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||Hon. Jack Layton|
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2004 Prediction page
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||20 01 06
|Went to Greektown for lunch and shopping today (20th). Two big surprises driving up from Lakeshore: a) how many houses had signs - far more than in Etobicoke where I live, and b) how many of them were Liberal. Now, I really can't believe that Layton will lose. But if the signs are any indication, this will be a lot closer than most people expect.|
||17 01 06
|Thanks to the Conservative ad campaign making fun of Jack Layton's moustache, I think momentum has shifted to him, at least in the form of sympathy. The question isn't if he will win his seat, it is how many seats he will take from the Liberal Party, and how many seats he will keep from going to the neo-tories. The Conservatives have made a mistake of near Kim Campbell proportion thanks to their advertisers. The question is, how well will Jack take advantage of this momentum shift.|
||11 01 06
|Jack Layton will win this hands down just beccause party leaders seldom lose their seats. Besides, he has a high profile in the local media here and is bound to piggyback at least couple Toronto NDP candidates into the House Of Commons.|
||05 01 06
|Coyne had a big challenge at the start of the campaign in trying to defeat an incumbent Party Leader - that was when the Liberals were well ahead in Ontario. Now with the Liberals lower in Ontario than at the start of the campaign the challenge is close to impossible. With the Liberals down they will be losing seats and not picking them up.|
I also sense none of the urgency from the NDP about this riding that they had in 2004 when they went up against Mills. They know they don't have to worry here this year and can focus on other Toronto ridings instead.
||03 01 06
|Now, some FACTS. If you go to the Elections Canada website, you can download the raw polling data from the last Election. This I have done, and here are some facts one can glean.|
Of 195 polls in the riding, Mills had 73 victories by plurality or better, Layton had 122. (Note that we're including here those in which the margin might have only been one or two votes, a virtual tie.) Of their victories, there were 27 'majority' (i.e. getting >50% of the poll station vote) victories for Mills versus 62 for Layton. So, Layton won almost 32 per cent of the polls in the riding in a convincing fashion, versus almost 14 per cent won that way by Mills.
Now, here's another interesting point. Of Mills' 'majority' poll victories, the average number of total votes cast in the poll was about 201 per poll (or 5,429 raw total votes officially cast), whereas for Layton's 'majority' victories, the average number of votes cast was about 285 votes cast per poll (or 17,698 raw total votes officially cast).
This means that the polls in which Mills dominated were not typically as "vote-rich" (or "turnout rich") as the ones in which Layton dominated, and for which he outnumbered Mills by over two-to-one. So back to AG's contention - even if Coyne were to get out the Muslim votes as well as, or better than Dennis' loyalists supposedly did - - even if she could, they are unlikely to have much influence on the overall outcome.
And how exactly is an Ottawa-based lawyer with no roots, no local incumbency and no "bona fides" in the riding going to convince local voters that she somehow will do more about the Don Mills river when she's just been parachuted in, over the past few weeks?
||03 01 06
|While Coyne's singing "Hit the Road, Jack" she knows it's going to be difficult. Jack is staying here. Not only is the leader of a major party, he was a good city councellor and has done a good job representing this riding. Toronto-Danforth will not reject a leader of a major party. Watch a large chunk of votes siphon from the Liberals to the NDP here, and we'll also see a small margin of votes go to the Conservatives and Green. Lock this up, this is Layton's.|
||29 12 05
|Sign update - Jack outnumbers everyone else by 50:1 or more; Coyne describes herself as the "right" choice for Toronto Danforth, perhaps trying to retain the right of centre Liberal vote? One or two signs for the Greens around, none at all for the Conservatives. |
Coyne's office is on the Danforth near Broadview; I have walked past several times and have yet to see more than 4 or 5 people inside. Lots of empty tables and unattended telephones.
