quo message but it could also have been a message to PC to behave more conservatively.
I believe in a general election London West most often sides with government. The last polls could still spell the outcome.
| ||14 05 26
|I believe Sattler has the edge in London West. Her by election and activity since has given her a much higher profile than the Lib or PC candidates. The lawn sign war is just gearing up, and Sattler had her stock ready to go when the other parties were still nominating candidates. With none of the parties running strong campaigns the status quo will rule.|
| ||14 05 25
|I predict the PCs will take this one, actually. Polling suggests he liberals are doing particularly badly in SW Ontario. In an area like London West, this is enough to cause me to think this will be a three-way race. However, I am not convinced that the NDP vote will be able to increase enough to surpass the PC vote, which be all accounts is at the very least stable in this area of Ontario.|
| ||14 05 13
|I think there are two opposing factors at play in this riding: (1) The NDP is not running a strong campaign so far, whereas the PCs have at least given people some major ideas to chew on; and (2) Peggy Sattler signs are everywhere, but I have yet to see a sign for any other candidate....aside from Al Gretzky! If the NDP campaign doesn't step up, then I think it will be a photo finish between NDP and PC here.|
| ||14 05 12
|Rather then too close to call, let's say this is too early to call. I'm of course hoping for a PC gain but two things concern me 1) Londoners don't do change well and Sattler is a familiar face, she had name recognition last time out as well. Lawn signs on personal property are popping up faster than dandelions as well. 2) to me the PC riding association is a mess. I haven't heard from anyone in the association since Bentley won for the first time, I am still waiting for my lawn sign for last years byelection - which I had to order. By comparison the federal cousins are on the ball. If you can't reach your base you won't reach past it. A new candidate again won't help. |
| ||14 05 11
|Aside from Windsor, due to the demographics, high number of public servants in this riding, and the Liberal collapse in southwestern Ontario, this is the most likely hold of the NDP's recent by-election wins.|
| ||14 05 10
|Recent polling has shown the NDP to be gaining strength in this part of Ontario.|
The by-election wins in Windsor-Tecumseh, Niagara Falls, Kitchener-Waterloo and here in London West should be repeated unless things radically change between now and election day.
| ||14 05 05
|This is either Too Close to Call, or a narrow PC victory. I'm calling PC for the reason that London West tends to be a bellwether riding, and the Tories have a good chance at forming government. The byelection here was a bit of a fluke (turnout was very low by this riding|
| ||14 05 03
|The edge goes to the NDP at this stage. The NDP has a solid quantity of electing well-known to high profile citizens lately in ridings demographics and recent history do not favour the party. Unless Horwath's numbers drop precipitously and concentrate too heavily in Toronto, Hamilton, Windsor, and northern Ontario Sattler should keep the seat. As of this writing, neither the Liberals nor the Tories have nominated a candidate. London-West is notorious for favouring either the incumbent government or going with the high-profile name. In the absence of either a Red or Blue big-name - London-West voters will stick with who they know. Only a major blue wave would likely dislodge Sattler or if there was the reality of a significant Liberal/NDP split of the vote (trends in this region suggest that is unlikely).|
| ||13 08 02
|The New Democrats comfortably won London West in the by-election and should be able to hold in during the general election albeit by a smaller margin. |
The Liberals vote collapsed in the by-election due to the unpopularity of candidate Ken Coran. I expect them to do better in the general election, but probably not enough to retain this seat.
| ||13 07 30
|I try not to call elections well in advance, and this is a hard one, much harder than making a clear call for Bentley in the past elections. Protest vote in an election that will not change the party in power and midsummer election time make forecasts even more difficult. I now call a narrow PC win in the riding in a by-election.|
Brown and Gretzky will not be significant here. Although the latter ran for the federal Tories in 2006 with a high vote share, that vote was for a party, not a candidate. The way election goes, he will not get much more than the 300 votes Hodge of his party took in 2011; this is a fringe force that will never win nor split a Tory vote (or anyone else's for that matter).
All three main parties are well organized and well advertised, but Liberal Ken Coran is a very long shot to win. Liberals had visible difficulties finding anyone to run for them this time, not a positive factor for them. Many of Bentley voters, I expect, will simply stay home this time, and Bentley support coalition of 2011 seems to be crumbling. Others of leftist leanings will vote for a more genuine NDP candidate who has no image of a 'turncoat', and looks more positive on posters. A small number of Bentley voters will also switch to the Tories. Besides, Coran started campaign by recording a very poorly done long message on the electors' phones, and has attractted a negative attention so that the Tory leader Hudak likes to single him out as a Liberal problem even in his Toronto rallies. Coran's vote will not decline completely, but it would be mostly an 'establishment Liberal' vote, from those who are unlikely to switch to anyone else. With the strong organization, it may remain significant, but getting just half of Bentley's 22,000 votes of 2011 will be around the upper limit of realistic prediction. A rather long shot to win, likely only third place...
No longer a two-way riding provincially, it suddenly gives a realistic opportunity to NDP's Sattler, depending on the turnout and on attracting a 'populist' support that NDP heavily relies on. A typical representative of educationist (with -ist-) mafia, connected to privileged Huron College leftist social science indoctrinators by family and professional ties (husband is a social science prof, and NEsbitt-Larking, well-known NDP cheerleader, also a strong supporter), she is likely to attract much of teachers' and unionist rank-and-file vote as an old defender of the unionist privileges and of never-to-be-fired established and well-pampered academic world of so called 'social science'. Official union leadership support for Coran, Thames Valley teachers and such (undoubtedly, to keep a voice in current government) is not likely to affect most rank-and-file leftist voters, but necessity to keep teachers' privileges and express protest against the government will be a powerful factor; it works for Sattler. She is likely to get ahead of Coran, and the recent polls, however not entirely reliable, seem to confirm this, as well as some momentum to the campaign.
