Well, Polly got it wrong and like any good family whose child fails a test, we surrounded her with love and patiently talked her through the nuances of human behaviour that tripped her up in this by-election. Like any intelligent being, Polly learns from experience and this was her first by-election.
Here is what she learned:
- Polly understood that fewer people would come out for a by-election, but this by-election had an added nuance: we will have a federal election in less than 6 months. Therefore, fewer people voted. In the 2015 federal election, they had 75% turnout in Nanaimo. In this by-election it was under 41%.
- Lesser known parties, such as the Greens, normally inspire less confidence in voters, however, in this case, the Greens invested much more heavily in the riding and that made the difference. Their supporters were more likely to come out and vote.
In other words, Polly got a good lesson in human apathy. To Polly, we humans are the alien intelligence.