The Toronto Star reported a couple of weeks back that there is an unofficial betting line out on this riding, with an over/under on a Layton majority of 6,000
And one more thing - residents here know that Jack has done many things for the riding in the past as a Toronto councillor. Comments made by various respondents below that Layton is not a constituency man seem ludicrous, especially as Coyne has been parachuted in from Ottawa and barely even knows her way around.
||28 12 05
|I predict that Layton will win. However, I would counsel him not to be complacent. |
On the positive side, he has excellent name recognition as well as the credentials of being a leader of a national party. As well, I have observed that he actually appears to be the only candidate with signs posted throughout the riding. The NDP has championed a number of initiatives that benefit downtown Toronto, incld. the addition of sig new transit funding to the federal budget, so there's definitely an argument to be made that he has benefited the riding.
On the negative side, he appears to be horrible at constituency work. Based on my experience, he is rarely actually present in the riding and his office does a poor job of responding to queries from constituents.
Recalling that he won the last election by a very narrow margin, I believe that he should be taking the job of getting himself re-elected much more seriously.
As well, his performance in debates and speeches, etc, while credible, rubs a lot of people the wrong way. Moreover, in my judgement, the NDP are running a pretty lackluster campaign, striking tenaciously to a few key messages
||23 12 05
|I don't think this riding will be close this year, and I suspect Layton will be declared elected early in the night as opposed to late in the night like last year. Layton has almost all the advantages this year compared to when he ran against Mills:|
1. He is the incumbent now and not just any incumbent, but a party leader. Party leaders rarely lose in Canada except in major smashups like Kim Campbell losing her seat in 1993.
2. Layton has an even higher profile this year than last after being in Parliament, orchestrating the NDP budget, being on the news every day and just having national exposure in the leader's debate in which he was said to have done better than last year.
3. Coyne does not have the name recognition in Toronto-Danforth that Mills did after he had been an MP for 15 years. Coyne is mentioned in the news once in a while as someone once connected to Pierre Trudeau - not someone the average person on the streets of T-D would know by name as they would know Layton.
4. Coyne is just moving into the riding and does not have the familiarity with it that Mills did or the organization on the ground.
5. The Liberal vote will probably be a bit lower in Toronto this year than last and people here will want the advantage of having the NDP leader representing them.
||15 12 05
|The predominant issue for Arab-Canadians is the war in Iraq (and Afghanistan) and the Palestinian question - same sex marriage isn't even on the radar if you look at the Arab, Iranian and Pakistani-Canadian press. If anything, Arab voters as well as many Muslims are becoming increasingly disillusioned with the Liberals over these questions. Fewer Muslims will be voting Liberal this election than last so to the limited extent that the Muslim population in Danforth is a factor, there will be fewer Liberal votes this time, not more.|
||13 12 05
|Just wanted to clarify a few points. First on the Muslim vote. The riding is not predominantly Muslim I agree, but as I scrutineered the last election at a poll in the northeast end of the riding, I noticed how overwhelmingly Muslim some of those polls were and at the end of the night how overwhelmingly they voted for Mills. The Muslim-Canadian population in the riding is growing, take a walk on the Danforth east of Jones if you want proof. Liberal strength among immigrants and willingness to accept people with all views on the same sex issue, unlike the NDP (see Bev Desjarlais) might make that vote continue to go with the Grits in spite of Coyne's personal views on the issue.|
Second, on the waterfront. Miller was elected on the island airport and yes Mills created the Port Authority which was responsible for the debacle, but that wasn't what I was talking about. The island airport is not the waterfront that matters in Toronto-Danforth. The waterfront east of the Don river is in bad shape and Mills was one of the people who led the fight to revive it. Mayor Miller has finally been persuaded to get on board but Jack was very silent on the issue as he has with most local issues.
