"We can't allow things that are inaccurate to stand." — The Word of Our Dan, February 19, 2008.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

63towin (I)

As a treat for recovering election junkies who are wondering, post-federal, post-Nunavut, post-American, post-New Zealand elections what to do for their next fix… two words: Quebec.

Election. Quebec election.

This corner has a special weakness for Quebec electoral politics, which has some of the most interesting electoral math and electoral geography in the country. (Watch your backs, though, Nova Scotia’s gaining fast.)

Quebec also has the added attraction of absolutely exquisite electoral data publication, broken down beautifully by municipality, and, in the past decade, made available, in a timely manner, and in digital form, to election nerds.

Running the latest Léger poll through the soopersekrit Calcutron 2008, yields the following projection for seats in the National Assembly, if — this is the important part — if the poll numbers were the final popular vote when everything is counted.

How to read this graph: the saturated colour bars show the number of seats that each party would be expected to win by a margin of five percent or more. In this case, the Léger poll conducted over the weekend would be expected to result in 54 Liberal (PLQ) MNAs elected by at least that margin, while there would be 43 Péquistes.

In between the saturated bars, there are two paler-coloured bars which show the expected narrow races, where the result is projected to be less than five percent between the parties on either side. In this case, there are 19 such electoral districts with notionally close races between the PLQ and PQ, in which the PQ has the edge in 13, and the PLQ in six.

There are also, on these numbers, four notionally three-way races, in which the first-place party and third-place party are separated by ten percent or less.

Given the implosion of ADQ support, they are currently projecting few seats or even competitive races. If they were (or end up) polling higher, you would expect a similar set of dark and light bars to emerge showing the solid and marginal ADQ leads. To illustrate what such a race would look like, here are the actual results from the 2007 election, which resulted in a minority PLQ government, graphed in the same way:

There were 38 solid PLQ seats (won by more than five percent), 32 ADQ, and 24 PQ. There were eight close PQ-PLQ races, of which the Péquistes won six and the Liberals two. There were eight close PQ-ADQ races, of which the ADQ took five and the PQ three. There was one close PLQ victory over the ADQ. And finally, fourteen electoral districts saw the winner and the third-place candidates separated by less than ten percent.

Finally, here is the projection that would have resulted from the previous Léger poll numbers, published in late October on the eve of the election call:


At 9:52 PM, November 12, 2008 , Blogger Mark said...

Now I'm cheering for Quebec solidaire to gain popular votes and seats, if for no other reasons than to force you to show us a three dimensional model and deprive you of even more sleep.


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