Sunday, September 28, 2008

Haldimand "Federal Election 2008 A Bit of History"

I spent a few hours doing some research on the Parliament of Canada Website. For anyone that is interested this is an excellent site if you want to look up the history of where you live. Here is the link; Parliament of Canada Website;

There are 308 Members of Parliament. Here is the current standing of MP’s, Conservatives (127), Liberals (95), NDP (30), Independents (4), BQ (48), Vacancies (4).

In the 2006 Federal Election Diane Finley won her second term in Haldimand/Norfolk. Here are the results of the last election; Conservatives (25,885) Liberals (18,363) NDP (6,858) Green Party (1,894) Christian Heritage Party (559). 53,754 people voted in 2006, that is approx. 66% of the eligible voters.

Since 1867 only two parties have won a Federal Election in Haldimand, Conservatives (27 elections) Liberals (15 elections). Interestingly there were a few by-elections, as a few elections were deemed invalid.

There are 65 Independents running across Canada according to Elections Canada. In Haldimand County we have (1) Independent running. This is the second Independent that has run in a Federal Election in Haldimand’s history. In 1984 Martin Weber ran as an Independent. Here are the results of that election; PC (27,296). Lib (12,161). NDP (6,138). Independent (656).

Looking at the results of the last few elections the NDP, the Green Party and the Christian Heritage Party have been very consistent with their numbers in Haldimand/Norfolk. What is interesting in the mix this election is we have an Independent running. How will that effect the votes? Is it possible for an Independent to win?

So where am I going with this you ask? Well I do have a few questions, and I welcome anyone who has some good answers. I would also like to hear your predictions and concerns.

Here are a few questions;

Are we better off with a Majority Government or a Minority Government?

There are 65 Independents currently running in the Federal Election. What would happen if a large number of Independents win?

Would we have been better off with "One Ballot, Two Votes?"

Should we vote for a party platform or the individual that will speak on our behalf?

Do you trust the Polls?


  1. Donna thanks for the history. I only have one prediction and it is that Gary McHale will loose this election. Haldimand has always been very heavy conservatives, for an Independent to win they would have to be someone of very high standings in the community, and that is not McHale! In the Dunnville area most people don't know much about him, and the few that do, have no time for him.

  2. Thanks also for the column on "Why I Should Vote".
    Since H-N is such a conservative riding, it is supporting fiscally conservative candidates. Stephana Johnston is building momentum as she meets her constituents at the Dunnville Farmers' Mkt, the Caledonia Fair, the Simcoe and Port Dover Farmers' Mkts, on coffee shops and supermarkets.

  3. Like her or not it has to be Diane Friendly opps Finly ,Harpers going to win and we need to be on the government side ie cabinet.And maybe our new communications officer at a 100 thousand plus can work with her instead of this pro Liberal council.I am not a fan of Finly, but I will hold my noise and vote for her.

  4. (1) We need a Majority Government!

    (2) That would be a disaster! I would never vote for an Independent. There is no purpose in that decision. We have plenty of residents that are vocal enough that have made their marks.

    (3) Maybe.

    (4) Party Platform.

    (5) No.

  5. I had the opportunity to meet Stephana. She is very down to earth, knowledgeable and she has my vote. She seems to be the most honest of the bunch.

  6. Gary McHale was at Toby Barretts BBQ on Saturday and I want to say that I would not vote for that man. Where does he get off campaigning at a function that had nothing to do with him. It is always about him. I didn't see Hoskins, Elgersma, Nicholls or Johnston there, well it goes to show you that some people just don't understand how things work. He will probably report that the people of Dunnville are now votinf for him as they welcomed him and listenened to him, just as he professes that the Mayor is supporting him when she is supporting Finley. There are many people that will listen to someone and not be rude, but when it comes to the polls they remember not to vote for that person they thought had a lot of nerve.