||12 12 05
|As a resident of Toronto -- Danforth, I have to say: As much as I was hoping for a nice, tight race, it simply isn't going to happen. Support for Layton is huge, and the only things I've heard against him is one friend who'll "Most likely vote Liberal" and a lawn sign on Coxwell that's read "E - Jack - U - Layton" for a few days now. The seat will be Layton's, and it won't be particularly close.|
||07 12 05
|With respect to AG's comments, sorry but you are clearly out of touch with the riding. This is not some riding where Muslims (and those who must be eligible to vote, remember) can be expected to vote influentially as some block en masse - try Mississauga, my friend. And even if they did, I concur with DL's assessment about Coyne's similar liability.|
The reality is that T.O.-Danforth happens to be one of the hottest housing markets in all of Ontario, reflecting major residential turnover in just a few short years. The turnover influx (in net terms) likely favours cosmopolitan yuppies that are more likely to vote for Layton or the Liberal, and not someone with an "anti gay marriage" position. Stodgy religion-based voter blocks (including Greeks) are holding less and less sway. It's probably one of the factors that helped Jack to finally beat Dennis.
Lastly, AG, you seem to think that Dennis Mills was popular on the Waterfront issue, and that David Miller isn't. Oops, sorry I have to ask - - but on further reflection - - do you actually live in Toronto? David Miller's successful canning of the Island Airport bridge is what will probably help David Miller get comfortably re-elected as mayor, despite being (perceived anyway as) weak on crime.
||06 12 05
|Still only Layton signs throughout the neighbourhood. Without Mr. Harris from the Greens, without Dennis Mills, this is a sure thing for Jack.|
||05 12 05
|The only thing Layton has done for the riding is propose a bill to rename it - ironically he killed the bill himself when he brought down the government.|
Layton held the new urban agenda hostage for his new spending, and has done absolutely nothing to actually benefit the average Toronto--Danforth constituent - it took months for Jack to even set up a constituency office, one that had the task of replacing the best in the country according to many publications - and failed miserably at that task.
I'm not comfortable predicting a Liberal win - what I can predict however, is that with the kind of campaign they had last election, the Liberals can make this a race and even win it.
||05 12 05
|I think the people who voted for Mills did so IN SPITE of his socially conservative agenda. If anything, the nomination of Coyne might lure back votes lost to the NDP in previous elections.|
||01 12 05
|If Deborah Coyne can match Dennis Mills' organizational prowess and eliminate votes lost due to his opposition to SSM, she'll give Layton a good race. Party leaders almost always win, though, and it seems inconceivable that Layton would be an exception in a fairly strong NDP riding and after a successful first term.|
||01 12 05
|"The growing Muslim population in the riding will still have problems voting for a man so strongly in support of gay marriage."|
Get real. It was a Liberal government that brought in gay marriage! Any socially conservative Muslim who was going to vote on this issue alone will vote Conservative and not for a pro-gay marriage Liberal who bore Trudeau's illegitimate child!!
||01 12 05
|The Conservatives appear to have nominated their candidate in Jeff Goreski. As rare as conservative voters are in this riding, is there any chance this candidate might see inflated support as right-leaning Liberals of East York no longer have the socially conservative Mills?|
||30 11 05
|Lawn sign count for day two on my street in the centre of the riding - Jack 10, everyone else zero. Dennis Mills was matching almost sign for sign in the last campaign. Layton to win with a significantly increased majority.|
||30 11 05
|Layton will win this, but don't expect a cakewalk. The growing Muslim population in the riding will still have problems voting for a man so strongly in support of gay marriage. They aren't the only group who see this as a liability. Also, Jack loses the help of Marilyn Churley in campaigning this time. She will be kept busy with her own race in Beeches-East York. The problem for the Liberals, is Deborah Coyne has no ability to attack Jack on the point where he deserves the most criticism: his minimal presence in the riding. This race would be as tight if not tighter than last time if it weren't for the fact that Coyne is from Ottawa. For Coyne to be successful she needs to hammer on his inaction on local issues like the waterfront redevelopment, currently being blocked by Layton's buddy in the mayor's office. Here is something that Dennis Mills worked extensively on and if she can promise a return to strong local representation, voters might give her notice.|
The only way Coyne wins this race is some disaster from Layton during the campaign or if the Greens can finally get their act together and pose a credible option for all the environmentalists in the riding.
