While I don't disagree that there are many small-c conservative votes up for grabs in the next provincial election, the 'hundreds of thousands' estimate is based on shaky ground.
The first issue is sample size - extrapolating the results of one district to the entire province will result in wild innacuracy.
Secondy, this was Ralph Klein's riding. As Joe Clark demonstrated in federal elections, a win for the leader of a party does not translate into a win for the party - I would argue that no small portion of the 2004 votes were for Ralph, or the Premier, not for the PCs.
Furthermore, this was a byelection and byelection results are notoriously non-indicative of general election outcomes.
That being said, I did some math and came to a funny conclusion. I divided all voters in to two camps: Lib/NDP/Green, and PC/All/SoCred. The ratio of 'right' voters to 'left' voters in 2004 was 7515 (55.8%) to 5951 (44.2%). In 2007, the ratio was 4648 (44.7%) to 5760 (55.3%).
However, if you assume (boldly) that the approx. 2,985 voters who stayed home in 2007 showed up instead and all voted 'right', the ratio changes to 57% vs 43% - almost exactly the same as the 2004 results. It proves nothing, but its interesting.
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