federal election

Congratulations to Linda Duncan

Linda Duncan is smart, experienced, and hard-working. She's one of Canada's most prominent environmentalists, and of course she's also now the Member of Parliament for Edmonton-Strathcona!

A couple of weeks ago, I gave her a one in a hundred chance of taking the riding (after all, this is Alberta).  The weekend before the election, though, I started to really think she might have a chance.  The clue came in my mailbox in the form of an insulting-to-the-intelligence postcard dropped off by the Rahim Jaffer campaign.  The message basically amounted to "the NDP thinks that car thieves shouldn't go to jail".  The fact that Jaffer was using the logic of a nine-year-old in a negative ad like that indicated to me that he was running scared.

The public tantrum and last-gasp cry for attention that followed from Jaffer just confirmed that the people of Edmonton-Strathcona made the right choice.

I wouldn't be surprised to see Duncan be named the NDP's environment critic.  Her election is a refreshing dot of orange in a province that was supposed to be a sea of blue this time around. Thank you to Edmonton-Strathcona voters for making an environmentally-sound choice of representatives, and congratulations to Linda Duncan!

Duncan vs. Jaffer = Green vs. Same-Old

DemocraticSPACE's latest projection for Edmonton-Strathcona

Close Race

The people at DemocraticSPACE are currently predicting a win for the NDP's Linda Duncan in Edmonton-Strathcona. I haven't looked closely into their methods, but it illustrates the point that Edmonton-Strathcona is Alberta's best chance at electing a non-Conservative.

Everyone in Edmonton except for Liberal candidate Claudette Roy knows that voting anything but NDP in Edmonton-Strathcona is voting for Rahim Jaffer to win the election. As an aside, Roy's pamphlet, delivered to my door recently, is a shameful piece of misleading, self-serving garbage. If you have to be that intellectually dishonest to run the race, Ms. Roy, then maybe it's not worth running at all.

Anyhow, momentum is building for Linda Duncan's campaign. Some Liberals have started a blog: Liberals for Linda, and the media is pegging this as a very close race.

Jaffer's Conservatives, may I point out, are as pollution-loving as they come. They don't take climate change seriously, and they generally won't touch any initiative that has a positive environmental impact.

Call To Action

So here's my plea: email and call everyone you know in Edmonton-Strathcona this weekend. Tell them how close this race is, and how important it is that they vote for Linda Duncan on October 14. And then go cast the green vote on Tuesday yourself. Let's make some history on Tuesday!

Federal Election 2008 : Voting for the Environment

There are tough times for green voters this upcoming federal election. The Conservatives, who are almost certain to win at least a term as a minority government, are a disaster on the environment. Instead of going into specifics, I'll direct you to the Sierra Club of Canada's Voters’ Guide to the Climate Crisis Election (pdf file). It gives the Conservatives a big fat F+ on the environment, by far the worst grade of any political party.

And please don't assume that this is a partisan analysis. I'm a green voter. Brian Mulroney was a green Prime Minister, and I would happily support Stephen Harper if he was too. He's just not. In fact, he just recently started to pretend to believe that climate change is real.

So what is a treehugging Edmontonian to do? The answer, if you live in Edmonton-Strathcona, is to vote for the NDP's Linda Duncan.  Longtime Reform/Alliance/Conservative incumbent Rahim Jaffer is regularly outvoted, but because the left-of-Jaffer vote is split three ways, he keeps getting the seat. Let's get this straight right now: the only legitimate anti-Jaffer vote is a Linda Duncan vote. In a highly annoying move, the Liberal candidate has been spending big dollars in her futile attempt to mine the NDP's considerable Strathcona vote base.

The fact is, the NDP vote has been increasing for four elections in a row. Here's the NDP vote versus Jaffer's:

NDP votes vs. Conservative votes, Edmonton-Strathcona

In 2006, Linda Duncan got about 17,000 votes, Jaffer got 22,000, and the Liberals got a bit over 9000 votes.

If you live in Edmonton-Strathcona, and you don't want to vote for Jaffer, please vote NDP. Linda Duncan has the best hope out of anyone in Alberta of beating a Conservative. It's maybe one in a hundred, but it is a chance.

Plus, Duncan is a longtime environmentalist. She's widely respected in her field, and she would make a strong voice for the environment in Parliament.

If you live elsewhere in Edmonton, your vote will be mostly wasted, because the Conservatives are going to slaughter everyone. I would vote Green, because it makes the party more legitimate, and they will get $1.50 more because of your vote due to Canada's public financing rules.