Christy Clark faces a bigger risk than B.C. voters if Adrian Dix stays in front in the polls

More than halfway into their third term, it's clear that the B.C. Liberals and their leader, Christy Clark, are in serious political trouble.

A recent poll by Forum Research Inc. showed that the B.C. Conservatives under former MP John Cummins had caught up to the B.C. Liberals.

Each had 23 percent popularity, whereas the B.C. NDP was well ahead with 34 percent support from British Columbians.

If these numbers hold up until the May 2013 election, it would probably result in an NDP majority under Adrian Dix.

In light of this, it's not surprising that the B.C. Liberals have responded with a negative TV and online campaign targeted at Dix.

Through its riskydix.ca website, the governing party is trying to convey to the public that electing the NDP carries some risk. The use of unflattering black-and-white photos and claiming that the opponent isn't "coming clean" are standard tactics used by governing parties when they're behind.

Why now? The real risk for the B.C. Liberals is if their traditional supporters feel there's no downside in abandoning them.

This is what happened to the Social Credit Party in 1991 when a viable non-NDP party emerged in the form of the B.C. Liberals. The Socreds were virtually obliterated because the public felt there was no risk in voting for the other party.

Two years later, the same fate befell the federal Progressive Conservatives when their traditional supporters felt there was no risk in voting Reform.

We saw it again in 2001 when NDP supporters abandoned the party en masse to vote for the B.C. Greens. This left the NDP with just two seats in the legislature after the election.

If the next poll shows the B.C. Conservatives running ahead of the B.C. Liberals, then the wheels are probably about to start falling off Clark's party in the same way.

People who don't like the NDP will figure that the best way to stop them will be to transfer their allegiance to Cummins, and he'll probably start gaining more momentum.

This will convince some B.C. Liberal MLAs to sit out the next campaign, making it more difficult for Clark to hold onto existing seats. She'll also have trouble recruiting high-profile candidates, who won't want to be associated with any pending electoral disaster.

If this scenario plays itself out, B.C. Liberals funders will start hedging their bets by giving more money to the B.C. Conservatives.

Clark had better remain on good terms with the management at CKNW Radio because the way things are going for her now, she just might need her old job about 18 months from now.

Comments (32) Add New Comment
richard stewart
I'm holding my nose and voting Conservative, so the polls sound about rigtht to me.

Fast ferry NDP and BC Rail Liberals blew it. At least stay accountable to the voters. TransLink is another gem - the next scandal.
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DR
Christy Clark is a woman without substance and her actions are an insult to the intelligence of the people of this province. Witness the recent awarding of the shipbuilding contract to Seaspan. Here is a company that worked years on this project and undoubtedly spent millions of dollars in doing so. And when they deservedly won it there was Chisty front and center taking all the credit for something which she had nothing to do with. Deplorable.
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Clive
This dishonest, lying bunch deserve to go down in flames. Unfortunately they can continue doing a lot more damage between now and the next election.
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Mad Cathy
Christy Clarke and Alison Redford must be sisters. They are both Nuns and pass unfair Nanny Laws. They both passed a law that will charge you with drunk driving after 1 glass of wine (.05%). They have gone to far with their Nanny Laws!
Vote them out or suffer Nanny laws for years.....
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ds
Christy says, families first and then turns around and gives over a billion in contracts to Alberta based electrical contractors who's parent company is in Texas. Then has these American smart meters installed, laying off meter readers. All the taxes that should have stayed here are gone along with the money that is not spent here. And it's FAMILIES FIRST. Souinds like another Gordy boy move to me.
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Arthur Vandelay
The only scare campaign that the Liberals need is to remind people of the Glen Clark government of which Mr. Dix was an integral member. I find it beyond hysterical that the same champions of Mr. Dix endlessly rail about Liberal lying. Apparently writing for or reading the Straight causes nasty cases of amnesia or hypocracy.
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glen p robbins
Campbell set the timer on the bomb in 2009.

Nobody can do the shake (like I do) nobody can do the shing a ling (like I do) Nobody -- nobody but me.
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RonS
Clark is an airhead, period! This corrupt government has so much to hide, I can wait to help defeat them whenever they have an election. Then let the investigations begin into the corruption that is the LIbERalS!

