Lindenwoods could be game changer for Winnipeg South Centre
New electoral boundaries mean Tories would have had firmer grip on Winnipeg South Centre
Electoral boundary changes in some Manitoba ridings could have an impact on the results in this federal election.
The boundaries change every 10 years to reflect population shifts. The 2013 changes would have impacted two Winnipeg ridings most intensely — Winnipeg South Centre and Winnipeg North.
For election 2015, the swing-riding Winnipeg South Centre now includes the suburban neighbourhood, Lindenwoods. CBC News crunched the numbers from the 2011 election, with Lindenwoods in the mix, Conservative Joyce Bateman would have beaten the Liberals by 2,128 votes, instead of 722.
River Heights Liberal voter Rais Khan, 81, said his level of anxiety has risen since the riding expanded.
"Lindenwoods has a lot of Conservative votes and it could change the game," he said.
Conservative voter Darryl Bukoski, 67, lives in Lindenwoods and will vote in Winnipeg South Centre for the first time. He always votes Conservative and plans to again.
"Bateman is probably better known to us because she's an incumbent," he said. "We don't know that much about the other parties. We haven't seen the other parties come visit us."
We've always leaned Conservative.- Lindenwoods voter Darryl Bukoski
Prior to this election, Lindenwoods was part of Winnipeg South, but Bukoski isn't concerned with joining a more politically diverse "swing-riding."
"Probably doesn't make much difference to us," he said. "We've always leaned Conservative in terms of our votes."
Liberals lead in polls
The leftist group LeadNow.ca paid Environics to poll the riding September 18 to 21. It used Interactive Voice Response technology to sample 597 voters and has a margin of error of 4.0 and is considered accurate 19 times out of 20.
For the first time in his life, 58-year-old Lindenwoods resident Dan Torbiak said he plans to vote Liberal instead of Conservative.
"It's a big election for me and one that I've obviously had to think a lot about, but it might be a tectonic plate shift in my voting," he said.
Torbiak said putting in his first-ever Liberal-red lawn sign was "interesting".
"I thought back to my father. If he was alive and saw it, he might have a few stern words for me, but I'm pretty satisfied with the colour of my sign," he said.
Altered Winnipeg North results
The 2013 electoral boundaries changes would have altered the outcome of the 2011 federal election in Winnipeg North.
In 2011, Liberal Kevin Lamoureux won by only 44 votes. However, with the addition of a handful of polling stations in the north east of the riding, New Democrat Rebecca Blaikie would have won by 109 votes.
"Well, you run, you give it your all, you win or you lose and then you move on," Blaikie said on the phone from Montreal after hearing she would have been the MP if the riding redistribution had happened before 2011.
Blaikie is now the campaign director for the NDP in Quebec.
Blaikie said the changes will help Levy Abad, the New Democrat challenging Lamoureux this time.
"It was in play, that means it's still in play, that means it's even more in play, which is good news for the NDP," she said.