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10:39 AM 16/01/2006

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5:45 PM 12/01/2006
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Federal Election - 2006 - élection générale

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Christian Heritage
Steven Elgersma
Diane Finley
Valya Roberts
Bob Speller
Carolyn Van Nort

Diane Finley

2004 Result/Résultats:
Diane Finley
Bob Speller
Carrie Sinkowski
Colin Jones
Steven Elgersma

For historical result, please see
2004 Prediction page

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15 01 06 Steve G
Bob Speller's "Bring Back Bob" campaign is going down to defeat. While Speller may claim to reporters that he encounters hordes of people in this riding who profess to miss him and want him back (I'm skeptical, but let's take Bob at his word...), there is virtually no way that a largely rural riding like this one will go Liberal when the Conservatives are on the cusp of forming the next government. Diane Finley is well-respected and will likely be in Harper's Cabinet.
Prediction: CPC 48%, Lib: 35%, NDP: 13%, Green/others: 4%
08 01 06 Aric H
This riding was profiled on CPAC tonight for the first time. While it was close last time because of Bob Speller's incumbency and popularity, the Conservatives will win it easily this time if their numbers continue going up and the Liberals continue going down. While Speller says on the CPAC profile that some people are telling him they want him back and regret voting him out in 2004, the timing is wrong for his "Bring Back Bob" campaign. He will probably have to wait this one out until the Liberal's popularity goes back up in the next election.
03 01 06 B.N.
The Conservatives will not lose Haldimand-Norfolk. This is conservative heartland in terms of the core CPC demographic. To break into this riding after years of Alliance and PC vote splitting they had to overcome the Liberal incumbency factor. They did so, and now they have that advantage. The only way the riding jumps back to Speller is if something goes disastrously wrong for the Conservatives in Ontario, and even if that happens this would be one of the last to go. CPC Hold.
31 12 05 A.S.
That I'm not calling this for Finley is a tokenism for this being a Finley-Speller rematch. Otherwise, given this swath of Erie shoreline has no urban centre beyond c15-20,000 pop, is presently incumbent CPC federally and (under the popular Toby Barrett) PC provincially, it *ought* to remain tobacco-Tory smokin'--though funnily enough, back in the Nixon-Peterson 80s, it was provincial Liberal heartland...
09 12 05 Another Farmer
This riding will be close but I think Finley will win it once again. However Speller is taking his last shot at this riding and he is acting like a wounded bear. That is dangerous to all those expecting an easy Conservative win. This will be a long hard battle. The difference will be that Finley appears to be taking the high road while Speller started throwing mud a few months ago. This riding does not take well to negative campaigns and this should translate in a narrow Finley win. If the Conservatives had a better leader this would be a no contest.
08 12 05 Mark R.
I drive through this riding everyday and the local Conservative campaign appears to be getting off to a very slow start. Former Liberal MP Bob Speller on the other hand has had a fast start and seems to have 10 signs up for every Conservative MP Diane Finley sign. I spotted only 1 NDP sign. The campaign offices of Bob Speller are up, operating and there seems to be a lot of activity. There is a "Bring Bob Back" movement underway with a couple of signs up in Simcoe and Delhi. If the trend continues, I can see Bob Speller back in Ottawa, however there is a lot of time left between now and January 23.
04 12 05 Ajay
I have to say that I think Bob will get back in. Buzz telling the NDP to vote for Liberals in key ridings like this will help. Also, he was known for going to all the community events, he lives here with his family, and I think a lot of people vote for Bob, not necessarily for the party. He’s a friendly guy, and from what I’ve seen of Diane Finley, she seems kind of standoffish. It’s all politics, all bad Liberals, all how hard she’s working. Where Bob seemed to be more at ease with people, farmers and the like, she seems to be taking a shine to the travel (which keeps her from less interesting local commitments I guess) and seeing her name in the paper. To the Conservatives filling this board, I do think some of Harper’s ideas may resonate, but nasty won’t win here, and I think a lot of people will return to Speller.
