A week from today, Manitoba goes to the polls to elect a new government. Unlike Saskatchewan, where that phrase simply means "re-elect the current government", here in Manitoba, they actually will elect a new government. The PC Party will take office (unless the polls are so wrong that their errors in Alberta and BC will look like 'widdo booboos') The election of Brian Pallister will mark an end to the period that started with the election of Dwight Ball in Newfoundland; a period of time where no government party in Canada has the name "Conservative" in it's name.
My current prediction is as follows:
The NDP "fringe"
These are the ridings still painted Orange that had the Blue X in them in my earlier map. The PC Party has momentum, and if that continues, they could take these ridings.
On the numbers, this riding should go Liberal, but Rana Bokhari has not run the most competent campaign. Being able to skate through media questions is something a leader must be able to do, and her ability to do this is iffy. In addition, many see the dip in poll numbers for the Liberals as due to her inability to impress. As such, there will likely be a desire among some Liberal voters to punish her personally. Add to that the fact that she is running against Wab Kinew who is easily a star.
Winnipeg's Due North ridings
Like many cities, including Toronto and Montreal, part of Winnipeg is on a bit of a "slant" from true north. As such, the entire north-east border is seen as "Northern" Winnipeg. I, however, am talking about the 3 ridings located "due north" and hugged against the corner; two of which are Liberal on this map, and the third is NDP. These ridings are where the Liberals have grown strength in the past decade, and if they plan to have a base of support, they need to build it here.
This is the northern riding I have coloured in Liberal Red. This riding is a bit iffy on the math; the Liberals have a good strong history here, but their drop on the polls makes this borderline. What confuses things is that the current MLA, elected as an NDPer, is running as an Independent. It is always difficult to say how these things impact the vote. There are two things that frequently happen. One is that party voters split while voters for the other stay with their traditional voting home. If that happens the Liberals certainly win. The other, which has happened with candidates such as Bob Simpson in BC or Brent Rathgeber, is that voters from the other parties see the Independent as their best hope for defeating that party, and line up behind the candidate. If this happens, the current MLA will be re-elected. It's difficult to tell what will happen here.
With the Liberals at or around 22% in the polls, this riding should go Liberal, however, with the party headed towards a number closer to 15%, this riding just does not have the Liberal strength to elect an MLA. The problem for the NDP is that even on the 2011 results, the PC Party nearly took the riding. As a result, I am currently predicting this riding will go PC. Remember that the Liberals took about 7.5% last election. 15% is a doubling, while 22.5% is triple. At triple, they can take the riding, at double, they can not.