|I originally saw this as a pretty easy PC pickup, but I'm going to go out on a limb and say that, provided the NDP surge is real and persistent, this is a legitimate target for them. The CBC Poll Tracker is showing a tie between the PCs and NDP in Southwestern Ontario, which probably would result in a PC sweep of rural areas and NDP wins in most urban/industrial seats. Cambridge is more wealthy and Conservative than it used to be, but it's not lost its working class roots. Also, as others have pointed out, the PC nomination was a mess. I'd say the NDP wins a close one, with the Liberal incumbent running a fairly distant third.|
|The P.C candidate for Cambridge is under investigation for illegal donations from her husband and his group, who the P.C. Party took to court because of his seeming illegal activities. The NDP lead in South West Ontario and this is fall to the Orange wave|
|There certainly seems to be a swing towards the NDP in SW Ontario. The most recent poll has them 6 points ahead of the PC (remains to be seen if this continues) but all polls say they're competitive. With PC support concentrated in rural areas, and Liberal support flocking to the NDP in urban areas, we could see NDP winning in places that would otherwise be considered laughable. I'm watching for this trend in Cambridge.|
|This is the area I grew up in and I honestly can't see the Ontario Liberals winning this time around. Look for the PCs to win this one back.|
|A very interesting riding, but very little Liberal history here and no matter what went right or wrong with the Tory nomination process, the average voter doesn't care. Anything the Liberals held onto (or picked up) in the 905 with less than 40% of the vote is in very serious jeopardy. This riding is most likely to go with the general trend this time, towards the PC's.|
|No kidding about Reagan Democracy; Cambridge even resisted 1987's Peterson sweep on behalf of the NDP's Mike Farnan instead, yet it was also in the top tier of 'likely' federal Reform pickups in 1993--no wonder McGarry's third-time-lucky victory was such a vivid emblem of 2014's OLP inroads in hitherto fallow places. But beyond McGarry's own strengths and doggedness, Cambridge *has* been 'GTA'ing' itself on Lib-friendly behalf for some time; and if it's still working class, so is much of Lib-friendly Brampton and Mississauga. Well, Lib-friendly until now. And given how this is Cambridge (and SW Ontario in general), one still cannot factor the NDP out of the picture--sure, demos have been changing, but the party still managed over a quarter of the federal vote in 2011, and their provincial mean has remained not far below that despite McGarry. (At least the perennially underperforming Bobbi Stewart isn't bearing their standard this time.)|
|Jim Karahalios' wife won the nomination here yesterday, unexpectedly.|
If the nomination process had been normal for the Tories, I would have said they would be a shoo-in here. MF is right about the demographics here. This is not a typical Liberal riding (though Gerry Martiniuk, who held this riding for twenty years, was Red Tory), and McGarry's win in 2014 was a surprise.
With the absolutely bizarre nomination process, and the controversial choice of Karahalios, the Liberals have a fighting chance of holding on to this one.
|Contrary to what some posters have written, Cambridge is still very much a working class riding. Only 18% have university degrees. 20% work in manufacturing. If this isn't a working class riding I don't know what is.|
This has already been a pretty 'Reagan Democrat' type area fo a long time. It was lost in the Hudak debacle. With the Liberals down in the polls and Doug Ford's populist message, this should be pretty low hanging fruit for the PCs.
Now it's possible that Tanya Granic Allen would be 'too controversial' but Cambridge has elected social conservatives and creationists to office before (remember Gary Goodyear?)
|The local Conservatives have been in disarray here. They have canceled 2 nomination meetings. And latest rumour is Tanya Granic Allen is going to be parachuted in.|
McGarry's remains quite popular locally and should be able to hold this seat no matter who the Tories end up picking as their candidate.
|Do you really think the local PCs are going to welcome Tanya Granic-Allen with open arms when there are two local candidates selling memberships and actively campaigning? I think dumping her here will cause more trouble than it's worth.|
|Now that Elliott is running in Toronto, Granic-Allen will almost certainly get the nomination here.|
|Craig, have you seen the polling data in Southwestern Ontario? The Liberals are headed for an historic rout in the region. They'll be lucky to even save Guelph. Worst region in the province for the Liberals by a considerable margin, and the Brown debacle hasn't budged the numbers. I've seen little evidence of Wynne's popularity among more educated individuals, particularly outside of the downtown Toronto bubble. I can believe that she is 'less unpopular' than she is among lower-income people, but it is all relative and ultimately insignificant given the predominant trends. Cambridge goes PC by at least 10 points.|
|Word is that Granic-Allen and Elliott are eyeing this riding should they win, and even if she does not win, Elliott is seems somewhat likely to run here. Should either of these 3 things happen, the tories would win.|
|Historically, yes, this was a blue collar riding. However, the growth of the technology sector in Waterloo Region, as well as commuters to Peel Region jobs, have changed this riding considerably even in the last 10-15 years. It is much more educated than it has ever been as well. Hence this is now more like Mississauga than Windsor, Sarnia or even Oshawa.|
For those reasons, I'd call this seat a tossup. Both sides will really be hungry, and as the demographics continue to change, the NDP will likely falter even more. That should help McGarry who could overcome even a stronger PC vote, but at the same time the appetite for change may be too strong. Wynne continues to be somewhat popular among white-collar, educated voters, so there is that factor too.
|I don't think there's been enough backlash against the PCs, at least not from what we've seen just yet, to suggest that the Conservatives won't be able to pick this one up. The only thing that might save the Liberals is the candidate, who seems relatively popular. But the unpopularity of the party and the growth of PC popularity is going to be really tough for the incumbent. All that being said, never underestimate the advantage of incumbency. I predict a PC win but this could be a close one.|
|An Oshawa/Windsor type blue-collar town. Given the small winning Liberal margins in 2014 prov and 2015 fed, not a chance this doesn't flip regardless of leader. The lack of NDP history here makes the Liberals more competitive than they should be but it won't be enough.|
|Kathryn McCarry had been very visible in the riding ever since being elected and is seen as being a hard worker and good MPP.|
This could be the one riding the Liberals are able to keep in Southwest Ontario.
|One of the big strikes against the PCs could be if they nominate Tanya Khattra. She's a dentist who has allegedly been living and practicing in Calgary. Her links with Cambridge seem tenuous at best.|
|This narrowly went Liberal both federally and provincially, but last provincial election Wynne was not nearly as unpopular as now and Hudak ran a terrible campaign while federally people were sick of Harper and Trudeau is far more popular than Wynne. So unless the PCs do something really stupid like promise to fire 100,000 civil servants I expect them to retake this.|