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New election projection for CPC in Lethbridge lowest level in decades

But vote splitting by the Liberals and the NDP means it probably won’t matter.

Earlier this week, 338Canada—an poll analysis and electoral projection website—updated their federal seat projections for Alberta.

Unsurprisingly, most of the 34 seats are coming up pretty blue: forecasting 33 seats going to the Conservative Party of Canada and 1 going to the NDP.

Current projections mirror the existing makeup in the House of Commons. The one NDP seat is Edmonton–Strathcona, which is held by NDP MP Heather McPherson. All other seats are held by CPC MPs.

338Canada has most of the 33 CPC seats (22) listed as “safe”, so it’s unlikely voters there will will pick an MP from a different party in the next election.

But there are 11 seats labelled as either likely or leaning, which means they potentially could see some changes there:

Leaning

  • Calgary Centre
  • Calgary Confederation
  • Calgary Skyview
  • Edmonton Centre
  • Edmonton Griesbach
  • Edmonton Manning
  • Edmonton Mill Woods
  • Edmonton Riverbend

Likely

  • Calgary Forest Lawn
  • Edmonton West
  • St. Albert–Edmonton

The first thing I noticed is that all these seats are in Edmonton and Calgary. In fact, only one Edmonton riding—Edmonton–Wetaskiwin—is listed as “CPC safe”. This isn’t that surprising, since these are the same cities where 338Canada projects the UCP losing seats in the next provincial election.

All but one of these 11 ridings are new ridings, created during the Conservative Party’s last term.

Let’s look at them in a bit more detail.

Calgary Centre

Calgary Centre is currently held by CPC MP Greg Mclean, who has held it only since the 2019 election, when he won it with 56.6% of the vote. This riding has been held by a conservative MP since at least the 1960s, except between 2015 and 2019, when it was held by Kent Hehr, a Liberal MP and former minister in the portfolios of Veterans Affairs and sport and persons with disabilities.

338Canada has CPC leading with 44.7% of the vote, the Liberals coming in second place at 36.4%. Their projection models have had the Liberals leading in the riding only twice over the last year. That being said, the margin of error between the two party projections has significant overlap between the two parties.

They have the odds of winning for the CPC at 88% and the Liberals at 12%.

Calgary Confederation

Calgary Confederation is currently held by CPC MP Len Webber, who has held it since the 2015 election, when he won it with 56.6% of the vote. It is a new riding, and Webber is the only MP to hold this riding.

338Canada has CPC leading with 40.3% of the vote, the Liberals coming in second place at 34.4%. Their projection models have had the CPC leading in this riding with every one of their updates over the last year. Currently, the margin of error between the two party projections has significant overlap between the two parties.

They have the odds of winning for the CPC at 82% and the Liberals at 18%.

Calgary Forest Lawn

Calgary Forest Lawn is currently held by CPC MP Jasraj Hallan, who has held it only since the 2019 election, when he won it with 59.6% of the vote. It is a new riding, and Hallan is only the second MP to hold this riding, which has been held by only CPC MPs

338Canada has CPC leading with 43.5% of the vote, the Liberals coming in second place at 33.1%. Their projection models have had the CPC leading in this riding with every one of their updates over the last year. Currently, the margin of error between the two party projections has significant overlap between the two parties.

That being said, they have the odds of winning for the CPC at 93% and the Liberals at 7%.

Calgary Skyview

Calgary Skyview is currently held by CPC MP Jagdeep Sahota, who has held it only since the 2019 election, when he won it with 52.5% of the vote. Prior to that, it was held by Darshan Kang, a Liberal MP who was elected in 2015.

338Canada has CPC leading in this riding with 40% of the vote, the Liberals coming in second place at 35.7%. Their projection models have had the Liberals leading in the riding only 9 times over the last year. That being said, the margin of error between the two party projections has significant overlap between the two parties.

They have the odds of winning for the CPC at 73% and the Liberals at 27%.

Edmonton Centre

Edmonton Centre is currently held by CPC MP James Cumming, who has held it only since the 2019 election, when he won it with 41.4% of the vote. This riding has waffled between Liberals and CPC MPs, starting with Anne McLellan (Lib.) in 2004, then Lauri Hawn (CPC) in 2006, Randy Boissonnault (Lib.) in 2015, and finally Cumming.

338Canada has CPC leading in this riding with 36.8% of the vote, the Liberals coming in second place at 33.2%. The NDP are at 26.4%. Their projection models have had the Liberals leading in the riding 28 times over the last year. The margin of error between the two party projections has significant overlap between the two parties.

While they have the odds of winning for the CPC at 71% and the Liberals at 27%, clearly the CPC could lose this riding.

Edmonton Griesbach

Edmonton Griesbach is currently held by CPC MP Kerry Diotte, who has held it only since the 2015 election, when he won it with 39.9% of the vote. He has been the only MP elected to the riding since its creation before the 2015 election. He received 51.4% of the vote in the 2019 federal election.

338Canada has CPC leading in this riding with 38.1% of the vote, the NDP coming in second place at 32.5%. The Liberals are at 24.9%. Their projection models have had the NDP leading in the riding just once over the last year. The margin of error between the two party projections has significant overlap between the two parties, sometimes also including the Liberals’ margin of error.

While they have the odds of winning for the CPC at 78% and the NDP at 21%, clearly the CPC could lose this riding.

Edmonton Manning

Edmonton Manning is currently held by CPC MP Ziad Aboultaif, who has held it only since the 2015 election, when he won it with 45.24% of the vote. He has been the only MP elected to the riding since its creation before the 2015 election. He received 55.9% of the vote in the 2019 federal election.

