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A brawl for the climate change vote

Green party Leader Elizabeth May waves to her supporters before facing off with Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau, Stephen Harper and NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair in the first election debate. August 6, 2015 Melissa Renwick/Toronto Star via Getty Images

In today’s Big Story podcast, the Green party has seen its poll numbers spike as Canadian voters focus on climate change. How will that impact the fall election?

The Liberals would now like you to know they care very much about climate change. So would the NDP. If you’re wondering why they’re telling you this so loudly at every opportunity, blame the Greens. And the Canadians who are using them as a lever to demand action.

Elizabeth May’s party has seen a jump in the polls this year, while also nearly winning the PEI provincial election, then taking a B.C. by-election to give them a second seat in the House of Commons. The party also released a comprehensive climate emergency plan, that pushed both the Liberals and NDP to race to reaffirm their climate bona fides. But how much of this is real? Can a spike in the polls translate to success in October? Will the greens own the balance of power, or will they fracture the progressive vote?

GUEST: Cormac Mac Sweeney, Parliament Hill reporter

You can subscribe to The Big Story podcast on iTunes or Google Play.

You can also find it at thebigstorypodcast.ca.