Manitoba NDP go on the attack

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PrairieDemocrat15
Manitoba NDP go on the attack

The NDP recently undertook a flyer campaign along with an accompanying attack web site: http://pallisterpcs.ca/

What are your thoughts? Is there any truth to the claim that Pallister support's two-tiered healthcare?

Risky Dix anyone?

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The Analyst The Analyst's picture

Doubt that expanding private service delivery in the Healthcare system would be Pallister's top priority. Do think there'd probably be some nasty cuts come governing time (or he'd have to run even bigger deficits to also revoke various Manitoba taxes he's railed against). Not sure if canceling the new Hydro line or just building it on the West side of Lake Winnipeg would be a move by his government.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

Main thought is that it's too late to matter...the Manitoba NDP is twenty-five freaking points down...that's probably an insurmountable deficit.  

genstrike

It's possible; stranger things have happened.  And I seem to recall that the polling showed the Manitoba NDP down (but not out) for most of the time leading up to the 2011 election.

But this is really bad for them.

I'm starting to wonder if the NDP is trying to lose this next election.

The PST increase was just plain stupid.  If they needed to raise revenue, there are better (more progressive) and less unpopular ways to do it than increasing the PST.  There's also been talk of raising MPI rates as of late, which is only going to make them less popular.

That's the other thing I find funny. There's a lot of progressive policies that the NDP could adopt, but shied away from.  Things like anti-scab legislation, universal post-secondary education, etc.  I often get told that these policies are too unpopular, and if the NDP were to adopt them, they would be defeated in 2015 (despite the fact that lowering tuition fees has a lot of public support).

But regressive taxation... that's going to be their hill to die on.

Aristotleded24

genstrike wrote:
The PST increase was just plain stupid.  If they needed to raise revenue, there are better (more progressive) and less unpopular ways to do it than increasing the PST.  There's also been talk of raising MPI rates as of late, which is only going to make them less popular.

That's the other thing I find funny. There's a lot of progressive policies that the NDP could adopt, but shied away from.  Things like anti-scab legislation, universal post-secondary education, etc.  I often get told that these policies are too unpopular, and if the NDP were to adopt them, they would be defeated in 2015 (despite the fact that lowering tuition fees has a lot of public support).

Sometimes there is a switch in public perception, and things that didn't matter before matter now, and I think in Manitoba's case the PST flipped that switch. For example the issue of STARS that's in the news is something the NDP could easily have survived a couple of years ago, but now it seems to be dragging them down and they can't shake it. It does seem as if the NDP brass is really out of touch with what is going on, and that has impacted them to the point that "safe" NDP seats in Dauphin and Brandon are now suddenly in play, which lowers the bar in Winnipeg that the PCs need to clear.

It's ironic that you mention MPI raises, as that is what brought down the previous NDP government.

I'd say the election is Pallister's to lose, although with is "infidel atheists" remakr and non-apology, I really question his judgement and he may just yet hand the NDP another victory. However that sorts itself out, I predict that the next election will be a competition primarily between the hardcore supporters of each party, it will be a nasty tone, and the general public will basically tune out not noticing or caring that an election is happening.

genstrike

The "infidel atheists" remark was a total non-issue and will be forgotten by all but a handful of people come election time.  Maybe Pallister will screw up hard enough to hand the NDP a victory, but I doubt it.  He's an experienced politician, and probably astute enough to avoid too many major gaffes.  Still, you never know with the incompetence of the Manitoba PCs.

On the other hand, the NDP brass must be completely out to lunch if they thought that the PST increase would be well-received.  The "We smoked them out" comments from Liam Martin regarding the PST have to be one of the most tone-deaf things I've heard in Manitoba politics in a long time.

But the thing that really gets my goat about the PST increase is that for years, progressives and lefties have been told by NDP types that, hey, we agree with you, but you need to be patient and not press issues like 50%+1 card check, anti-scab legislation, lower tuition fees, raising welfare rates, etc. because they don't have enough public support, and if we press the issue, the Winnipeg Sun will have a field day and we'll only be playing into the hands of the barbarians at the gates.  And anyone who thinks the NDP should do any of these progressive things is actually hurting any progressive agenda because calling on the NDP to do any of those things is the sort of overreaching that will cause a backlash that will doom the NDP in the next election, and ensuring the election of a government that will reverse any little good thing the NDP has ever done and more.