Chahbar's support has been steady, and a province-wide Tory bounce should help him. He is the only one able to take a stance beating both parties with one argument, in particular, on pro-unions and anti-business stance of both key opponents. The other two have to fight in different directions, cannot afford only to fight Tories, and scramble for the support of voters who now have an even greater overlap than traditionally is the case with the Liberals and the NDP (in light of unionist background of both). Chahbar and the Hudak Tories have cleverly taken a stance against physiotherapy cuts by the Wynne government: however populist this might be, it solidifies Tory support among the group of likeliest voters they need most, the older electors. On top of that, the Tories are perceives as the one real alternative to the Liberals due to the Liberal-NDP budget of very recent memory. The only potential factor I see working against Chahbar is an ethnic/religious vote due to biases of some sections voting for the Tories (and others), but I do not expect this to be a major issue as he comes from a well-known and established London family (a relative Ab being a former London city councillor etc.) and there is much evidence of party voting beating ethnic voting in this riding, Muslim and other voters splitting along ideological and not ethnic lines. And Tory support is more stable and reliable than the NDP's (even in summer) in what looks increasingly as a two-way race. I think Chahbar will be first, but likely not by much, no Bentley margins can be expected this time. In fact, with possible exception of Doug Holiday in Etobicoke, he is the best Tory shot this time; if Tories do not take this riding, Hudak will be weakened as Tory leader much more than in case of loss in other places.
| ||13 07 05
|Remember what happened in Kitchener-Waterloo last September? A PC seat went to the NDP. Byelections are not general elections and voter behaviour is quite different. The teachers are going to flood this riding with volunteers to prevent either the PC or L from winning - the credibility of both the PC candidate(former Liberal) and Liberal candidate(former NDP) is already under heavy bombardment. Not unlike Catherine Fife in Kitchener-Waterloo - I expect Ms. Sattler to come up the middle and win. Coran doesn't stand a chance - the Forum poll says as much.|
| ||13 06 13
|A by election will be called here shortly. The Liberals have the best shot in taking this why ? because they will throw everything they got to take this riding. They'll bring their best talent to the campaigns ans will do what's necessary to win. Unlike the last time, NDP will not be a factor in this riding, since Andrea kept the Liberals in power. Kathleen'll campaign on her budget, while the NDP has nothing to campaign on. Expect the PC's to pick up some Liberal votes, expect the Liberals to pick up a very good chunk of NDP vote. The final tally: Liberal Landslide|
| ||13 05 02
|Home riding bias|
This may be the riding the PCs want most in the next election. A largely city (urban) riding is what they failed to take last time and the federal cousins have made lots of headway in London. However, it isn't a cake walk and I don't think any of the three parties can be counted out. (don't care about fringe they are just that).
I do think there is a slight edge to Chabar as a familiar family name in London, a decent middle eastern population and the loss of Bentley as a high profile cabinet minister all help this second time candidate.
Much depends on how much the Liberal candidate wears the party baggage and how bad the baggage stinks when an election comes along. I may be wrong but for a by-election in waiting riding it is odd the Libs haven't found a candidate yet.
London west is no rebel bastion, it's always one that looks for the best governing alternative. We as a riding would rather be in government than not.
If the Liberals sink far enough the NDP can take it if they look like they have a chance of winning the electoin or even forming a strong official opposition but if not, the PCs will gain here my assumption being the PCs will form a minority government and our riding wants to be IN government.
| ||13 03 15
|While the Toronto Star poll showed an extremely close 3-way race, realistically only the Liberals and PCs have a chance here - although the NDP can make some noise thanks to support in Old South and the Coves, residential areas like Byron and Oakridge make it just a little too suburban for them to pick up. The returning PC candidate seems fairly generic, although he'll have had essentially a two-year campaigning head-start. No matter who the Liberals nominate, this one will be too close to call right up until election night.|
| ||13 02 16
|The Liberals have won this riding with comfortable margins in the past three elections. This time, however, they're long shots mainly due to Chris Bentley's role in the cancellation of power plants and to a lesser extent the neighbouring riding's MPP in the ORNGE scandal. The way things look now, this should be a close contest between PC and NDP, either one could win with an outside shot for the Liberals.|
| ||13 02 19
|The Toronto Star released an article on how according to a Forum Research poll, the Liberals are not only in a dogfight to hold on to former London-West MPP Chris Bentley's spot, but are just two points ahead of the third place NDP, while Chahbar and the PC Party sit four points ahead of the Liberals. |
With PC candidate Ali Chahbar's local credentials, deep community involvement and apparent likability having been the subject of many news articles, 6 o'clock segments, radio interviews and a part of debates on television, Chahbar looks to be the one who can turn this riding blue after many years of Liberal scandal and mismanagement, as the Forum Research poll indicates.
| ||13 02 13
|According to the Toronto Star, Chris Bentley's old seat is in a three-way race (PC 34%, Libs 30%, NDP 28%). Too close to call for now.|