  7. I believe Donna that these questions only touch the tip of the iceberg. Voters need to look at the issues, study the policies of all parties and independents, then vote for what they want.Then in between elections watch what happens and how the parties and independents follow their own policies. We need informed voters, and watchers between elections, and voters here are very watchful. Look at the economy, which party had a surplus, deficit, who got tax breaks, who didn't... we need to pay attention between elections!So I guess to me the party platform is most important when I decide to vote. NO voter can control whether the country is a majority or minority so this issue being beyond my control is of no interest to me. Strategic voting is dumb, because the voters aren't!!Donna maybe it would be of interest to study the independents and why they do not run for a party. Is it the party elite or is it the character of the individual that prevents the party from electing that candidate? The party choice is always voted by way, way way, less than 1% of the voters in HN. Voters need to know who and how a candidate is chosen, and whether being local (whatever that means) is important? Getting involved at the party level, will help you understand where and how the candidates in HN have been picked, or became independents, and why persons run here and not where they live. Love your blog, it is about HN, and fair and non-partisan.

  8. Thanks everyone for your comments. You make my blog! I always look forward to the thoughts and advice that you give.

    I for one do pay attention to the issues and vote accordingly. It is hard to know it all! As one stated these questions only touch the tip of the iceberg.

    I will stand behind my theory that an informed voter is the best voter.

    I believe in Haldimand we are facing a few issues that other communities are not. So in saying this I do believe that this election seems to have more "emotional voters" than usual.

    My hope is that we can reach a 70% voting rate in Haldimand and send a strong message to our leaders.

  9. I think people should think long and hard about voting for an Independent as they usually cross the floor. If there were a huge number of Independents voted in and they formed part of a minority they would need to cross the floor as they come empty handed.

    Gary McHale for those that do not know his background is a Conservative at heart. If he were elected in Haldimand Norfolk he would want to cross the floor but where would he go? Who would want him? Would Harper ask him to join the Conservatives?

    A vote for this Independent is a waste of a vote. A vote for this Independent is only going to split the votes between the Liberals and the Conservatives.

  10. A vote for Gary McHale is an absolute waste of a vote. He said at the debate in Kohler that he had been in court that morning laying more charges, this time he laid charges on the HDI. Will he never stop his nonsense. Is this what we need in an MP? People give your head a shake. He is a cult leader, with his few followers. It is funny that the people that follow him after a while it wears off then he attacks them, or threatens to sue them. Again is this what we want as an MP?

  11. On Thursday, October 2, 2008, I went to the All Candidates Debate in Dunnville. I would like to take a minute to give my impressions of the candidates.

    The Conservative Party candidate, Diane Finley, was not in attendance. I think this sums up exactly what she stands for. The comment was made by the Christian Heritage Party candidate that he was sure she had a good reason; however, she did not deem us important enough to give that reason to.

    The Christian Heritage Party candidate, Steve Elgersma, seems to be a good man with strong convictions, but he is a little to extreme to earn my vote.

    The Green Part has a very progressive platform. Although the party leader, Ms. May, did an excellent job in the Leaders Debate, our local candidate, Stephana Johnston, was not prepared for our local debate and although sincere, I fear is not ready to represent us in Ottawa.

    The Liberal Party candidate, Dr. Eric Hoskins, is a great representative of his party and was by far the best politician at the debate. However, outside the Liberal Party Platform, he presented no ideas of his own. And like a good politician, he flip-flopped on many issues. For example, he said that he wants to see more development in Haldimand and he stands for saving farm land. Forgive me if I am being dense, but I don’t understand how you can have it both ways.

    Dr. Hoskins did make a very valid point about independent Gary McHale. If you support Mr. McHale’s efforts in Caledonia, don’t send him away to Ottawa with your vote. Keep him here, working for his cause, drawing attention to Caledonia’s concerns in a way that no politician, independent or otherwise, can.

    These conclusions leave, for me, only one option and one candidate – NDP candidate Ian Nichols. He was very well prepared for the debate. He understands his party’s platform, but is not blinded by it to the point that he forgets about his local constituents’ concerns.

    Unlike what Dr. Hoskins said in his closing statements (a very unprofessional comment, I might add), a vote for the NDP is not a vote for Finley. A vote for Ian Nichols is a vote for the people. For a Party Leader with the people at heart.

    We aren’t happy with Finley. We are not impressed with the Liberals. But we are NOT America. We are NOT a two party system. Don’t throw your vote away by voting for someone you don’t believe in to stop someone you don’t believe in from getting elected. There is an alternative, and the majority WANTS an alternative. I know who I am voting for.