Friday, April 30, 2021

Many updates! 30APR2021

 Within the past few hours and days, things have gotten moving around the world, politically.


In Israel, it is becoming more and more clear, at least to me, that Naftali Bennett has a good chance of becoming Prime Minister within the next few days and weeks. There is still a chance for another election, and, a chance Bibi holds on; but right now, the smart money is with Bennett. I'll save discussing this a bit more for a later post, as, I have many updates in this post.

In Palestine, the elections have been delayed. I will also address this in detail in a later post, where I'll also explain some of the technicalities and weirdness that places like the Seam Zone cause. 


The coalition process is moving along to its next step. While there is some agreement that more time is needed, there is also a desire to get a comprehensive covid plan on the table. Will update as more comes.


The Australian state of Tasmania votes tomorrow, May 1st. (or, "Today" in Australia, as this post will go up at about 4am local for Tasmanians) Polls suggest the governing Liberals are likely to be re-elected, but with no guarantee they'll get another Majority. I will post what we know of the results in tomorrow's blogpost.


I've seen enough in new polls to declare significant movement. The new poll average, very roughly, is as follows:

191 - GRN
182 - CDU
110 - SPD
85 - FDP
84 - AfD
56 - LNK

The Greens, polling as high as 28% in some polls, would win their first election, ever, at the federal level, in Germany. Note that I've used 709 seats for my calculation, as, this is the current number of seats, even though the election is expected to produce far fewer seats due to less of a need for overhang seats. 

Their next best showing was 10.7% of the vote in the 2009 election. 

This would not be enough for a Green-Social Democratic government; but would be for Green-Christian Democrat government. This would mean Merkel's party remains in government, but, as a Jr Partner. It is, of course, possible for a the Liberal/Libertarian FDP party to join a GRN-SPD government; and these numbers could even see a GRN-SPD government supported by the hard left Linke party. 

Things are expected to change as the details firm up, and the election date draws closer; but there's a very good chance the Greens could win this in the end. People are a bit tired of Merkel's party, and the chancellor candidate they've offered this election seems sub-par, while the Greens have offered up their own candidate this time, who seems quite popular. My money would be on the Greens winning the most seats and votes, and, heading the next government coalition; with Annalena Baerbock becoming Chancellor. 


British local elections have managed to sneak up on me this year. County-level elections are taking place in various locations across England. 

In Wales, the Senedd is also up for election. Polls suggest Labour is up by about 2 points from last election, and the Tories are up about 6 points. The Welsh Nationalist PC is about level, while the LibDems have lost 4 points. The 12.5% UKIP took last time has vanished, but two "UKIP-like" parties are each at 4%. Labour can be expected to either retain their seats, or gain additional seats, based on this. Currently they hold 29 of 60 seats, and are supported by the LibDems and some Independents. This could, roughly be expected to continue; but the exact counts need to be seen.

Scotland also votes at the same time. Regionally; which impacts the proportional seats; The SNP is down 5 points, while the Greens are up by 2. The other parties (which currently hold seats) are steady, with the new Alba Party, lead by Alex Salmond, makes up the difference, sitting at around 3% or so. In the Constituency vote, the parties are all within a point or two of what they took last time; but the SNP seems potentially slightly down. If that plays out, the SNP could lose their majority. 

Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Arlene Foster resigns as DUP leader

 The First Minister of Northern Ireland, Arlene Foster, has resigned as leader of the DUP. She has also resigned as First Minister. She'd been facing pressure to go in recent weeks.

The pressure stems from the Brexit deal, which, according to those in the DUP who oppose it, but a border between Northern Ireland and Britain. As Unionists, such a concept is fundamentally in opposition to the entire concept of what a Unionist thinks Northern Ireland is. 

As such, there is every chance that the next DUP leader will take a more hardline, more pro-Unionist stance on issues. This may make working with Sinn Fein much more difficult. 

Two moderate candidates for the top job are Jeffery Donaldson, MP; and Gavin Robinson, MP. 