01 12 05 farmer joe
Amusing is right. Amusing is concluding that Imperial Tobacco's closure "makes Ms. Finley vulnerable" when it was liberal tax policies that drove it out of Canada. If you look up some of what she has said, Finley knows the harvest (and interestingly, health) problem that this caused, just like she had a good understanding of the complicated problem that plagued Alta feedlots and Sask calvers. Westerners have publicly thanked her for that.
29 11 05 Brain Trust
It's rather amusing to see Speller's folks trying vainly to balance out reasoned outside observers. Baring a Conservative meltdown in Ontario, this riding will firmly remain in the Blue column. Finley works hard, and if Speller couldn't beat her last time as a Cabinet Minister, and with the Libs up on the Tories in Ontario. why would anyone reasonably expect he to storm back and take this riding? While there may be some riding the Tories will lose their seats to the Libs, this most definitely won't be one.
26 11 05 farmer joe
Finley will take this seat again with a larger margin than last time. She went over and above what she had to do to prove to her constituents that she knows that she works for them, and she represents them in an effective and graceful manner.
Fact is, Bob would have been whipped into voting FOR gay marriage, FOR more money to the "gun registry", FOR the socialist NDP urban-minded budget, FOR lax marijuana laws, and other such so-lib stuff that does not exactly fit into the way of life in this corner of canada. He simply can't effectively represent this riding.
And let's not forget that whole issue of corruption. Who owns the company that Speller lives (and works) in Ottawa for? This should get cleared up at some point (including why/how it gets to do government printing). http://www.crtc.gc.ca/archive/ENG/Decisions/2002/db2002-188.htm
Of course nobody cares about all that, the big issue here is tobacco, whether you grow it or buy it or do any transactions with anyone that does. Whatever kind of post the winner gets, Agriculture minister or a different cabinet post, critic or otherwise, heck, backbancher, the question on this ballot is, who does this riding trust to keep this on the Ag Minister's burner (even if it is their own, colleague's or otherwise)? That would be Finley.
26 10 05 AG
By the way what all you Conservative types have forgot to mention is that because Harper couldn't keep a staffer to save his life, Finlay's hubby has got a promotion or two. So you can rest assured this parachute will have even more outside money flying at her.
PS - I could name a few events that Finaly has missed (several actually, but he staffer who has been writing on here would obviously disagree - way to schedule)
(The Sex Bill? Come on)
23 10 05 Mark R.
Mr. Speller has won the Liberal nomination and will battle incumbent PC MP Diane Finley. Speller lost last time due to troubles with the farming community. This is tobacco land - yes, it is still legal to make a living off of tobacco. The announcements this week that Imperial Tobacco is closing the remainder of it's Canadian manufacturing operations in nearby Aylmer, and in Guelph, will do nothing but make Ms. Finley vulnerable, and look as bad as what Mr. Speller did before the real carnage in the tobacco business began. It's better to have a member on the government side of the house, and even still, a cabinet minister. Mr. Speller has an excellent profile in this riding. Conservative support in Ontario is down and Mr. Harper will not be Prime Minister. What does this mean? A close race last time and the voters aren't mad at Mr. Speller anymore. I think this riding will be Liberal again.
15 08 05 KH
I would just like to set the record straight about The Hill Times survey that has been mentioned here. When I saw the news clipping which announced that Diane Finely was voted Hardest Working MP I laughed out loud. Then I wanted to get the facts about this survey so I found the full article on www.thehilltimes.ca.
The article states that “The Hill Times contacted all 307 MPs’ offices by phone and email. A total of 78 staffers anonymously participated, including 35 Liberals, 28 Conservatives, nine NDPs and six BQs.”
Using 307 as the number of offices, I assume that there are 2.5 staffers in each office (between 2 and 3 per office). This means that with over 750 possible respondents (likely more), only 78 actually responded – this is only 10%!
