Monday, September 21, 2009

First, You Must Kill Warren Kinsella...

...if you (the LPoC) want to get back the Evangelical vote.

From "Canadian Evangelical Voting Trends by Region, 1996–2008", on why Evangelical voters have trended Tory:

First, when the Canadian Alliance was formed in 2000, it elected Stockwell Day, an evangelical Christian, as its leader. During the 2000 general election campaign, Liberal Party representative Warren Kinsella appeared on Canada AM, a popular national television program, with a Barney the Dinosaur doll and mocked Stockwell Day’s creationist beliefs, saying, “I just want to remind Mr. Day that The Flintstones was not a documentary.”13 Kinsella would go on to boast, “Of all the things I have done in politics, over many, many years, probably nothing has had the impact of those few seconds on Canada AM.”14 While Evangelicals hold various views on Creation, most understood this as an attempt to denigrate their faith.

While this and other explanations offered in the paper seem a list of the authors' personal set of bitches, whines, and complaints, the fact that Evangelicals have trended Tory over the past ten years seems unassailable. Gruending, for example, has made the same point from a different perspective.

IMHO, the real questions are:

1) are there enough Evangelicals out there to justify a special attempt at outreach?

2) Have the Libs abandoned Evangelicals, or vice versa? Stockwell Day/Preston Manning sold their Evangelicalism as part of the political package you would get out of Reform if you voted that way. Most were unimpressed, but some bought into a point on the ideological spectrum that was not, if I am remembering correctly, previously on offer in Canada, at least not federally. To me, that explains most of the shift (and why, with Evangelicals now firmly in their camp, the Tories cannot break the 40% majority level).

18 comments:

Mark Francis said...

The Cons can have them. To take the evangelicals into the LPC, is to hand off votes to the NDP. A best, it's a zero sum game. At best.

Indeed, we should probably find ways to fund the Christian Heritage Party so they could afford to run candidates in every riding. That might shave a point of two off the Cons.

Evangelicals in the Conservative Party are not as fun as they used to be, with Harper's tight-fisted control over messaging being what it is.

Mike said...

Uhm, far be it from me to state the obvious, but if you discount evolution and accept the reality of talking snakes, Jewish zombies and creationism, then you faith deserves to be denigrated.

At every turn and every chance.

Mark is right, let the Tories have them.

Anonymous said...

Meanwhile, in other news, as reported in The Hill Times . . .

"He's put absolutely nothing on the table. It's just empty rhetoric," a top Liberal who supported Mr. Ignatieff (Etobicoke-Lakeshore, Ont.) in both of his leadership campaigns told The Hill Times last week. "It's not enough to say, 'That in good times we're going to bring forward the progress...' If he goes into an election and doesn't really have anything substantive to put on the table, we're looking at a massacre."

Keep listening to Kinsella . . . he's your best weapon.

Lord of Wealth/Green Assassin Brigade said...

I agree with Mark on the CHP, make sure their candidates are invited to your local debates and give them respect and appluase, do what you can to show the attending fundies that CHP are a better fit then the CPC.

We had one last election and if he had been a half way competant candidate(he wasn't) he would have taken at least some CPC support

Jon Pertwee said...

Fred, are you able to keep pace with a conversation? You must be hell to have dinner with.

Greg said...

Guys, I hate to tell you this, but Canadian evangelicals are not the same as Confederate State-based, U.S. evangelicals. Any party that gives up on them is being foolish.

buckets said...

Guys, I hate to tell you this, but Canadian evangelicals are not the same as Confederate State-based, U.S. evangelicals. The point, surely, is that some are and some aren't. (Nor, I suspect, are the southern evangelicals as monolithic as we hear.)

That being said, let's be honest here. Surely one of the most important reasons that conservative Christians of various flavours have been moving towards the Conservatives over the last decade or so was gay rights, especially ssm. That genie is not going back into the bottle.

FrankD said...

Looks like Warren is lashing out now at LPC folks who talk to the Hill Times. I'm having a Dion deja vu all over again.

Ti-Guy said...

I'm pretty sure other documentation would show that Evangelicals are becoming more fundamentalist in reaction to various political and social trends. That appears to be happening with most religious groups. For that matter, all ideologies seem to have been retreating towards their fundamental core principles in the last decade, since the dumbing down of our culture isn't leaving any room for constructive ambiguity.

It's not the Liberal Party that has changed so much as the religious have. I never thought I'd live to see the day that anyone would refer to creationism in this country as a major article of Christian faith.

Gene Rayburn said...

FrankD, link?

Jay said...

I'd become the liberals worse enemy if any of those deluded individuals were invited onto the party. I don't care if they chose to vote liberal but any outreach would mean something was being offered in return for support. Religion has no place in governance or policy or political parties. I can name 10 people I know that would quit immediately, myself included. This religious faction is a threat to democracy and human rights.

Jay said...

Greg,
a friends mother told her she was disappointed her daughter was doing a science degree because it was mumbo jumbo and witchcraft.

They are as tainted mentally as the American version.

Ti-Guy said...

FrankD, link?

Over at Kinsella's blog. He's going after some "anonymous top Liberal" who's fretting and whining to The Hill Times.

Just once...once...I'd like to find out who one of these anonymous "top representatives" is...of any party. I have a very strong feeling that the journalists are just making them up. Another version of "some people say."

Gene Rayburn said...

cripes, that was so minor I didnt notice it. Thanks Ti-Guy. That was a mighty huge piece of conjecture Frank D threw into it.

nos200 said...

"Guys, I hate to tell you this, but Canadian evangelicals are not the same as Confederate State-based, U.S. evangelicals. Any party that gives up on them is being foolish."

You're right Greg. In Canada, they are fewer in number and politically a non-factor for the most part. Any party that pays more than a token amount of attention to them is doomed to doing no better than a minority government.

Tof KW said...

"I never thought I'd live to see the day that anyone would refer to creationism in this country as a major article of Christian faith."

Aside from the evangelicals, no Christian church supports creationism, at least none I'm aware of. The Vatican has already defended the theory of evolution several times (that Galileo incident must still hurt) and has been on record as stating that Genesis and the TofE are compatible. They've also lumped creationists in with pagans and witchcraft. There's the largest Christian church right there calling it BS, and the East Orthodox and Lutheran views are pretty similar. I don't know about any others than those 3 churches.

It seems only the evangelicals hold such kooky views, along with the sun revolving around the earth and that Obama is the Anti-Christ.

IMHO the Liberals should not count out the religious of any faith, but definitely avoid the fundamentalists like the plague. The CPC can have them, along with the racist vote.

Reality Bites said...

Oh, I have no doubt that anonymous sources are real. Any party has its share of malcontents and dissidents who are more than happy to say negative things, true or not. The Conservatives used to have them too, until they got a leader members are scared shitless of.

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