Election Prediction Project

British Columbia Provincial Election - 2017


Prediction Changed
2017-05-08 20:42:04

Constituency Profile



Bidgood, Bruce Alan

Ritchie, Merv

Ross, Ellis

Robin Austin

Population (2014):30240
Deviation from average:-43.10%
Geographical Area:31610 sq km
2013 Election Result
Robin Austin*
Carol Joan Leclerc
Mike Brousseau
Trevor Hendry
Previous Prediction - 2013 Provincial Election
Previous Prediction - 2009 Provincial Election


05/05/2017 David
With only three days to go in the election process, Christy Clark is spending time in the Skeena riding. The locals believe that this is a riding that the Liberals can win with their star candidate Ellis Ross. The NDP candidate was horribly unpopular when he was on Terrace City Council.
29/04/2017 GT
Mr Bidgood won a well-contested nomination against 3 very capable local candidates. Mr Ross is a good fit for the Liberals, but was chosen by Christie Clark alone, thus silencing the voices of local Liberals in any choice of who they thought might best represent the constituency rather than the Liberal party. Although Mr Bidgood may have a considerable edge with respect to experience, Mr Ross's campaign is very well funded by Liberal coffers.
28/04/2017 David
The Skeena riding is an almost certain 'pick up' for the BC Liberals. Ellis Ross is one of the star group of candidates that have been recruited by the BC Liberal Party.
29/04/2017 hay sting
Ross was a good choice for the BC Liberals for sure. This could be the closest northern riding come May 9.
I think there is some oversimplification though when considering a First Nations candidate. Ears close to the ground tell me that there are plenty of Haisla not happy with LNG projects, not thrilled about Ross's bid nor likely to get on board with the BCL party because he is running with them. The Kitimat/Terrace divide is fairly well documented. But in fact, it could flip a little bit this time with these candidates. Combined with the more complicated truth that First Nations voters aren't likely to flip to BCL en masse, I call a very narrow NDP victory. But watch this one on election night
29/04/2017 DB
Two good candidates and a third (Merv Ritchie, Land, Air and Water Party) interesting candidate.
It has been many years since this riding has had such strong candidates. Bruce Bidgood (NDP) is solid and able to champion a wide range of opportunities. While, Ellis Ross is a solid leader who has been successful in advancing Haisla aspirations during the Rio Tinto expansion and as part of LNG investigations. It is Ellis' riding to loose and he might do that. So far Ellis has been solely focused on the LNG file and has not been able to articulate other opportunities for the area. His answer to social issues, education and other question are all answered with LNG is the answer.
This will be a close riding but will likely end up going to the Liberal candidate Ellis Ross. I think there will be enough people in Kitimat hoping for LNG combined with the usual liberal vote in Terrace that it will tip to the liberals this time around.
26/04/2017 South Islander
T.C.'s analysis is spot regarding local factors (some of which I had no knowledge). In the campaign, the NDP strategy seems to be to focus on the Lower Mainland. Perhaps they are willing to risk losing their lone vulnerable seat in the North - where they have lost a ton of ground since 2009 - to focus on more concentrated winnable districts. The BCLs are clearly doing the work to reinforce support in the North. We are all holding our collective breath to see if the BCL manage to pull off another province-wide win (I think they will). Regardless of how that goes, I'm starting to think they will win here.
23/04/2017 T.C.
2013 transposed riding result:
BC NDP: 47.7%
BC Liberal: 43.3%
BCCP: 6.8%
BC Party (right-wing): 2.2%
The BC NDP won this seat by a 4.4% margin in 2013. However, both the BCCP & BC Party had a combined 9% vote share here in 2013 and they will not be running candidates in Skeena in 2017. This 9% vote share will likely flow to the BC Liberals in 2017.
Incumbent BC NDP MLA Robin Austin will not be running in 2017, which precludes any 'incumbency' effect. The BC NDP have nominated an instructor in social work from a local college, which I believe is not a 'good fit' in a heavily resource dependent community - forestry, mining, and proposed LNG projects.
Major preliminary construction work has commenced in Bish Cove for the proposed Chevron LNG project near Kitimat as well as Shell's proposed LNG facility in Kitimat, which is expected to proceed in 2018. Terrace is also a major airport/staging area for these proposed projects.
The BC NDP has given signals that they are opposed to both LNG projects as well as proposed nat gas pipelines feeding these projects.
High-profile Haisla FN chief Ellis Ross is the BC Liberal candidate and major proponent of these LNG projects proposals. Kitselas FN chief Joe Bevan was also at Ellis Ross' nomination meeting endorsing Ross. Interesting to note that in their respective FN polling stations in 2013 - the FN vote was geared heavily toward the BC NDP. That may change in 2017 as well.
Finally also interesting to note that, almost half-way through the 2017 campaign, BC NDP leader Horgan has not made any campaign appearances/stops in either central or northern BC.
All the data points suggest that the BC Liberals will pick-up this riding for the first time since 2001.
17 03 08 South Islander
If the NDP only held this district by 4% with an incumbent last time, it's a tossup as an open seat. The BCL have a great candidate in Ellis Ross and a head start.
17 01 14 Jack Cox
This is a seat the NDP needs to hold if they are going to retain government, this has always been a very close race and with a retiring incumbent it might be difficult to hold.

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