Saturday, October 29, 2011

POLITICAL HAPPENINGS IN SASKATCHEWAN: FEDERAL MPs ROMEO SAGANASH, RALPH GOODALE IN NORTHWEST

Who would think that northwest Saskatchewan would be such a popular place for the politicians to visit these days?

Earlier this week we had a visit from Romeo Saganash, a northern Quebec MP and a candidate to succeed Jack Layton in the hotly-competitive federal NDP leadership race. My story on his visit to the region and his candidacy can be found here. I also understand one of the other leadership candidates, Paul Dewar, was also in Saskatchewan, campaigning with the local NDP in Regina. So a lot of NDPers have been coming here to get their message out.

As well, the local Liberals are pulling out all the stops trying to help leader Ryan Bater capture the Battlefords seat in the provincial election. They brought in Ralph Goodale for a press conference with Bater, where they talked about their policies to reign in spending. I am also told by the campaign that they have another big name planned to come to the area before the week is out. I leave it to you to speculate -- it is a very big name, indeed.

The Liberals have also lodged a complaint over one of the NDP campaign offices. The NDP call the complaint frivolous.

As for the rest of the race, two polls came out showing Brad Wall and the Saskatchewan Party way ahead. 

One poll had them at 60 percent while the other had them as high as 66 percent, which is really ridiculous. That would put them in Alberta PC/Peter Lougheed-type territory if true. The televised debate wasn't up to much either, most people say they didn't bother to tune in.

This really is starting to look like a runaway and the only question now is whether the NDP can salvage a respectable contingent of caucus members after November 7. Jordon Cooper at his blog had a good rundown on the problems the NDP is facing in this campaign.

I fully expect a lot of provincial election activity in the coming week around here, so stay tuned for links to more of my stories from the campaign.

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