||30 11 05
|The First NDP leader in a generation to show that the far lefties can actually get the Liberals to screw over the "blue Liberals" and enact more lefty stuff. . . . There is no indication of any sort in newsmedia or polls that Layton is in any trouble. If anything, he's probably got the attention of many core left-of-centre Liberals who like how effective he's been in halting corporate tax cuts and raising the environmental stuff that the John Manley/Ralph Goodlae Set don't care for . . .|
||29 11 05
|This will be a victory for the NDP. Likely not a landslide, but Layton demonstrated himself as an effective leader and MP in Ottawa. Coyne's lack of any Toronto east-end community efforts will hurt her chances in the community-oriented East York and grassroots-driven Riverdale portions. The NDP had much harder competion in the fed last election, and will likely have another challenging match against Mills' liberal machine when Ben Chin runs provincially in the by-election. However, with the national party on his side, I say a Layton win by 17%.|
||25 11 05
|Jack had the fight of his life last time. not so much this time around, he is the incumbent, he is a national leader, he does not have the green leader to worry about nor a popular liberal MP. On election night expect jack to increase his margin of victory in Toronto-Danforth.|
||25 11 05
|As party leader, Jack Layton should be re-elected fairly easily. However, the role he has played in bringing down the government will probably hurt him. The case was put to me by a recently-naturalized Canadian of Latin American background who was going to vote NDP but now thinks she will vote Liberal instead. 'Layton should be co-operating with the Liberals and not the Conservatives,' she said, adding that the Conservatives were bad for 'ordinary people' like her.|
A colleague said, in comment, that he had heard the same attitude expressed by the immigrant staff members of a nursing home where he regularly visits someone. If this attitude exists more generally among new voters, Jack Layton may nevertheless keep his seat, but other NDP candidates in the GTA will have a very difficult time.
||25 11 05
|While political junkies may know that Deborah Coyne is a "respected" constitutional lawyer and the cousin of rightwing (yet talented) columnist Andrew Coyne, the political literati are not a significant bloc of votes.|
Layton has the advantage of being a national party leader, the most respected party leader in the country, and he now has the added advantage of incumbency.
Liberal win? I laughed so hard that tea came out my nose.
||24 11 05
|This riding will be closer than some people seem to think, and it all depends on Stephen Harper. Layton benefited last time from a significant anti-Mills vote, and still barely pulled it off. I think Layton has a good chance of winning again, but it depends on how well Harper and the Conservatives are doing nationally. If there is any risk of Harper becoming P.M., a lot of potential or past NDP voters in this riding will turn to the Liberals, and Layton risks losing this seat for the same reason Olivia Chow failed to win Trinity-Spadina last time around.|
||24 11 05
|Deborah Coyne is not a heavyweight candidate in Toronto Danforth. She would be in an "Establishment Liberal" riding where the Liberals would win anyway in a walk. On the other hand, Layton has gained a national persona as leader of the NDP beyond his last electoral performance. I would predict an NDP win of 4,500 or more...|
||23 11 05
|I live in the riding and have been a political junkie for years. I actually knew who Deborah Coyne was BEFORE I caught wind of the Libs' nominating her. How many T-D voters do you think could say the same thing? How many of you pundits out there?|
Get with it, people. Dennis Mills was a tough candidate for Jack to knock off since Dennis was a strong local-name-brand INCUMBENT, despite Dennis' out-of-touch moral values for many of his constituents. He had a love-him-or-hate him style like Jack, meaning that of those who loved him - - Dennis could count on a loyal, motivated riding campaign team. Dennis could at least claim having DONE things over the years for constituents in his riding, and even for Toronto in general (though SARS-stock aside, the latter was a checkered record... read: Toronto Port Authority).
Now, let's see what we have here on Deborah Coyne. I just Googled her and what do I get? One page of a repeated reference to a May 17 Globe & Mail article indicating that she had a daughter by Trudeau, is married to Michael Valpy (- - so what??), is an "expert constitutional lawyer" or some such thing, and who seems to have buzzed advice into Clyde Wells' ear during the time he was busy trashing the Meech Lake deal. One page of repetitive Google references. No web page yet, "touting" her accomplishments. Nada.
