Sunday, June 22, 2014

One Big Campaign pleased with the role
it played in helping stop Tim Hudak

By Nick Fillmore

An evaluation of the results of Thursday’s Ontario election indicates that One Big Campaign (OBC) clearly played an important role in helping stop Tim Hudak and the Conservatives from becoming the government.
OBC made close to a million anti-Tory phone calls and carried out other campaigning in 40 key ridings where we felt Hudak had to be defeated in order to stop him from forming a government.

Now that the results are fully tabulated, OBC’s small group of volunteers is very pleased to see that, amazingly, Hudak lost in 36 of the 40 ridings we focused on.

We can’t tell for certain exactly the impact we had, but did our work make a difference? Yes!
Our success has to be shared with several strong unions and Working Families Ontario, all of which campaigned in various ways, as well as millions of voters who showed the common sense to vote against Tim Hudak’s half-baked program.

However, it is important to point out that, as far as we know, OBC is the only group that telephoned every voter in several of the ridings we focused on, urging people to vote strategically for the candidate our research showed as having the best chance of defeating the Conservative.

I’ve been working on elections in Canada since the start of Pierre Trudeau’s career, as a journalist and now as an activist, and I’ve never seen a campaign where people were so desperate for advice on who they should vote for to stop a political party.

Kathleen Wynne’s Liberals won a majority, taking 59 seats. The Conservatives remain the Official Opposition with 27 seats, but Hudak used his concession speech to announce his resignation as leader. The NDP’s Howarth, who badly misjudged the electorate in forcing the election, won 21 seats. But I don’t think Howarth will survive as leader, as many of the party’s more progressive old guard were after her even when she forced the vote.

The OBC team is pleased that it helped prevent nine Conservatives from being re-elected in ridings we targeted. Most significantly, we helped knock off the Conservatives only sitting member in the Toronto area, Doug Holyday, who was handily defeated by former fellow city council member, Liberal Peter Milczyn.
Other Tory incumbents to fall were: Rod Jackson (Barrie), Jane McKenna (Burlington), Rob Leone (Cambridge), Roxanne Villeneuve Robertson (Glengarry-Prescott-Russell), Ted Chudleigh (Halton), Jane Twinney (Newmarket-Aurora), and Rob Milligan (Northumberland-Quinte West).

Moreover, the OBC researchers correctly identified a number of Liberals and New Democrats who were leading, but threatened, in key ridings, and helped push them to victory.

“We definitely had influence,” said one of OBC’s researchers, “but exactly how much is really hard to say. No riding is alike and there are local issues involved. It’s hard to say exactly how many voters we swayed with riding wide messaging. Either way, a win against Hudak is an important win.”

The four of 40 ridings OBC and other campaigners “lost” were to Laurie Scott (Haliburton-Kawartha Lakes-Brock), Randy Pattapiece (Perth Wellington), Michael Harris (Kitchener-Conestoga), and  Gila Martow (Thornhill).

Political observers who were skeptical that strategic voting would have any real impact on the election are back peddling.

“Well, congratulations,” Wilf Day of Port Hope, an astute political analyst, wrote on Facebook. “History will show Hudak lost this election, and strategic voters won. My congratulations are tempered by only two caveats. First, didn't you succeed a bit too well, getting the Wynne majority? Second, you endorsed three Liberals where the PC ran third: Kingston, Brampton-Springdale, and Brampton West. However, in the history of strategic voting campaigns, getting it right 31 times out of 34 is pretty good.”

OBC is pretty much ecstatic about what we were able to accomplish with a handful of volunteers and a few thousand dollars donated by concerned citizens. Late in the campaign, when we didn’t have much cash on hand and a key funding request was turned down, we consider shutting down our campaign. But we reduced our goals, obviously made some good decisions about target ridings, and carried on.

Ours was one of the most concentrated strategic voting campaigns ever in the country, and it clearly speaks to the need for a well-organized similar campaign against the federal Conservatives next year.

Lastly, the election outcome was another example of the inadequacies of our cockeyed first-past-the-post electoral system. As our friends over at Fair Vote quickly pointed out, The Liberals won 59 seats with only 39 per cent of the popular vote. The Tories took only 27 seats with 31 per cent, and the NDP only 21 seats with 24 per cent. The Greens took five per cent of the votes but won no seats. A better way would be to adopt some form of proportional representation voting system.

