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Ten ridings to watch: Winnipeg North, where the NDP want back in

Election 2011: rabble.ca has chosen 10 key ridings across Canada for progressives to watch in the run-up to the May 2 vote, and asked local writers to assess them. The profiles highlight why the riding is important and issues local campaigns are focused on.

Winnipeg North is one of the hottest seats in Canada right now, with the NDP gunning hard to win back a traditionally NDP seat.

When Judy Wasylycia-Leis stepped down as an MP to take on Winnipeg's pro-business mayor, Sam Katz, the NDP dropped the ball with rookie Kevin Chief -- widely expected to win in the byelection of March 2009. The seat went instead to seasoned Liberal candidate Kevin Lamoureux, by a 900-vote margin, dropping the federal NDP from 37 to 36 seats.

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Election 2011: Harper's attack on the Canadian Arab and Muslim community

During the Israeli attack on Lebanon in 2006 -- and in the five years since -- Stephen Harper has strongly defended Israel's policies even when other allies like the United States and Britain have made the occasional criticism of Israeli policy or called for compromise between the Israelis and Palestinians. This virtually unqualified support from the Harper government for Israel runs contrary to the view held by the vast majority of the world community.

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Ten ridings to watch: NDP breakers in Edmonton-Strathcona

Election 2011: rabble.ca has chosen 10 key ridings across Canada for progressives to watch in the run-up to the May 2 vote, and asked local writers to assess them. The profiles highlight why the riding profiled is important and issues local campaigns are focused upon.

In Alberta this week, all roads lead to Edmonton-Strathcona.

Down those roads, metaphorically speaking, flow the three Ms of Canadian politics: Mail, Money and Manpower.

This is because the folks who live along the still-snowy streets of the riding -- which may soon be leafy and green as what Lucy Maud Montgomery called "the beautiful, capricious, reluctant Canadian spring" finally comes to Alberta -- are represented by a New Democrat!

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Ten ridings to watch: Apathy and the mysterious incumbent of Calgary East

Election 2011: rabble.ca has chosen 10 key ridings across Canada for progressives to watch in the run-up to the May 2 vote, and asked local writers to assess them. The profiles highlight why the riding profiled is important and issues local campaigns are focused upon.

Conservative MP Deepak Obhrai once declared to a room full of journalism students at the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (SAIT) that no election is ever foretold. Participating in a town hall forum focused on combating voter apathy, Obhrai was one of 16 local candidates from across the political spectrum urging young voters to help shape the future of their country by casting a ballot in the upcoming federal election.

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Jack Layton's excellent adventure

Jack Layton's excellent adventure: The election is now an historic opportunity for progressive Canadians and for the social movements to take a place in the mainstream of our politics. Photo: Matt Jiggins/Flickr
The election is now an historic opportunity for progressive Canadians and for the social movements to take a place in the mainstream of our politics.

Related rabble.ca story:

Apathy is Boring

Apathy is Boring aims to use art, and technology to educate Canadian youth about democracy.

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| April 25, 2011
Columnists

Ideas to create a more engaged electorate

The flurry of polls last week [See here and here] suggesting an unprecedented surge in support for the NDP has stunned political commentators and given progressives something to cheer about for the first time in ages. Paradoxically, it comes at a time in the election when it seemed that no matter how many sleazy scandals hit the Conservatives they stayed right on the edge of majority territory.

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Food is an election issue

Photo: Nick in exsilio/Flickr
The People's Food Policy is encouraging voters to attend debates and ask candidates questions about the close to 2.5 million Canadians who are regularly concerned about having enough food to eat.

Related rabble.ca story:

It's strategic voting -- or Harper!

It all comes down to that age-old question: Does the end justify the means?

Right now, many Canadians are torn between their strong desire to nullify Stephen Harper's corrupt, anti-democratic rule -- and their own party loyalty.

But, with polls predicting at least another Harper minority -- given our distorting first-past-the-post system -- more and more are turning to the concept of strategic voting.

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