According to the Globe article: "Coyne lives in Ottawa and could try for the nomination in one of two ridings, including the Ottawa West-Nepean riding of retiring Liberal MP Marlene Catterall." Well if, Chantel Hebert's article of Nov 23rd is any indication, I guess the old Liberal guarders in Ottawa just weren't ready to let her take one of their cushy seats. Too much of a desire to hang on, for one last pensionable go-around.
So, what we have is a supposed "star" candidate for whom they couldn't find an Ottawa riding to plunk her into. No roots in Toronto Danforth, no elected political track record anywhere, even as a school trustee... and yet there are those who claim to wonder about "what Jack has done for his riding"? Excuse me, but lest we forget, Jack was a prominent Toronto city councillor for many a moon. Folks, his deep constituency roots are what helped put him over the top vs Dennis, or at least cancelled Dennis' normal incumbent's advantage. Again, love Jack or hate him, I don't think that the argument that Jack is somehow a weak constituency man will stick.
And Jack can claim something that no other past NDP leader can claim - he can actually take (partial) credit for a (seemingly) popular Budget - at least a Budget you'll have to concede is popular in Toronto and his riding. Something he can take back to local voters, who have to admit he achieved something.
T-D constituents will go "Deborah who?" when she comes their door. Maybe she can command some decent organizing help from the Liberals' machine, given her connections, let's grant her that. But otherwise, people - please do the political calculus before you think that some parachuter is a "strong candidate" who will somehow give a reasonably well-liked party leader a run for his money. And a leader who is now an INCUMBENT, in a traditional NDP riding. (Yes it is folks, provincial MPP Marilyn Churley and Jack's replacement, city councillor Paula Fletcher are long-time NDPers. Dennis was bucking a trend by sheer force of personality.)
So couldn't this have shaved votes for Jack? This time, with people knowing that a Liberal or Tory minority is almost a certainty given the Bloc's lock in Quebec, and with lingering Adscam disgust, it's reasonable to think that the same fear tactic will be a harder sell this time, especially when the NDP has actually made a bit of a name for itself under Jack.
So, everyone, face it - - it won't be a "2,400-vote close call" and "only" 46% this time for Jack. Deborah Coyne will NOT "pin down" Jack like Dennis did. Watch the Ontario and Toronto polling numbers before you assume, people, that Jack will have a rough ride. He just might get himself the Toronto coattails he was looking for last time. Current prediction - Layton 56%, Coyne 35% (at best - depending on how many anti-Jack votes she can retain from the "Dennis hangover"). No one else gets their deposit back.
||23 11 05
|Deborah Coyne will take this riding. |
1. She has an amazing campaign team that is building on top of the Dennis Mills machine.
2. She will get constant media attention due to her Trudeau links.
3. She is a brilliant constitutional lawyer and well versed on all issues.
||23 11 05
|It took Jack 6 months just to open a constituency office. Although he has been trying to raise his profile in the riding by holding open houses and public forums throughout the fall, I think his lack of time in the constituency will come back to haunt him. This riding has the second highest percentage of gays and lesbians in Toronto. Virtually all of them, including many traditional Liberal voters, voted for Jack last time because Mills was completely opposed to same sex marriage. Still, Jack only won by 2,000 votes. Coyne is bright and personable with alot of energy. I am betting many of those gay and lesbian Liberals who voted for Jack last time will return to the fold and vote for Coyne this election.|
All Coyne has to do is increase her percentage of the vote in Riverdale, as she will sweep the East York part of the riding - just like Mills did last time. It should be a real cliffhanger on election night. I predict Coyne by a nose.