Monday, June 9, 2014

34 key ridings where we need to defeat Tim Hudak

One Big Campaign (OBC) has made hundreds-of-thousands of phone calls to identify 34 ridings across the province that we believe are key to the outcome of this Thursday’s Ontario election. If either Liberal or NDP candidates can defeat Conservatives in most of these target ridings, we believe Tim Hudak will go down in defeat.

Because of the way voters are thinking – and not because OBC favors the Liberals in any way – we recommend that voters support the Liberals in 27 of the ridings and New Democrats in the other seven.

Please distribute the link to this page widely - particularly to folks you know in any of the 34 ridings. Click here to access Wikipedia to search for the location of any riding.

ED #  Electoral District Name Endorsement Candidate Endorsement Incumbent  Party
3 Ancaster—Dundas—Flamborough—Westdale  Liberal  Ted McMeekin  Liberal 
4 Barrie  Liberal  Ann Hoggarth  PC
7 Brampton—Springdale  Liberal  Harinder Malhi  Liberal 
8 Brampton West  Liberal  Vic Dhillon  Liberal 
9 Brant  Liberal  Dave Levac  Liberal 
11 Burlington  Liberal  Eleanor McMahon  PC
12 Cambridge  Liberal  Kathryn McGarry  PC
19 Durham  Liberal  Granville Anderson  PC
20 Eglinton—Lawrence  Liberal  Michael Colle  Liberal 
22 Essex  NDP  Taras Natyshak  NDP
24 Etobicoke—Lakeshore  Liberal  Peter Milczyn PC
26 Glengarry—Prescott—Russell  Liberal  Grant Crack  Liberal 
29 Haliburton—Kawartha Lakes—Brock  Liberal  Rick Johnson  PC
30 Halton  Liberal  Indira Naidoo-Harris  PC
35 Kenora—Rainy River  NDP  Sarah Campbell  NDP
36 Kingston and the Islands  Liberal  Sophia Kiwala  Liberal 
37 Kitchener Centre  Liberal  Daiene Vernile  Liberal 
38 Kitchener—Conestoga  Liberal  Wayne Wright  PC
45 London West  NDP  Peggy Sattler  NDP
53 Newmarket-Aurora Liberal  Chris Ballard  PC
54 Niagara Falls  NDP  Wayne Gates  NDP
58 Northumberland—Quinte West  Liberal  Lou Rinaldi  PC
59 Oak Ridges—Markham  Liberal  Helena Jaczek  Liberal 
61 Oshawa NDP  Jennifer French  PC
63 Ottawa—OrlĂ©ans  Liberal  Marie-France Lalonde  Liberal 
64 Ottawa South  Liberal  John Fraser  Liberal 
66 Ottawa West—Nepean  Liberal  Bob Chiarelli  Liberal 
70 Perth—Wellington  Liberal  Stewart Skinner  PC
76 St.Catharines  Liberal  Jim Bradley  Liberal 
82 Scarborough—Guildwood  Liberal  Mitzie Hunter  Liberal 
89 Thornhill  Liberal  Sandra Yeung Racco  PC
93 Timmins—James Bay  NDP  Gilles Bisson  NDP
98 Welland  NDP  Cindy Forster  NDP
104 York Centre  Liberal  Monte Kwinter  Liberal 

Liberal and NDP supporters must get out and vote!

We know that many people are upset with both the Liberals and NDPs, but it’s very important that everyone vote. A survey of Conservative voters revealed that 70 per cent of them will vote. So please urge people to vote following our recommendations. We don’t want to wake up on Friday with “Tim Hudak election hangover!”

Our riding-by-riding polling also revealed the risks of Ontario’s antiquated first-past-the-post voting system. Because the party with the largest number of seats can form the government, Tim Hudak could actually win with perhaps only 37 per cent of voters supporting him. The province desperately need to switch to some form of proportional representation voting system, which would put an end to what’s known as a “false majority.”

A complete list of all of the provincial ridings
will be posted as soon as available.

Thursday, June 5, 2014



Ontario is facing a dangerous situation. Many voters who normally support the two other main parties, the New Democrats and the Liberals, are very angry with their leadership. Right now, it’s impossible to predict who they will vote for. Opinion polls indicate that some 35 per cent of voters have not decided who they will support.