338Canada has CPC leading in this riding with 39.7% of the vote, the Liberals coming in second place at 31.8%. The NDP are at 24.8%. Their projection models have had the CPC leading in the riding with every update over the last year. The margin of error between the two party projections has significant overlap between the two parties, occasionally also including the NDP’s margin of error.

They have the odds of winning for the CPC at 88% and the Liberals at 11%.

Edmonton Mill Woods

Edmonton Mill Woods is currently held by CPC MP Tim Uppal, who has held it only since the 2019 election, when he won it with 50.3% of the vote. He is one of only 2 MPs elected to the riding since its creation before the 2015 election, the other being Liberal MP Amarjeet Sohi. Uppal ran in the 2015 election as well, which he lost, and received 41.06% of the vote to Sohi’s 41.24%.

338Canada has CPC leading in this riding with 42.6% of the vote, the Liberals coming in second place at 37.4%. Their projection models have had the Liberals leading or tied in the riding 19 times over the last year. The margin of error between the two party projections has significant overlap between the two parties, occasionally also including the NDP’s margin of error. However, starting in November, the CPC started widening the gap between the two parties and has maintained a 5–7 point lead for the last two months.

338Canada has the odds of winning for the CPC at 77% and the Liberals at 23%.

Edmonton Riverbend

Edmonton Riverbend is currently held by CPC MP Matt Jeneroux, who has held it only since the 2015 election, when he won it with 49.9% of the vote. He is the only MP elected to the riding since its creation before the 2015 election. He won the 2019 election with 57.4%.

338Canada has CPC leading in this riding with 40.8% of the vote, the Liberals coming in second place at 34.2%. The NDP are at 21.2%. Their projection models have had the CP leading in the riding with every update over the last year. The margin of error between the two party projections has significant overlap between the two parties, occasionally also including the NDP’s margin of error.

338Canada has the odds of winning for the CPC at 84% and the Liberals at 16%.

Edmonton West

Edmonton West is currently held by CPC MP Kelly Mccauley, who has held it only since the 2015 election, when he won it with 49.3% of the vote. He is the only MP elected to the riding since its creation before the 2015 election. He won the 2019 election with 60.9%.

338Canada has CPC leading in this riding with 43.7% of the vote, the Liberals coming in second place at 30.2%. The NDP are at 22%. Their projection models have had the CP leading in the riding with every update over the last year. The margin of error between the two party projections has occasional overlap between the two parties.

338Canada has the odds of winning for the CPC at 98% and the Liberals at 2%. The chances are pretty low that the CPC will lose this riding.

St. Albert–Edmonton

St. Albert–Edmonton is currently held by CPC MP Michael Cooper, who has held it only since the 2015 election, when he won it with 45.24% of the vote. He is the only MP elected to the riding since its creation before the 2015 election. He won the 2019 election with 60.7%.

338Canada has CPC leading in this riding with 43.7% of the vote, the Liberals coming in second place at 28.9%. The NDP are at 23.4%. Their projection models have had the CP leading in the riding with every update over the last year. The margin of error between the two party projections has occasional overlap between the two parties.

338Canada has the odds of winning for the CPC at greater than 99%. The chances are pretty low that the CPC will lose this riding.

Bonus: Lethbridge

Since Lethbridge is my home riding and I’m writing this news story, I’m taking liberty to include it here.

Lethbridge is an enigma. For decades, voters here have voted for a right-leaning MP. Yet, since 1993, at least 1 of the 2 provincial ridings has had a non-conservative MLA, and in 2015, voters in both provincial ridings selected NDP MLAs.

Since the 2006 federal election, the NDP candidate running in Lethbridge has always displaced the Liberal candidate for second place.

The current MP is Rachael Harder (CPC), who was elected in 2015, after the previous incumbent, Jim Hillyer ran in the new Medicine Hat—Cardston—Warner riding. She won with 56.76% of the vote. In the 2019 election, she increased that to 65.8%.

With this week’s update, 338Canada shows the CPC leading the Lethbridge riding with 48.5% of the vote. If an election were held to day and Harder received that many votes, it would be the lowest showing for a right-leaning candidate in this riding since 1968.

338Canada projects the NDP winning 25.5% of the popular vote, with the Liberals close behind at 20.7%. A year ago, they projected CPC taking the riding at nearly 62% of the vote, but that number dropped over the next 5–6 months, and has remained below 50% ever since last summer.

Despite the CPC losing such confidence in the projections, the NDP come nowhere close to eroding support away from Harder, even when we account for margins of error.

Over the last year, the Liberal projections have been nipping at the heels of the NDP’s, even surpassing them briefly, albeit barely. In the latest update, the NDP and Liberals have a combined popular vote projection of 46.2%, putting them within striking distance of taking the conservative seat for the first time in decades.

For the CPC to lose this seat, however, one of two things must happen (or both things together). Either the CPC loses even more support in Lethbridge, which seems unlikely with scandal-free and generally-likeable Harder, or progressive voters rally behind a single party, rather than continually splitting the left vote here.

And considering that 338Canada shows the CPC’s odds of winning this riding at greater than 99%, neither may happen by the next election, which could be as early as this June.

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By Kim Siever

I live in Lethbridge with my spouse and 4 of our 6 children. I’m a writer, focusing on political news, social issues, and the occasional poem. My politics are radically left.

I’m also dichotomally Mormon. And I’m a functional vegetarian: I have a blog post about that somewhere around here. My pronouns are he/him, and I’m queer.

3 replies on “New election projection for CPC in Lethbridge lowest level in decades”

I always felt like Lethbridge ought to be more progressive. Unfortunately the geopolitical influences seem to be overwhelming and the Phoenix will not rise. It has come a long way, but there is a long road ahead. Keep up the good work Kim.

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