||15 11 05
||Bear and Ape|
|Our advice to Elaine is to make sure you know who is actually running before you claim somethign is a "no-brainer". But the Liberals will have a strong candidate with Coyne, and this will tie Layton up in this riding. We don't think Layton will loose but this is not going to be a cakewalk for him. We agree with the no-name poster from November 11th that all this will do is keep the NDP from taking other seats, particularly in Toronto (trinity-spadina and parkdale-high park come to mind). Layton's and the NDP' s appearance of being responsible and "moral" in the last parliament will help keep him in power. Not to mention the money and resources that will be sent to keep him in power.|
||15 11 05
|I think we can all stop speculating. Dennis Mills is definitely running. His riding association is gearing up. He is working the riding vigorously. He will most certainly win. Mr. Layton cannot achieve greater than what he did, and Mr. Mills will successfully woo the conservative voters -- as he did in the past. All he needs is about 2,000 to knock out Mr. Layton. Moreover, Mr. Layton has not made a lasting impact on the riding. He has no presence whatsoever. Completely agreeing with the previous post, the riding will return to its traditional Liberal roots. This, as they say in politics, is a no-brainer.|
Editor’s Note: Mr Mills is NOT seeking the Liberal Nomination.
||11 11 05
|Jack came close enough to losing before and faces some new stiff competition in Liberal start pick up Deborah Coyne. I think it'll be enough to tip the scales against him - though probably not by much.|
||12 11 05
|Should the Liberal nomination go through, it'll be a heavyweight in Deborah Coyne running here. Could she knock out Jack Layton, what with the Trudeau connection and so on? I'm not sure, but I think she'll give him a run for his money. TCTC.|
||11 11 05
|Well constitutional lawyer Deborah Coyne has announced that she's seeking the Liberal nomination for Toronto Danforth...which no doubt she'll get.|
My feeling is that she's not running against Jack. She's running for a Senate seat.
Tie Jack up in his home riding so that he can't get out and travel the country as party leader and then as a reward send Coyne off to the "red chamber" after the election.
The campaign begins now "DEBORAH COYNE FOR SENATOR!"
||10 11 05
|I wouldn't be too confident about an NDP victory. While it's true that Jack Layton pulled off a victory over a dedicated constituency man in 2004, you need to remember the following things:|
a) the 2004 margin of victory wasn't that great, despite polls showing a much wider margin,
b) as previous posters have indicated, this isn't a hip riding, trendy storefronts notwithstanding,
c) the Liberals are likely nominating Deborah Coyne, a respected constitutional lawyer,
d) there is no real Conservative presence to speak of, meaning that the Liberals have a clear run at everyone not on the left of the political spectrum (and please don't say that the Green Party will surprise everyone: they have been invisible and disorganized for the last 18 months, and will be lucky to crack 5 percent here)
e) there's quite a bit of backlash from people who experimented with minority government, thank you very much, but have decided that they just don't like the insecurity and threats of dissolving parliament that come with it.
Like it or not, a lot of people will end up holding their noses and voting for the Liberals.
||10 08 05
|It is always interesting to hear those urban legends about Toronto-Danforth being an historic "stronghold" for the NDP. Please, folks, check the facts.|
The Tories once held this seat for 27 years, compared to 23 years of NDP representation--and that was back in the late '60s until the mid-'80s.
The fact is the Liberals federally have held the riding for a total of 19 years (over two periods of time), and the most recent 16 years have been Liberal. Does one not think that there may be a Liberal culture present throughout the riding at this point? Or perhaps it might be a Dennis Mills culture? In the 2004 federal election, Mr. Layton looked and acted more like the ever-charismatic Mills than even his wife probably like to admit.
No one should be surprised to see a sweeping comeback by the mercurial and event-driven Mills--not if they know anything about the political culture and history of Toronto-Danforth, that is.
||05 07 05
|Layton will win easily. People vote for major party leaders (which does not include Jim Harris, who was scared away to run in Beaches East York).|
Thinking Layton's seat safe, however, a lot of Green-leaning folks might actually vote Green now that Harris (a significant vote depressor for the activist and progressive wing of the Greens) is gone. It would be beyond humiliation for the Green vote to go UP when the leader departs to the next riding, and there are lots of Greens in this riding (notably the GPC's former Head of Platform and Research Michael Pilling whom Harris purged in a takeover of the party's policy from the membership driven process Pilling had commissioned and overseen) who want to see it happen.