Then, the NDP decides to press on ahead with their bold progressive ideas of... raising the PST, one of the more regressive, visible, and unpopular taxes there is?  Though I must admit, the PC's complaint that hard-working Manitoba families will have to pay $200 more on a $20,000 boat is not exactly helping their case a whole lot, raising the PST is one of the least progressive and least popular ways to raise revenue there is.  I get that governments need revenue to provide public services, but there are better ways to raise that revenue than with sales taxes.

But, not a far-reaching social program like Mincome or universal PSE, not some vast improvement in labour rights like anti-scab, they chose regressive sales taxes as their hill to die on.

Let me illustrate with an example.  The Saskatchewan CCF, battered and bloodied, may have lost the 1964 election, but they brought in universal healthcare.  The Manitoba NDP is going to lose the 2015 election over a 1% PST increase.  Huh?  Is this what passes for a vision for a better society in Today's NDP?

Aristotleded24

Yeah, and the problem with the "spending announcements" is that the NDP is reminding voters that they broke their promise not to raise taxes. And from an ethical standpoint, I don't see why it's okay for the NDP to break its promise to not raise taxes but it was wrong for the PCs to break their promise to not sell MTS. It either is okay to break your promises or it is not.

The Analyst The Analyst's picture

genstrike wrote:

The "infidel atheists" remark was a total non-issue and will be forgotten by all but a handful of people come election time.  Maybe Pallister will screw up hard enough to hand the NDP a victory, but I doubt it.  He's an experienced politician, and probably astute enough to avoid too many major gaffes.  Still, you never know with the incompetence of the Manitoba PCs.

I'm very curious if Liberals will manage to slide up the middle in some ridings, given an increasingly depised (and very long term) NDP and a gaffe-tastic, old guard politician with reactionary social views leads the Official Opposition. Rana Bokhari is a fresh face for the Manitoba Liberals, which don't have the baggage or negative image (now that Gerrard is out of the spotlight and Lamoreaux is in Ottaw). A very vapid, "feel good" positive campaign really could work if the Pallister CONs and NDP keep up with the heavy barbs and gaffes in the Legislature.

 

I imagine, for instance, that some south-central and inner suburban ridings could go to the Libs.

Aristotleded24

genstrike wrote:
The "infidel atheists" remark was a total non-issue and will be forgotten by all but a handful of people come election time.  Maybe Pallister will screw up hard enough to hand the NDP a victory, but I doubt it.  He's an experienced politician, and probably astute enough to avoid too many major gaffes.  Still, you never know with the incompetence of the Manitoba PCs.

I didn't bring up the "infidel atheists" remark as something in and of itself that would hurt Pallister, moreso that I think that episode reflects quite poorly on his judgement overall.

The Analyst The Analyst's picture

Aristotleded24 wrote:

genstrike wrote:
The "infidel atheists" remark was a total non-issue and will be forgotten by all but a handful of people come election time.  Maybe Pallister will screw up hard enough to hand the NDP a victory, but I doubt it.  He's an experienced politician, and probably astute enough to avoid too many major gaffes.  Still, you never know with the incompetence of the Manitoba PCs.

I didn't bring up the "infidel atheists" remark as something in and of itself that would hurt Pallister, moreso that I think that episode reflects quite poorly on his judgement overall.

 

Yeah, individual boneheaded remarks about a "fickle" "woman's answer", those "infidel atheists", or dangerous "social experiments" by themselves don't drown you. Making them again and again do, however.

genstrike

The Analyst wrote:
Rana Bokhari is a fresh face for the Manitoba Liberals, which don't have the baggage or negative image (now that Gerrard is out of the spotlight and Lamoreaux is in Ottaw).

Rana who?  She may be a fresh face, but she's not very well known and doesn't seem to be getting in the media that much.

As for baggage and negative image, I'm not familiar with any serious baggage that Gerrard is carrying.  He's a bit of a sad and lonely figure, but he seems to be fairly well-respected and he didn't fire nurses, privatize MTS, or raise the PST.

Aristotleded24

genstrike wrote:
The Analyst wrote:
Rana Bokhari is a fresh face for the Manitoba Liberals, which don't have the baggage or negative image (now that Gerrard is out of the spotlight and Lamoreaux is in Ottaw).

Rana who?  She may be a fresh face, but she's not very well known and doesn't seem to be getting in the media that much.

As for baggage and negative image, I'm not familiar with any serious baggage that Gerrard is carrying.  He's a bit of a sad and lonely figure, but he seems to be fairly well-respected and he didn't fire nurses, privatize MTS, or raise the PST.

