Rachel Notley is driving voters to the NDP — but not many United Conservatives.

In arresting former MLA Blake Pederson Validationthe New Democrats claim to be one of the most well-traveled political animals in Alberta.

He was elected as the Wildrose MLA in Medicine Hat in 2012 alongside then-leader Daniel Smith. Pedersen did the same when she defected to Jim Prentice’s Progressive Conservatives, and was then politically endorsed by the same party in 2015.

Between then and 2023, it has spent most of its time. Alberta Party Supportwho is not running in Pederson’s current riding, or in 78 percent of Alberta constituencies.

Another former MLA who has been pulled the plug by the NDP is former PC minister Doug Griffiths. Ever since Jason Kenney formed that party, he wanted nothing to do with the UCP, and he was. established their loyalties. with the Alberta Party So far.

During the campaign and for months leading up to it, Rachel Notley’s party bent himself in blue colors. He hoped to appeal to a mass of undecided ex-Tories who felt Smith was too much for their tastes, and to build a large enough part of Kenny’s 2019 UCP base to win.

New polling suggests the NDP has largely failed to capture these wayward conservatives. What they have succeeded in doing, however, is absorbing all the former Alberta Party voters who had nowhere to go after the faction faded into relative obscurity.

A new CBC News Janet Brown Opinion Research poll has Smith’s party among leaning and decided voters across the province at 52 per cent, compared to 44 per cent for Notleys, and one per cent for the Alberta Party. The same goes for some other smaller parties.

Compare that to the 2019 election results: 54.9 percent UCP, 32.7 NDP, 9.1 percent with the Alberta Party winning no seats.

To judge from Brown’s polling, Smith has hemorrhaged Notley by a few points, but in the most binary election in Alberta in generations, the vaguely centrist AP option is almost entirely orange this year. Going into the ring.

The center-right is united behind the UCP, and now the center-left is fully united behind the NDP. This is Alberta, so it’s nowhere near an even match.

It looks like the UCP’s relentless focus on the economy and taxes — and playing on stereotypes of how the NDP handles things — may keep the Kenney coalition together. Albertans may have enough to counter all the nastiness with his 2021 comments about Smith and his party likening vaccine advocates to blithering Germans. Let Nazism riseto the Ethics Commissioner’s Report Finding it in violation For the 2023 attempt to intervene in the judicial system, and description of transgender children by the UCP candidate. Dehumanizing terms.

On Thursday, two more popular conservatives fell behind the UCP in hopes of strengthening the right-leaning coalition and keeping the base energized.

When the party posted the federal leader Pierre Poilever. Verification videoit used the tagline “Let’s Bring It Home”, while former Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s ring was displayed at a rally on Thursday.

Jason Kenney’s UCP won 55 percent of Alberta’s vote in 2019, and won a landslide majority. Smith’s party has 52 percent of the vote in the latest Janet Brown poll, but remaining voters rallying behind the NDP will make little difference in winning seats. (Jeff McIntosh/The Canadian Press)

It can only be a temporary, fragile coalition around a leader who has created many headaches at the candidate’s doorstep; But this is a party that looks united at the end of the campaign.

And the leadership responsibility appears to have cut both ways in the polls, with Smith and Notley tied with 42 percent approval in Brown’s poll.

Battlefield, as usual

In Calgary, Notley’s name still means more (or hurts the brand less) than Smith’s, according to Brown’s poll — five points for the NDP leader in and around Alberta’s largest city. with, according to Brown’s poll.

And with a margin of just three points in Calgary, there are signs that the NDP has done more than win over all former Alberta party voters, but also eaten into the UCP margin.

The race has tightened since Brown’s last subscribers-only poll — which someone did. Leaked on post media.apparently hoping to derail the narrative around an NDP-friendly election.

Over the past few weeks in May, UCP’s lead in the Calgary area has gone from 12 points to three. Because that regional subset includes satellite towns where the NDP barely shows up, like Okotoks, Airdrie and Chestermere, the two parties could be closer in Calgary, the election’s grand prize of 26 seats.

But a draw or draw likely translates into a clean victory for the UCP, as the seat tally means the NDP needs to dominate Alberta’s largest city by a landslide in order for Smith to take the rural seat. And dozens of sets in rural areas have a chance to overcome a large firewall. Small town Alberta.

Rachel Notley at one lecture, watching Daniel Smith on the other, as Smith points at his opponent without looking at her.
Everyone wants a piece of the old Tory/UCP blue vote, and Notley and Smith played up that part in last week’s debate. (CBC/YouTube screenshot)

Of course, this is just a poll, albeit one of the most admired pollsters in Alberta. And skeptics and pro-NDP optimists may question some of the unusual results within the polls, among 18- to 24-year-old Albertans (57 percent to 36 percent, a reversal of general population trends). shows a large lead for UCP. , but this is a small sample of 142 in a survey of 1,200 people.

But the gap between first and second, center-right and center-left remains wide, and has been so in many publicly released polls.

The United Conservative coalition that Kenney built, and then lost control of, appears to have been unscathed, with Smith’s broadly appealing economic stances proving more important than his other top NDP positions. surrounded by emergency flash beacons.

With Smith, the Wildrose movement has tapped into enough of the old Progressive Conservative base to not object that the disaffected types who previously flirted with the Alberta Party are now the New Democrats.

CBC News’ random survey of 1,200 Albertans was conducted between May 12 and 24 by Edmonton-based Trend Research using a hybrid method. Janet Brown’s opinion research. The sample is representative of regional, age and gender factors. The margin of error is +/- 2.8 percentage points, 19 out of 20 times. For subsets, the margin of error is larger.

The survey used a hybrid method of contacting survey respondents by telephone and giving them the option to complete the survey at that time, at a more convenient time, or to receive an email link and complete the survey online. was included. Trend Research contacted people using a random list of numbers, including both landlines and cell phone numbers. Telephone numbers were dialed five times at five different times of the day before another telephone number was added to the sample. The response rate was 5.35 percent.

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