There’s also the danger of “vote splitting”, where the Conservatives could win seats with fewer votes than the total votes received by the opposition parties. If thousands of angry Liberal and New Democrats stay home on June 12, Tim Hudak could well win. – And you can bet the Conservatives will get out their vote!

Hudak must be stopped! Our campaign will tell people in strategic ridings which party has the best chance of beating the Conservative candidate. There are only a few days left for us to complete our campaigning. The more donations we receive the better we will be able to do our job.

Please donate using PayPal or send a cheque payable to One Big Campaign and mail it to:
One Big Campaign,
c/o Nick Fillmore,
167 Arlington Ave.,
Toronto, ON M6C 2Z3

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

"Tim, We Did The Math!"

Singer-songwriter Nancy White, known for her edgy and often hilarious songs on CBC Radio’s Sunday Morning program for several years, has written a great song explaining her feelings toward Tim Hudak. 

Special thanks to the kind folks who assisted Nancy and, in particular, Operation Maple for recording and producing the song.

Nancy performed the song to help us with our fundraising, so please
, please make a contribution, and circulate her song far and wide. Ask your friends to donate using our PayPal Account donate button to the left.

Saturday, May 31, 2014

What we’re doing; and how you can help

One Big Campaign (OBC) is carrying out a major campaign across Ontario to help people decide who to vote for in their riding to prevent the election of the right-wing Tim Hudak and the Progressive Conservatives.

We know that many, many people across the province want to see Hudak defeated, but they aren’t sure which alternative party they should vote for.  So we are making hundreds-of-thousands of phone calls to voters to determine which opposition party – Liberal, New Democrat, or Green – has the best chance of defeating the Conservative candidate in each riding.

This is a hugely important – but costly project – so we are asking you to please make a PayPal donation (Click here, or the button to the left) to support our work. Any amount will be appreciated. Only Ontario residents are permitted to contribute.

Ontario is in a dangerous situation where, with our first-past-the-post system, Hudak could form a majority
From top:
Andrea Horwath (NDP),
Mike Schreiner, (GP),
Kathleen Wynne, (LP)
government with less than 38 per cent of the popular vote – much like Stephen Harper won on only 39 per cent of the popular vote in 2011.

Public confusion over which party to vote for is clearly shown in the fact that, mid-way in the campaign, some 35 per cent of voters had not decided who they would support.

“We feel it’s just too risky to sit by and take a chance that Hudak might sneak in with a minority government,” says Nick Fillmore, retired Toronto journalist and one of the organizers of the campaign.

One way that the PCs could slip into power would be to “split the vote.” This happens when, in a riding, let’s say the PCs get 2,122 votes, the Liberals 1,903, and the New Democrats 723. The total of the Liberals and New Democrats is higher than the PCs, yet they both lose. If this were a real riding, and our research shows the Liberals with quite a large lead over the NDP, we would recommend that people vote Liberal. Conversely, the same will happen to benefit the New Democrats in other ridings.

When we get closer to election day – June 12 – we will distribute a list that includes every riding in the province, suggesting who people can vote for if they want to try to make sure Hudak is defeated. We will need help distributing this list. If you would like to help, email us at 

One Big Campaign is a small politically-independent citizens group created two years ago to work on important social and political issues. We operate the Facebook page, Campaign to build 'One Big Campaign'. The group is registered as a Third Party with Elections Ontario, which allows us to raise and spend funds on our campaign. Our financial records are audited by the firm Kriens-LaRose of Toronto.

Think of the damage created by Mike Harris – and then think of Tim Hudak and perhaps triple it!
Please make a donation to our campaign. Thanks.

Anyone but Tim Hudak for Ontario premier

Unifor's research into Tim Hudak's job plan:

