It’s a Conservative Minority

01.23.06

The official results are more or less in: It’s a minority government for Stephen Harper’s Conservatives, albeit a shaky one.

The real questions are, what now? Will Harper be able to govern? Will the NDP and the Tories combine for 155, or will they just miss? Will Harper work with Duceppe? How long can this crazy mess possibly last?

The good news:

  • The Bloc lost both popular vote and seats in Quebec. They can spin all they want, but this was a big blow to them, and is good news in the leadup to the next provincial election and sovereignty referendum.
  • Paul Martin is finished as Liberal leader. The party will now be jolted out of corruption and complacency, and will have to reorganize and revitalize itself in preparation for the future.
  • The Tories have a win but not necessarily a mandate. Their small minority will not allow them to do all the scary things that the Liberals accused them of wanting to do (and that they probably didn’t want to do in the first place).
  • Svend Robinson was defeated in Vancouver. Whew.

The bad news:

  • The Bloc Quebecois lost seats but gained power. They’ll now hold the balance of power in government, and they can exact a steep price to keep Harper’s government alive.
  • Minority government or not, Stephen Harper is now the Prime Minister of Canada. He has made a number of promises that I’m extremely uncomfortable with, and I suspect, many Canadians are too. (The silver lining here is that politicians are very good at breaking promises).
  • Had the Conservatives lost, Stephen Harper would surely have been forced out and the party might have had a chance to elect a more moderate, centrist leader and move to the left. Instead, Harper will keep his job and the Tories will remain socially conservative. Depending on your take on the situation, this is either good or bad. Regular readers here ought to understand how I feel about that one.
  • If you’re gay and planning to get married, you might want to move that date up a bit.

And yes, for posterity’s sake, I’ll say it again: I was wrong in my prediction of no gains for the Tories in Quebec.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

1 DaninVan 01.24.06 at 7:08 AM

The bad news about Svend is that the constituents get Hedy Fry instead *drum roll* …in opposition
heheheh

You won’t hear me whining about being ignored by Ottawa anymore; my fellow B.C.ers chose this concoction we elected tonight, now we’ll just have to live with it. They had their chance but just couldn’t read the writing on the wall.

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2 Tré 01.24.06 at 2:26 PM

Though an NDPer, not sad to see Robinson lose. Met him once, and can’t stand the guy.

As for the conservatives, it seems pretty clear that they have a partial green light one the economic side but that they’ll have to keep their mouths shut on the social issues. Wonder if Harper will be able to keep his evangelical wingnuts hidden, or at least quiet, long enough to get another mandate.

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3 segacs 01.24.06 at 3:48 PM

This is an historic moment: I actually agree with Tré on this one.

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4 cliff from montreal 01.24.06 at 7:20 PM

Wow, this is amazing..I agree with her too 🙂

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