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Monday, May 11, 2009

Should a conservative vote for the Nova Scotia PC Party?

I wrote a blog post proclaiming that the Nova Scotia PC Party do not deserve to win this election. On the Western Standard, Dane Richard responded to my post with his own post on why the PC Party should win.

I think I can fairly summarize our positions like this:

Hugh: They shouldn't win because they haven't acted like conservatives in government.

Dane: They should win because they are acting like conservatives in the election and the opposition is worse.

Not living in Nova Scotia I haven't heard much about the NDP opposition. Looking a little into it I find out that they are pretty much what I expected them to be. They seem pretty typical of the NDP across the country: government as the solution to all problems.

The issue though is not really the NDP, it is the PC Party. Politicians like everyone else react to incentives. If a nominal conservative can get elected by not acting like a conservative, then they have no incentive to act like a conservative. Basically if we ever want a party that behaves like we want, then we have to stop voting for parties that behave differently. It thus makes long term sense to not vote PC and hope that they get the point and elect a new, more conservative leader.

The flip side to that is if they are acting conservative in an election you should vote for them to encourage them to act more conservative. This creates a dilemma for what a conservative should do with the PC Party of Nova Scotia.

Should they be punished for the way they governed or rewarded for the things that they are promising?

I don't know yet, but I'll be watching to see.


A blog Wolfville Watch has commented on this debate.

Posted by Hugh MacIntyre on May 11, 2009 in Canadian Provincial Politics | Permalink


This is a very interesting commentary. If the electorate wants a conservative government they in theory vote PC. I am not sure that voters really look at the political spectrum when deciding how to vote. A minority government however indicates an undecided electorate and the government should act accordingly. The PC party in Nova Scotia is right to campaign appropriately with the PC position in the spectrum. However, if elected in another minority government I would expect them to behave as they have - less big C conservative.

Posted by: Procellous | 2009-05-12 6:38:05 AM

You want a real conservative to run? The answer is simple! You and your friends get involved in the local riding association and push more conservative candidates instead of mealy mouthed centrists types. All not voting(or picking some minor party) does is elect more NDP legislators. Remember a non-vote is an NDP vote! Take control of your local PC party and dump the progressive part!

Posted by: Jacque | 2009-05-12 3:27:37 PM

We are out of options - the Liberals are planning to ban all plastic bags in grocery stores, removing our choice of paying for safe, hygienic, packaging for our groceries. The NSPCs plan to have a curfew for kids under 15, an unacceptable intrusion of government into our lives. We refuse to vote NDP on principle as we know that whatever they say, and whatever the problem -- government is the answer. So we plan to vote but write "none of the above" on our ballot!

Posted by: ww | 2009-05-22 3:02:36 PM

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