As published in Toronto Star: May 29, 2014

If Tim Hudak becomes premier, Ontario will see unprecedented job cuts, health-care cuts, education cuts and the decimation of workers’ rights.
For those who value decent jobs, good health care, strong communities and a bright, stable future for our children, the primary objective in this election must be to keep Hudak from becoming premier.
That means supporting the candidate with the best chance of defeating the local Conservative candidate.
While so-called strategic voting has always been controversial, the threat that Hudak poses has encouraged many more to support the idea in this election, including some who have criticized it in the past.
That’s because this time, the stakes are just too high to do anything else.
Hudak can’t be trusted with the premiership, and not just because of his terrible promises to fire 100,000 public servants — mostly teachers and health-care workers — increase class sizes and cut health care to our elderly and most vulnerable.
Hudak likes to paint government services as wasteful luxuries and a burden on taxpayers. But he’s wrong. Public sector workers keep our drinking water safe. They teach our children and monitor nuclear facilities. They maintain the roads we use to get to work and to school, and to get home again at the end of the day. They care for us when we’re sick.
It’s no wonder respected economists are left scratching their heads over Hudak’s plans. They just don’t make sense. The false idea that cutting jobs and services in the public sector somehow creates investment and jobs in the private sector has been disproven time and again.
For even more reasons to keep Hudak out of power, we can look to his heavily promoted promise to create one million jobs over eight years. At Unifor, we’ve taken a look at the plan and found some astonishing things — and more reasons not to trust Hudak.
Simply put, the plan is based on deeply flawed economic assumptions that include a devotion to dismantling labour rights, the so-called “right to work” laws Hudak publicly dropped from his platform just three months ago.
The Hudak Conservatives hired U.S. economist Benjamin Zycher, well-known for his love of right to work laws, to estimate any boost to economic activity and job gains from its million jobs plan. To assess the part of the plan dealing with regulation changes, he relied on a Fraser Institute report measuring the supposed economic freedom of American states and Canadian provinces.
Part of that index includes labour laws. Through perverse logic, fewer labour laws are assumed to mean more freedom, leading to higher economic output, more jobs and a stronger economy. Of course, that’s wrong. The fact is right to work states have seen fewer jobs, less money spent on health care and education and more bankruptcies.
Hudak said in February that he would not pursue right to work legislation if he becomes premier. But now his claims for a million jobs rely in part on right to work laws coming to Ontario. That means either Hudak is still committed to the idea or the analysis is even more deeply flawed. Either way, we can’t trust the numbers.
The Conservatives’ own analysis claims that Hudak’s regulatory changes would mean a one-time boost of 10,600 jobs. But once the Conservative campaign team got its hands on the research, the claim was inflated to 84,800 jobs, or 10,600 in each of the next eight years.
That’s a far cry from the one-time boost their analysis predicted.
So this is what we end up with: job creation numbers based on suspect assumptions, stemming from a policy that Hudak claims he will not pursue, and then multiplied by eight by the Conservative campaign team.
It’s just one more reason why Hudak can’t be trusted.
The threat in this election from the potential of Hudak becoming premier is greater than we’ve seen before, including from his mentor Mike Harris. Hudak says he is being very upfront about his drastic plans, but once again we see mistruths and a hidden agenda. He hopes that he can win with a clear mandate to dismantle the best parts of this province in the name of massive corporate tax cuts.
Let’s make sure he doesn’t get the chance.

Friday, May 30, 2014

Determined Tories have the edge
to vote Tim Hudak into power

A new Ipsos Reid poll conducted on behalf of CTV News and CP24 contains some disturbing information for those of us who want to see Tim Hudak defeated in the Ontario Election. This new information makes the best case so far for a strong and determined campaign so that the Conservatives can be stopped.

Image courtesy of
Unfortunately, one piece of information is bound to make potential Liberal voters complacent about voting. Regardless of who they would personally vote for, half (52%) of Ontarians believe that the Liberals will win the election and form the next government, while (35%) of Ontarians think the Progressive Conservatives will win, and only (14%) are picking the NDP.

But danger lurks behind the scenes. The Ipsos poll revealed that the Tories continue to record high figures among likely voters—those actually committed to show up on Election Day – favour the Tories (41%) over the NDP (29%) or Liberals (25%).

In fact, seven in ten (70%) PC voters say that ‘nothing short of an unforeseen emergency could stop me from getting to the voting booth and casting my vote’, making their voters the most motivated to show up. The much smaller number of NDP voters similarly committed to actually showing up is (68%).

However, only 53% of Liberal voters are committed to actually vote, perhaps signalling higher confidence that they will win or some dissatisfaction with the government (but not enough to move them to support another party).

Writes Ipsos:

“While Ontarians believe that momentum might be slightly favouring the Liberals, if Liberal support continues to be anemic, with supporters sitting on their hands rather than heading to the ballot box, the Tories will likely cruise to victory.”