If you have twitter and are following people interested in politics, you know by now that the NDP's surge is real and really crazy. In particular, the recent polls show the NDP first in Quebec. Deniers will hide behind the fact that the Crop poll was conducted online. That kinda makes me laugh as we never heard complaints about polls conducted with an online panel before. In particular, where were all these statisticians when Angus-Reid or Crop were showing the NDP at 15% and the Bloc at 38%? Anyway, Crop is not the only one showing the same thing, we see a big increase in Quebec for the NDP in Nanos, Forum Research (I'm waiting for the details of their poll, as they gladly accepted to provide it to me last time) and Ekos.
Also, if you think the surge will go away as the NDP voters are not committed, I think you are wrong. Most polls show that people voting NDP are not more likely to change their vote than the Tories voters. What might happen though is that now that Jack Layton and the NDP are rising, they will be attacked from all sides. We'll see how well they can resist. Having a candidate in Punta Canada instead of running in his riding is one thing where you are low, but these kind of "scandals" have more impacts when you are the focus of attention.
In any ways, using only the latest polls from Nanos, Crop (in Quebec), Ekos and Forum (last two show the NDP tied nationally with the Liberals!), we get the following projections. Yes that's right, the NDP would have a real shot at being the official opposition. And maybe the government? (i.e: a scenario ala Ignatieff...). If I use only EKos, Forum and Crop, the NDP would even go as high as 76 seats, 4 more than the Liberals. The key in Quebec for the Bloc is really around 30%. If they fall below that (and the NDP gets above it), then the Bloc is starting to lose seats really fast. Here are the riding-by-riding projections.
Also note that the NDP is rising everywhere, especially in the Atlantic and the Prairies. They are also up in BC. Actually, the only region where they haven't experienced some kind of boost is Ontario. And this is what is currently saving the Liberals. If Ontarians were to switch to the NDP, Michael Ignatieff could well finish below 60 seats...
Of course, it's only 4 polls. But hey, 4 is better than 1. You can't deny there is a trend going on, especially in Quebec. We have about one week and half left to this campaign and a lot of things can happen.
A note about the Conservatives. In Quebec, they aren't that affected by the NDP. Actually, if the NDP was to score around 20%, they could even be helped by a splitting of the votes. But even if the NDP sweeps Quebec and gets more than 30%, the Tories would likely keep 5-7 seats. In the rest of Canada, as opposed to what a lot of people think, the NDP'surge isn't all good news. Sure it could give them 2 ridings in Ontario, but in the rest of the country, the NDP would actually steal seats from them. This is especially the case in the Prairies and BC.