Part of the problem rests with the fact that Gerrard is not only sticking around to serve out his term, but he's announced intentions to run again, so he still is the de facto Liberal leader in Manitoba. It's only natural that Gerrard would be primarily asked questions and have profile in this situation. I would think that the loyal thing to do for his party would be to step aside, walk with Rana through the streets of Riverheights and get her elected. That way, she can cement herself as a presence in the Ledge, she is on much more solid ground to go out and build up the Liberal party brand elsewhere, and then not only are she and Gerrard well-positioned to be in the Ledge after the next vote, but they have a good chance of bringing many more MLAs with them.

The Analyst The Analyst's picture

genstrike wrote:

As for baggage and negative image, I'm not familiar with any serious baggage that Gerrard is carrying.  He's a bit of a sad and lonely figure, but he seems to be fairly well-respected and he didn't fire nurses, privatize MTS, or raise the PST.

 

If the Liberals want to run a positive, if vapid, campaign to slide up the middle than having an attack dog as your public face is a negative image. The positive, feel good strategy is probably the best one for the Libs at this point and the highly critical Gerald won't make a positive impression.

jas

genstrike wrote:

He's a bit of a sad and lonely figure, but he seems to be fairly well-respected and he didn't fire nurses, privatize MTS, or raise the PST.

He didn't get the chance to.

I still say some of the Manitoba Liberals would be better off in civic politics. I remember both Gerrard and Paul Hesse offering some great ideas and visions for Winnipeg in the last couple of elections.

Aristotleded24

I'll also say that with the issues we're having around STARS, Selby's deflection of the questions in bringing up the baby deaths in Winnipeg that happened when the PCs were in government was completely unacceptable.

Centrist

Aristotleded24 wrote:
Yeah, and the problem with the "spending announcements" is that the NDP is reminding voters that they broke their promise not to raise taxes.

What I don`t get is why the Manitoba NDP raised the PST - a consumption tax affecting all consumers. Why didn`t the Manitoba NDP just raise corporate taxes instead? Wouldn`t have been the same political backlash -  if any at all.

Besides - the Manitoba corporate tax rate is effectively the same as the right-wing BC Lib`s low corporate tax rate with a lot of maneuvering room for upward movement (considering that the same Manitoba NDP consistently lowered same to BC`s level over the past decade). Heck, even the BC NDP acknowledges the need to raise BC`s low corporate tax rate to increase revenues. 

jas

Aristotleded24 wrote:

I'll also say that with the issues we're having around STARS  

Was just reading about that. Incomprehensible. Manitoba politicians really seem to like their helicopters.

PrairieDemocrat15

I agree raising the PST was a terrible move, from a political and policy standpoint. It seems the NDP is headed for defeat in 2016 and its sad that this is what will do them in (though, I think breaking the 2011 election promise not to raise taxes did more damage than actually rasing the PST and repealing the referendum requirement).

On the bright side, the government has done or proposed some more progessive measures, recently, such as increasing welfare funding and services in the latest budget, and moving to regulate temp agencies.

Finally, the most recent Probe poll has the NDP slightly up and the PCs slightly down (28-46 I believe). More importanly, the two parties are almost tied in Winnipeg, with the NDP leading in several quadrants of the city. The PC vote is so inefficent, I think its possible the NDP could win with substantially fewer total votes than the PCs.

Aristotleded24

[url=http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/local/War-chests-and-troops-on-the-grou... Pallister beat the NDP at its own game?[/url]

Quote:
Since 2008, the Tories have consistently out-fundraised the NDP. In the year before the last election, the Progressive Conservatives raised nearly twice the money the NDP did. Now, by nearly every measure, that fundraising gap is entrenched, according to an analysis of the last two years of political donations made in Manitoba.

...

But, in 2011, the Tories’ fat bank account helped them little in the election. The party increased its popular vote, but failed to win one single extra seat, a testament to the efficiency of the NDP’s vote and the ruling party’s local organizing strength.

...

In an effort to revamp anemic riding associations, the PC’s set out four criteria each association must meet before headquarters will allow a nomination meeting to be held. The NDP has similar criteria, but the new Tory rules are tougher.

Each PC riding association must have $15,000 in the bank, at least 2,000 identified supporters, 100 volunteers and ten committed, experienced door-knockers willing to act as a go-anywhere swat team during the election.

Ideally, all riding associations will hit those marks, but the Tories is particularly focused on ridings where they hope to defeat an NDP incumbent.

Already, three ridings have met the test — Riel, Gimli and Rossmere — and several more are close enough that Pallister expects another round of nominations in a few months.