However, there is thought that the job of DUP leader, and the role of First Minister, be split. Edwin Poots, MLA and Agriculture Minister is probably in the best position to become the next First Minister. He is a hardliner, and may be someone who SF has difficulty working with. 

There is time to sort all of this out. Foster will remain DUP leader until the 28th of May, and First Minister until the 30th of June. 

I will be keeping a close eye on all of this as it unfolds. 

Sunday, April 25, 2021

Updates for 25APR2021

 Again, little to update. I added one of my maps to the wikipedia page on the Yukon election, cause nobody else has yet. Nothing of note out of Bulgaria or the Netherlands, but there are signs of movement elsewhere. Germany and Italy are very close to having trends of note, I just need a few more polls to confirm things. 

Israel is where the biggest changes are. The upcoming Palestinian elections have caused disputes in Jerusalem. This is playing into government formation, and how it plays out remains to be seen. A cynic might think that Bibi is trying to inflame the situation to bolster his own support, if that is indeed the case, it may not be enough to save him. 

Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Updates for 20APR2021

 Nothing much to update. The Tie in the Yukon has been won by the NDP, so the final standings are 8-8-3. The Dutch still seem to be forming a coalition government of some sort, while Greenland seems to have settled on the expected Ataqatigiit-Naleraq coalition, with Atassut support. In Germany the CDU has had a slight bounce while the Greens have announced a chancellor candidate for the first time. Bibi's chances of a coalition have narrowed, and it now looks like he may be out after all. 

When there is movement on one of the fronts I'm following closely, I will let you know. 

Tuesday, April 13, 2021

Yukon election and other updates


7477 - 39.35% - Yukon Party - 8 seats
6142 - 32.32% - Liberal Party - 8 seats + 1 tie
5356 - 28.19% - NDP - 2 seats + 1 tie
26 votes - All Others

The results are in, and nobody has a Majority. 

It is all but impossible for the Yukon Party to end with more seats. That would require a 22 vote swing in Whitehorse West from any special ballots. This is extremely unlikely given the number of said ballots left to count. The single riding with a tie has no Yukon Party candidate, and, counting that tie as an NDP win, the Liberals still have 8 seats, the same number as the Yukon Party. As such the Liberals will be able to test the confidence of the house. Both the Liberal leader and Yukon Party leader accepted as much in their speeches. 

Any media outlets that have yet to call this for the Liberals are being pedantic. While the opportunity remains for the government to change hands after the legislature first meets; as it did in BC after the 2017 elections, or NB in 2018, the custom in Canada is to recognize the incumbent as the "winner" of the "election"

The most likely next step is for some kind of deal between the Liberals and NDP. There are three ways that can play out.

1 - "A Deal" - the weakest kind of deal - a one off "we will give you X if you give us Y", where the Liberals trade support on the throne speech for something the NDP wants to see

2 - "C&S" - Confidence and Supply - The NDP agrees to support the liberals as the government, voting for their throne speech and budget - in return for a number of policy points they wish to see implemented.

3 - "Coalition" - This means the Liberals and NDP will both supply members to the cabinet, both be part of "the government" and both govern the province together. 

Each of these has a history in Canada. The first has been used many times Federally. The second's most famous occurrence was after the 1985 Ontario election, when it was called an "Accord", but was also the result of the NDP-Green agreement after the 2017 BC election. Outright coalitions have been somewhat rare in modern times, but have happened. 1991 in Saskatchewan between the Liberals and NDP is an example. The most famous example is probably the alliance of the Progressives and the Liberals in Manitoba; which lead to the effective merger of the two parties. 

My current guess is that we will see a C&S agreement between the two parties. What actually happens will depend a lot on the personalities of the two party leaders, and their caucuses. 

Outside the Yukon:

Greenland and the Netherlands continue to slowly work towards a coalition government, as does Israel and Bulgaria. While none of them have seen positive progress (IE, an event has made a coalition more likely) all of them, especially the latter two, have seen negative progress (something that makes a particular coalition less likely), but since none of those events rule out a coalition, there is in effect, nothing of note to update.