Further to this, it wasn’t that Ms. Finley was voted Hardest Working MP all by herself. No, the list of MPs who share the honours (all receiving the same number of votes) is as follows: Prime Minister Paul Martin, Conservative MP Diane Finley, NDP MP Judy Wasylycia-Leis, Conservative MP Peter MacKay, NDP MP Peter Stoffer and Conservative MP Pierre Poilievre. This is a total of 6 people who all received the same number of votes.
Then, there is also a list of MPs who received the second highest number of votes: Conservative MP Carol Skelton, Liberal MP Don Boudria, Canadian Heritage Minister Liza Frulla, Liberal MP Peter Adams, Finance Minister Ralph Goodale, Public Works Minister Scott Brison and Conservative Leader Stephen Harper. This is a total of 7 people.
Only 72 staffers responded to this particular survey question so these 72 votes had to be split between 13 people, not to mention those who were not grouped into the 1st or 2nd places (for example, those who received only one or two votes). I won’t crunch any more numbers as I’m sure each of you all can do this for yourselves; however, it’s safe to say that all Ms. Finley would need to have done to secure this title as Hardest Working MP is to have all members of her own staff vote for her, and perhaps the staff members in one other office.
Of course, I will not be surprised when Ms. Finley puts this title of Hardest Working MP in her campaign flyers and on her website, knowing that the survey The Hill Times completed was far from reliable nor is it a true testament of what she has been doing since June 2004.
30 07 05 Observer
Not sure where AG gets his "facts". At least he highlighted Finley's deep family roots in the riding when he mentioned her mother. Some of the other comments are just laughably untrue. I can't think of Finley or any MP in a minority government wanting to build a house in Ottawa.
Finley is one of Ottawa's hardest working MPs according to the Hill Times. This publication may be read only by political junkies, but when they pick the top MPs, it's by people in the know. And to top it all off,I'm hearing Speller called yesterday's man. These facts combined with what the Dunner outlined means this riding stays Conservative.
21 07 05 ruralguy
It's a Finley slam-dunk for sure. Now, I would like to set the record straight about Ms. Finley's record. First, of all, as reported by AG (04/05/05), Diane is not building a house in Ottawa. That is simply a lie. Where would Diane with all her extra responsibilities as Official Opposition Agriculture/Agrifood Critic (the heaviest porfolio by far) find the time to build a house? Gimme a break. And as far as missing events that she's been invited to, I’m aware the only events she's missed have been due to last-minute flight changes---which are completely out of her hands, especially when the weather doesn't cooperate. Diane has been highly visible in H-N and if constituents claim they don't know what she's doing, they should complain to the editors of local Liberal-leaning newspapers that refuse to arry her news releases, speech excerpts, and questions to the Minister. For some reason, they love Bob Speller's mug. Diane has accomplished a great deal on Parliament Hill, but very few papers will report it. She was able to convince the Liberal Agriculture Minister to drop the deposit portion on the CAIS program. Farm stakeholders know what Diane has done for them. I wonder what Mr. Speller accomplished in his 16 years? His much vaunted Agricultural Policy Framework sat on the desk of 3 ministers, including himself, and was never implemented. I guess even Bob didn't think it was that great. Diane has led the charge to convince our American counterparts to open their border to our cattle exports. Until Judge Cebull's decision to place a late July hearing on hold, Diane and a delegation of Conservative MPs and Senators were going to attend the Montana hearing to defend our cattle farmers. Mr. Speller announced at an all candidates meeting in Kohler in 2004 that the border would be reopened in August 2004. To conclude, I'm confident voters will re-elect Diane Finley, named by the Hill Times, as our hardest working MP, compared to Mr. Speller, who placed 3rd for throwing the best party while he was in Ottawa.
14 06 05 The Dunner
The simple fact of the matter is, that Bob Speller after 15 years as a Member of Parliament and being Minister of Agriculture lost to a rookie MP. Not only did he loose but as races throughout the Province were going liberal or conservative by a few hundred votes, this one went Conservative by almost a 1000. Ms. Finley took this one before and she will take it again. In a riding where 2/3 of all Tobacco Farmers in Canada reside, the Liberal Party has done nothing for. This lack of Leadership combined with Scandal, Corruption and trying to pass a Sex Bill in a riding that is 90% against it will play to Ms. Finley. This time the Conservatives will win by 2500 votes and Bob will show that he couldn't take no for answer.
