“Small parties generally have a hard time in FPTP systems. But to change the system, you first have to beat the system. And in doing so, a little math and politics-fiction can’t hurt. It all starts with a little imagination.” –Philippe J. Fournier
A new 338Canada analysis shows the ‘Green Democrats’ would hold the balance of power in a minority government after the next election
Singh speaks following the tabling of the federal budget in Ottawa on Tuesday, March 19, 2019. (David Kawai/Bloomberg via Getty Images)
Here is an interesting exercise of politics-fiction. What if the NDP and Green Party decided that they have more in common than they have differences? With the recent success of the PC and Wildrose merger in Alberta, would it be so unreasonable to imagine what a Green Party-NDP merger could look like?
Let’s call them the Green Democrats.
I entered the numbers in the 338 electoral model and made the following hypotheses:
- Most of the current NDP and Green support would remain with the Green Democrats
- The Green Democrats would have a higher appeal among younger, urban and educated demographics (which is, statistically at least, already the case for the GPC and NDP)
- Neither Elizabeth May nor Jagmeet Singh would lead the new party.
Here are the results.
According to current data and with the hypotheses formulated above, the hypothetical Green Democrats would get an average support just under 27 per cent (roughly the combined support of the GPC and NDP). The confidence intervals range from roughly 23 per cent to 31 per cent of support.
The Green Democrats would still likely fall in third place behind the Conservatives and Liberals, but the race at the top would become far more competitive.
[Results based on the data from the 338 Electoral Projection of April 21st 2019.]
With this level of support, how would this theoretical new party fare in the seat projection? This is where it gets interesting. Here are the numbers.
By running the 338 electoral model with the numbers above, the Green Democrats would win an average of 59 seats, more than twice the current combined seat projections for the NDP and GPC.
What is perhaps more striking is that neither the Conservatives nor the Liberals stand at an average above the 170-seat threshold for a majority at the House of Commons. In fact, more than 80 per cent of all 250,000 simulations run by the model resulted in a minority government where the Green Democrats hold the balance of power. MORE