So figure 3000 votes might go Green here, mostly people who refuse to trust the NDP or still want to punish them for their anti-arts, anti-activist, anti-Greenpeace tactics in the 2001 provincial by-election in Beaches East York (a nasty affair covered in that prediction, and much amplified by the fact that Bob Hunter just died. This is probably the last election in which that bad blood will matter, but it still matters).
However, the Liberals just don't have a good case to unseat Layton who has done a good job. Very few people in Toronto don't want Layton to be there in Ottawa (including those Conservatives and Liberals who don't want him to be Mayor or in provincial power, and those who want him influencing the budget as he did in 2004 very successfully).
Also because they think Layton's seat is safe, there might be a surge in Marijuana Party, Communist Party, Progressive Canadian Party, and Canadian Action Party votes. Each of these might actually take as many as 1000 or so votes. But all it would take is one close poll to send these votes scrambling back to the NDP.
||04 07 05
|The comment below is dead wrong!|
"This riding has almost always gone Liberal and it is a riding with Liberal demographics. Right up until the end of the night in 2004 it looked like the Liberal candidate was going to beat Layton."
The riding of Toronto-Danforth (in its old name of Broadview-Greenwood) has historically been an NDP stronghold.
For most of its history Broadview was a Conservative seat (back in the days of Tory Toronto). John Gilbert of the NDP won it in 1965 and held it in 1968, 1972 and 1974. In 1978, the NDP held the seat easily in a byelection when Bob Rae made his political debut. Rae was easily reelected in 1979 and in 1980. He left to be ONDP leader and the NDP easily held the seat with the not-very appealing Lynn MacDonald in the byelection in 1982 and in the 1984 election. Mills upset MacDonald in 1988 by a very narrow margin as she was asleep at the switch and no one ever particularly liked her and of course the NDP was basically as dead as a doornail in the 1993, 1997 and 2000 elections. BUT, my point is that this part of Toronto has a very long NDP pedigree and i would suggest that Dennis Mills was an anomaly. The NDP has ruled this aprt of Toronto provincial by a wide margin in every single election since the mid-60s and the municipal wards elect nothing but New Democrats.
||24 06 05
|I think if the election were held tommorrow, all that stuff everyone else said about Jack Layton would be applicable and he would probably win this riding (except maybe that stuff about Toronto-Danforth being a "hip", naturally-NDP riding). But the election probably won't be for another year and that being said, I think Layton is going to do something really stupid and mess up the high profile he's riding right now. This riding has almost always gone Liberal and it is a riding with Liberal demographics. Right up until the end of the night in 2004 it looked like the Liberal candidate was going to beat Layton. He was actually substantially ahead in the beginning. Next time he will beat him for sure.|
||24 06 05
|Now that Dennis Mills is out of the picture, I can see the Liberals effectively "throwing" this seat out of gratitude for Mr. Moustache saving their skin. But it might be interesting to monitor Green leader Jim Harris, providing he runs here again; for all I know, by playing the "red Tory" game to the hilt, *he* could now wind up as the nominal "anti-Layton" in lieu of Grit and CPC...|
||01 06 05
|DL writes... "Let's face it, last years thousands of people who normally vote Liberal refused to vote for Mills because of his extreme socially conservative views which were so ridiculously out of step with a hip riding like Toronto-Danforth"|
Myth number one about the Danforth is that it's a hip riding, and myth number two is that hipness translates into an automatic NDP trouncing.
One, it isn't immensely hip. Nicely-decorated storefronts don't vote. I know the area quite well, and its chock-full of socially-conservative Greeks, Italians and Chinese voters, in Canada since the Pearson/Trudeau era, who wake up every morning and spray their suburban driveways clean. In that way it's probably not too removed from the likes of Davenport, only for whatever reason the public facade the riding puts one makes people think bicycles and tofu.