I think airhead is a misnomer, there's only a vacuum between her ears!
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Maxthegood
Mr Dix's NDP have lust in their hearts when they look at the current economic structure of our fair province. They would love to get their mitts on the well stocked coffers, spend us into another budget downward spiral, raise our taxes, and bring back their huge, and wildly inefficient, public sector employment bonanza. Jobs for the union boys! They want to banish the profit motive and bring “the means of production and distribution” in BC under government ownership. If you think that’s a scare tactic, read their party constitution! The NDP, particularly now that they are led by Mr Dix, are motivated by jealousy, resentment and the militancy of the radical left economic movements of the 1960s.
Dix has falsified government documents in the highest offices of the Province, misled a police investigation and orchestrated a web of lies about the Fudge It Budget - remember that one? The thought of an NDP majority with 34% of the vote - by splitting the non-socialist electorate - is the stuff of nighmares!
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Alfred E. Neuman
"Study: states that legalized medical pot see decrease in traffic fatalities, beer sales"! (The Missoulian, 28 Dec. Missoula, Montana)
Researchers "discovered a 9 percent decrease in traffic fatalities in states that passed laws legalizing medical marijuana" and "beer sales in these states dipped 5 percent after medical marijuana was legalized."
http://missoulian.com/news/state-and-regional/study-states-that-legalize...

Since the B.C. Provincial Government and Justice system insist on violating our Charter of Rights and Freedoms (for six months or more) in the interest of Public Safety if a policy reduces traffic fatalities (as well as alcohol-consumption & drunk-driving) then we should also demand equally forceful legislation for Legal Medical Marijuana in 2012!
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monty/that'sme
There is no credibility left among Christy and her special pals: Bond. Falcon, deJong and others whose names are forgotten. Premier Dosanjh left $1.6 billion in the Treasury==a fact the Liberals and the MainStreamMedia fail to mention.
If Glen Clark was such a disaster how come he has emerged as President of Pattison Industries? Pattison is Board Chair.
How much taxpayer money is being spent on this series of attack ads?
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Relayer
Dix has publicly promised to hold an inquiry into the corrupt sale of BC Rail. It'll be worth one term of the NDP to see Gordon and Christy led away in handcuffs, so I'm voting NDP. Besides, Cummins and the BC Conservatives just aren't ready yet to form gov't.
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Ben
Thank god the NDP might have a fighting chance to start turning around the runaway train that was brought up to full steam under Gordo. Glen Clark was a long time ago, and frankly he didn't have half the charisma of Mr. Dix, and he had more integrity than any Liberal (which isn't saying much). What disturbs me most is the rise of provincial "Conservativism" - this we can certainly do without, federally and provincially. Go NDP!
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Lawson1945
Christy Clark is in trouble but not because of Dix
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Royce Schmidt
So are folks going to take a "left turn" just because they do not like Christy Clark and and Liberals or because you truly believe we will be better off with the NDP in charge?....Quite frankly an NDP government scares me.....They would increase pay and benefits to their "loyalists" and drive many other jobs out of the province....
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Van Fitz
So I have to ask Arthur Vandelay and Richard Stewart: with regard to the Glen Clark NDP, is it really true that the only stones you have to hurl at them are the fast ferries and Glen Clark's deck? Really? So the Fast Cats went over budget; at least that money went to a BC shipyard employing BC workers. I'll take that over the RAV line importing workers. And the deck "scandal"? On the continuum of political quid pro quo, this barely registers when weighed against the economic growth and progressive policy decisions during that administration.

BC as a whole was much better off under the Clark NDP, and the legacy of the Gordon/Clark Liberals will be increased economic disparity, environmental degradation and the mass sell-off of profitable public assets to their corporate cronies.
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vampires are real
You'd better believe it that she's going down! And take her good for nothing side kick from Global with her. Waste of taxpayer dollars having her around.
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Arthur Vandelay
The amount of stones that could be thrown at the Glen Clark regime is infinite and are known to everyone thats at least 50 years old and not mentally deficient. For anyone who needs refreshing, the only thing you need to know is that regime was judged by the electorate to be the worst government in BC history and the second worst in Canadian provincial history.
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Loretta
This arguments seems plausible and I certainly agree with the sentiment. However, when the author states " in 2001 when NDP supporters abandoned the party en masse to vote for the B.C. Greens" he undermines his credibility with me. In fact, had NDP supporters voted for the B.C. Greens in the numbers he suggests here, the Green Party would have taken some of the remaining 77 seats.
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Martha
B.C. Liberals are teabaggers in disguise....all for corporations (who own them) and killing the middle class. The HST, then Gordo's appointment from his buddy Harper proved that. Never has any "Liberal" organization been so in bed with the Conservatives.....there is no daylight between them.
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