15 05 05 Rebel
Hi Jeremy...I appreciate your moderate and well cast arguments, but I think you are stringing far too many "ifs" in your scenario of Speller returning to Parliament. While polls wax and wane in Ontario, I don't think anything but a remarkable swing back to the Liberals (a la 1926) will get this riding back in their column.
11 05 05 Brendan
WitIf the Conservatives can win this seat against an incumbent Cabinet Minister, this should be a safe set due to the fact that the Conservatives are up in Ontario vs. the last election.
08 05 05 Brain Trust
This should be a fairly easy hold for the Conservatives. Diane Finley has been getting good media exposure on agricultural issues & has been constantly & consistently out in the riding connecting with her constituents.
And let's face it, if Speller couldn't hold the seat last time as an incumbent AND as a cabinet minister, why would he stand any better of a chance this time when the riding has had a chance to get to know (and they seem to ACTUALLY LIKE) Finley. Sorry Bob, you're still yesterday's man, and this is still going to be a Conservative riding.
04 05 05 AG
If Speller runs he will win, Diane Finlay is a no show in HN and her constituents will notice that. There is plenty of ammo for her opponents to use against her on this one, like the fact she's builing a house in Ottawa and uses her mother's address while in-riding. She consistantly misses events that she is invited to and does not have much of a presense. Speller has the name recognition, the personality and integrity to win this one. He needs to pick up only 200 disaffected Tory voters to win a riding he lost by an extremely small margin. If the NDP vote trickles down even a little, it will benefit the Liberals greatly. This was a riding that vote splitting altered the outcome, not Reform-PC, but Liberal-NDP. This isn't a safe seat for the Cons by a long shot and if recent polls are any indicator, neither is the election a safe call for Harper.
02 05 05 Jeremy Wittet
Ladies and Gentlemen. Mr Waterman's comments are well taken and are well thought through. But he fails to take into consideration several important points. Firstly it appears Mr.Speller will be running again in this riding which is certainly a positive sign, as many people feel that Mrs. Finley is inadequately representing this riding and was a parachuted candidate from day one. Secondly it appears Prime Minister Martin has confirmed with Mr.Speller that upon winning this seat, and a Liberal win nationally he will be reinstated as Minister of Agriculture. I strongly believe this riding will go back to the Liberals.
02 05 05 M. Lunn
I would say there is a 90% chance the Conservatives will hold this. The only reason I am reluctant to call this one yet is the Conservatives had a six point lead in Ontario a week ago, but now are trailing the liberals by six points. Nevertheless the liberals won by 14 points in Ontario on average while lost by 4 points in this riding, so there would need to be a backlash against Harper triggering an early election for the liberals to win this. Not to mention the incumbent advantage last time went to agriculture minister Bob Speller where as this time around, the Conservatives agriculture critic and possibly future agriculture minister if they form government has the incumbent advantage.
28 04 05 Benjamin Waterman
I live in this riding, and I can assure you that there is no reasonable chance of the Liberals winning back Haldimand-Norfolk. The Tories are going to win it by a wide margin. Very few people here seem to enthusiastically support the Liberals. Their reasonably high vote share in 2004 was largely due to Bob Speller's position as Agriculture Minister. As he is no longer an MP, let alone the Agriculture Minister, that advantage is eliminated. Furthermore, Diane Finley is Stephen Harper's Agriculture Critic, and as it appears likely that the Conservatives will win this election, that gives her somewhat of a further advantage to, as we'd probably have the agriculture minister be from here again.
The Liberals only this place for so long because of vote splitting, first with the Christian Heritage Party, and then with the Reform/PC split. Now that it is in the hands of the Tories, this riding is going to stay Blue for a long, long time.

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