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Monday, March 2, 2015


Much to the chagrin of Lorne, Bousquet is hard on the ground in Choiseul rallying forces. Over the weekend, Bousquet was at large trekking the constituency and touching base either through direct personal contact or making calls to key political stakeholders. Admittedly, his characteristic campaign strength has always been his ability to easily navigate what is believed to be a geographically difficult constituency and this weekend he did so with some effect. Perhaps, it is this strength that has earned him a fair personal support base.

However, all is not well with him in the Team Chastanet camp. At the constituency level, a caretaker team appointed to monitor and make recommendations to the party leader, has largely ignored him. Unconfirmed sources have revealed that no less than half a dozen options (minus Bousquet) has been considered - and he is not happy with that status quo.

What is Bousquet up to? Immediately following the November 2011 Poll, he indicated on national radio and TV that he was finished with politics. However, in a subsequent discourse with the writer of this article, he indicated that he was equally prepared to give “national service” to his country if he were called upon to do so again!

If we have any inkling of who the real Bousquet is, then we should know that to him, “ambivalence means consent”! Bousquet has apparently made up his mind to run again; and amidst all the fray and dissensus that has characterized the selection process in Choiseul, he may well be the only viable candidate in a contest with Lorne. In the pursuit of his goals, Bousquet is known to be the sort of person that may not be able to hit the ceiling but he will not lie down on the floor and complain.

Bousquet is acutely aware that Choiseul is in the tossup category; but I’m sure he is equally aware that the electoral outcome is not matter of fact. Traditionally, Choiseul has tended to lean towards Labour but the paradox is it has also tended to lean towards Bousquet!

Choiseul’s idiosyncratic voting behavior in recent history is not altogether inexplicable; it is partly based on Newton’s Third law of “action-reaction”, that is, to every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction! It is also partly based on the “missing-in-action” phenomenon of fly-by-night parliamentary representatives who invariably disappear from the constituency after they have won the seat. This phenomenon has resulted in the creation of a political void which soon becomes filled with disenchantment, disillusionment and disaffection!

This game is likely to continue until the voters perceive a measure of reciprocity has been restored.

Notwithstanding all of the above, the sequence of events in Choiseul may not have resulted in a major sea change in political allegiance; however, at the moment, indications are the UWP may be savouring a slight advantage; but the seat is equally winnable by either side.

The pattern in Choiseul for the past three General Elections appeared to be 50/50 with a slight advantage (49/48) in favour of Labour.  The 3% swing vote, which fell within the margin of error, invariably determined the final outcome of the Choiseul/Saltibus vote.

If we minus 1% disenchanted voters and add the 3% swing, then theoretically, UWP is expected to be leading 52/48. In addition, if the recent tradition of changing parliamentary rep every election holds, then the UWP is expected to win Choiseul/Saltibus; however, the situation is not linear.

Whereas the SLP camp has lost its frontline campaign team, the UWP is divided and in disarray. Given the complex nature and sequence of events surrounding Bousquet, his endorsement is likely to pose insurmountable challenges to his party. If Bousquet were smart, he would perhaps take the very advice he offered to his colleague Richard Frederick for while his may be in contention to win the Choiseul seat, he may equally cost the UWP the elections. Indeed, Richard because of his base and national following may be a much bigger asset to the UWP than Bousquet.

Meanwhile, Choiseul is caught up between the devil and a deep blue sea of Souccouyan representation. Despite Bousquet’s magnetic personality and his uncanny ability to trek the Choiseul constituency, he has to be included in the category of a Souccouyan representative.

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