The Weekly Writ for Feb. 15
What's next for Toronto; UCP solidifies its base; and a first for Nunavut.
Welcome to the Weekly Writ, a round-up of the latest federal and provincial polls, election news and political history that lands in your inbox every Wednesday morning.
What began as a relatively light electoral year is quickly starting to fill up.
The centre-piece campaign of 2023 still looks likely to be Alberta in the spring, with Manitoba and Prince Edward Island providing some interest in the fall. But the resignation of John Tory (more on that later) means Canada’s biggest city will also have an election campaign at some point this year.
Due to four federal vacancies we have the potential for a moderately-sized byelection night, while provincial byelections are already on tap in British Columbia, Ontario, Saskatchewan, Quebec and New Brunswick, with some particularly intriguing races in the last three.
Perhaps it is a sad admission to make, but I generally think of time in terms of elections, with federal campaigns being important bookends and provincial campaigns being ways I focus each year. I plan my vacations around them.
I’m not alone in that. Political journalists do the same, though I’m in small company in that I keep my eye on elections throughout the country. Politicians also have to organize their thinking around elections, even those not within their jurisdictions. Jagmeet Singh, for example, has to keep in mind the schedules of his fellow-travelers in Alberta and Manitoba when he makes his own political calculations.
And it isn’t just in terms of strategy — it’s human resources, too. Canada’s political class is pretty small. This isn’t the United States where the omnipresence of elections means there are plenty of opportunities to make the business of political campaigning a full-time job for a lot of people. There are only so many staffers, strategists, volunteers and donors to go around. The electoral calendar has to be managed and taken into consideration by everyone in or adjacent to political circles.
It’s one of the reasons the unexpected election in Toronto will have impacts that we might not yet be aware of.
Now, to what is in this week’s instalment of the Weekly Writ:
News out of Toronto and why the mayoral election is likely to be very competitive, plus a new seat vacancy in British Columbia
Polls show some changes in federal voting intentions in Canada’s largest city, while the UCP improves its position in Alberta and the provincial NDP continues to dominate B.C.
A few small shifts here and there if the election were held today
We visit Edmonton’s donut in this week’s riding profile
A first (ever) for Nunavut in the #EveryElectionProject
Let’s get to it!