Thursday, April 8, 2021

Bulgaria, Greenland, and Bezalel Smotrich


On April 4th, Bulgaria held general elections. The results were as follows:

75 - GERB (Conservative)
51 - ITN (Anti-Corruption)
43 - BSP (Socialist)
30 - DPS (Turkish Minority)
27 - DB (Anti-Corruption)
14 - ISMV (Anti-Corruption)

Note that these numbers may change as counting continues. 

One issue that makes a coalition difficult is that none of the anti-corruption parties wish to sit with GERB. ITN also does not want to sit with either the BSP or DPS. and both DB and ISMV have reservations about those two parties. 

This makes any potential coalition difficult, if not impossible. It would require all 3 of the non-anti-corruption parties to unite to form a majority. 

I'm keeping my eye on the situation, but as it stands, it is likely Bulgaria will be headed back to another election in a few months, one that the Anti-Corruption parties are more likely to win by a larger margin. 


On the 6th, Greenland voted for a new Parliament. The main issue in the election was development of a mine. The governing Siumut supported the development, while the opposition Atagatigiit opposed it. An election was needed due to the Democrats (who also opposed the mine) withdrawing from government, causing it to lose its majority. 

The results show Atagatigiit taking 12 seats, a gain of 4, while the Democrats have lost 3, and now only hold 3 seats. Siumut has gained 1 seat, while their only other coalition partner has lost their single seat. 

As a result, at least on the mine issue, the new Parliament will look like the old one. Results summary below:

Inuit Atagatigiit - 12 - Left and Sovereigntist 
Siumut - 10 - Left/Centre and Sovereigntist 
Nalerag - 4 - Centre and Sovereigntist 
Democrats - 3 - Right/Centre and Anti-Sovereigntist
Atassut - 2 - Right and skeptical of Sovereigntism

Starting with the first elections in 1979, the Premier has been from Siumut for all, except, a 3 year period from 2019 to 2013, when the Premier came from Atagatigiit. Looking at historical governments, it is possible that Atagatigiit, Nalerag, and the Democrats could form a coalition government. 


I want to quickly introduce Bezalel Smotrich. He is leader of the Religious Zionist party, the party formerly known as Tkuma. The party itself won 4 seats in the recent election. Adding to that is 1 member of Otzma Yehudit,  and Noam. Otzma is extremely far right, to the point that there are often debates on it it should be banned. Noam is extremly anti LGBT. Somtrich, however, himself, is quite far on the right. He has held the following positions over the years:

That Jews should be able to redline Arabs when it comes to selling and buying houses. 

Opposition to "mixed marriages" between Jews and Arabs.

Announced he is proud to be a homophobe.

Supported segregation of Jews and Arabs. 

Supports a Halachic state (the Jewish version of the Islamic "Sharia Law") 

Yesterday, he said that Arabs who do not support Jewish control over the "Land of Israel" (a term that usually means 'including Gaza and the West Bank') should leave. 

In short, he has become "big" enough of a name in Israeli Politics that I will use his name, and not a party name, when summing up polls. 

Tuesday, April 6, 2021

06APR2021 very short updates


While Lega seems somewhat stable at 22%, the other 3 major parties (the Democrats, M5S, and FdI) all seem to be converging at around 18%


Bibi has been selected by the president, after a vote by Parliament, to be the first to try to form a government. It seems unlikely he can form one without somehow peeling away members from other parties. There is an interesting, if a bit crazy, proposal to elect Bibi as President. This would remove the major road block, as many members elected on the right refuse to sit in a government with Bibi. Either way, it seems more likely than ever that Likud will be in the government at the end of the day, even if Bibi's chances of sitting in that government himself remains 50-50. 

Friday, April 2, 2021

Dry season for politics

 Not much is going on with regard to world elections. Both Israel and the Netherlands have run into roadblocks for government formation; but neither have moved in any direction worth reporting just yet. The only election of note this month is in the Yukon; though, I am still keeping by eye on Calabria. There are a few interesting elections coming up in May.