Secondly, no "hip" riding in the country has yet fallen from the Liberals to the NDP. University-heavy creative-class type areas (Van Quadra, Van Centre, Trinity-Spadina, Outremont, Westmount-VM) are often on a knifeedge, fine, but the conventional wisdom would have them all be orange blowouts. I think the political leanings of these young professionals are a little more divided than most people would imagine.
Mills fought an masterful rearguard campaign last time--everyone wrote him off on account of the same mistaken notion that the Danforth was "hip" and hip meant Layton--instead, he kept Toronto's NDP resources tied down in a close race and consequently drew enough fire for the other lakeshore Liberals to survive what was expected to be an NDP sweep. The numbers tell the tale: Mills, social conservatism and all, fell only 2000 votes shy of putting the NDP in a very ugly situation. And he did all this with essentially no support from Team Martin, out of what was very much a mutual distaste.
I'm quite certain Mills isn't running again. He did his part for the good ship Liberal, got his patronage playtoy with the Port Authority, and may be back again, but not for the time being. Whoever the Liberals nominate to replace him, regardless of their social stance, is going to fall far short of the 2004 numbers. So much of Mills' constit support was personal, and so much of his campaign firepower was built on his oodles of connections to the Trudeau machine, that Layton ought to cruise home with an enlarged margin this time. He'll get no landslide, mind you--the demographics simply aren't there--and he'll still clock in the lowest plurality of all the major party leaders, but a win is a win, and this time the NDP will have a lot more troops free to throw at B-EY, T-S, and P-HP.
||06 05 05
|While Layton got a scare last time, it was because he was up against a strong Liberal (although out of place due to his socially conservative views). However, this time it will be different. Dennis Mills would make a big mistake running here in a riding dominated by social activists and against a fresh NDP leader. The Conservatives are not even on the radar screen and may finish 4th behind the Green Party. While not the safest leader, he should get more votes than Paul Martin in Lasalle-Emard. Predicted results: NDP 54%, LIB 30%, CPC 7%, GRN 7%, others 2%.|
||04 05 05
|I assume that Jack Layton will win this riding easier than he did last time because he is now the incumbent MP and he has a higher national profile from being NDP leader and being in Parliament for the past year and being on the news every week. If he didn't lose last year when he had less visibility and experience, why would he lose this time?|
||30 10 05
|With current liberal polling in Ontario, Mills won't waste his time running again, at least not this one. Jack has been more visible in his riding than any of the other national leaders in their constituencies. He should have a cake walk in Riverdale and will likely improve on his skimpy 2004 results in East York. The Tories will likely make more of a dent than their past lame duck candidate, Loftus Cuddy who was no match for heavy weights like Layton and Mills. Expect Jack to win by AT LEAST 25%.|
||02 05 05
|Actually, I think Jack has an even better chance of winning against Mills than against a new Liberal candidate. Let's face it, last years thousands of people who normally vote Liberal refused to vote for Mills because of his extreme socially conservative views which were so ridiculously out of step with a hip riding like Toronto-Danforth. It should be a no-brainer for Liberals that you do NOT insult voters in a riding like this by running a vacious gay-hater like Mills who is also anti-abortion and circulates Christmas cards of himself kneeling in front of the Pope!!|
I'm sure Jack will win again no matter what, but if the new Liberal candidate is a mainstream progressive Liberal and not a rightwing whacko like Mills - a lot of "Liberals for Layton" may revert to their old party.
||01 05 05
|If Jack Layton could defeat popular liberal MP Dennis Mills, then he will have no trouble winning this time. The fact he actually played a role in propping up the liberal government will mean many would be NDP voters who switched to the liberals to stop Stephen Harper will likely go NDP this time around. The bigger question is will his wife Olivia Chow run again in Trinity-Spadina and will she succeed this time around.|
||26 04 05
|This prediction only works if Dennis Mills doesn't run again. If he does, then there's going to be another close race. If he doesn't, then the riding is Jack's for as long as he wants it.|