My own personal fall election likelihood prediction (today I have it at 70%, down 15 points from yesterday) has bounced up and down like a rubber ball from day to day.
So who's to say if the apparent thawing of relations between the NDP and the Conservatives over EI (more like the NDP trying desperately to avoid an election and the Conservatives looking on rather disdainfully) will come to anything. Personally, I think Harper wants an election but doesn't want to be seen wanting an election, so no matter how badly Layton wants to deal, Harper will try to find a way to shake him off.
One thing I do know is that both parties will be incredibly adverse to the use of the c word, coalition, to describe their potential relationship. Accordingly, as a public service, allow me to suggest some alternatives:
affiliation, alliance, amalgam, amalgamation, anschluss, bloc, coadunation, combination, combine, compact, confederacy, confederation, conjunction, consolidation, conspiracy, faction, federation, fusion, integration, league, melding, mergence, merger, merging, party, ring, unification, unionOff hand I'd avoid anschluss for historical reasons (see Austria, Nazi occupation of), bloc (see Quebecois) and union (see labour). I rather like confederacy though, although as a Liberal, conspiracy has a certain ring to it.
But no. The Conservative-NDP Confederacy. Has a certain je ne sais quoi, non? Recommend this Post on Progressive Bloggers