Along with Westmount-Ville-Marie and Saint-Lambert in Quebec, my hometown of Guelph will be going to the polls on September 8th for federal by-elections called today by Prime Minister Stephen Harper.
Guelph blogger Matthew Hayday posts today with his first of what should be many posts on the upcoming race. I'll be checking out his blog regularly for insight. As a former Guelph resident and co-chair of Brenda Chamberlain's 1993 campaign, I prognosticated on the possible Guelph by-election race earlier this year and I stand by that analysis today. This is popular Grit candidate Frank Valeriote's race to lose. Dipper Tom King and Green candidate Mike Nagy can do well, but in the end will only be spoilers in this race. The real fight is between Valeriote and Tory appointee Gloria Kovach.
One note: it will be very interesting to see how well Liberal leader Stéphane Dion's bold Green Shift plan sells in progressive Guelph. If enough progressive voters in the city - and I'd estimate about 70% of Guelph voters could be described as such - coalesce around the local Liberal (the same goes for the two ridings in Quebec), we'll have good reason to be optimistic about Liberal chances in the next election.