In Multipolarity

A selection of articles analyzing the October 19 election in Canada

New Cold, October 26, 2015

Prime Minist-elect Justin Trudeau in Vancouver on Oct. 18, 2015 (photo by Elizabeth McSheffrey, Vancouver Observer)

Prime Minist-elect Justin Trudeau in Vancouver on Oct. 18, 2015 (photo by Elizabeth McSheffrey, Vancouver Observer)

Canadians elected a new national government on October 19, sending 184 candidates of the Liberal Party to Ottawa out of a total of 338 seats in the federal Parliament. The hated Conservative Party of Prime Minister Stephen Harper came in second place with 99 seats. The other party results were New Democratic Party (44), Bloc québécois (10) and Green Party (1).

The Liberals won 39.5% of the vote, the Conservatives 31.9%. It was a remarkable performance for the Liberals, who finished in third place in the 2011 election with only 18.9% of the vote. Three reasons for the Liberal victory were:

  1. Canadians wanted an end to the coarse, right-wing government of Harper. Nearly three million more people voted in 2015 (68.5% of registered voters, or app. 61% of the adult-age population) compared to the last federal election in 2011. The Liberal vote more than doubled, to 6.9 million votes. The Conservative vote dropped by 226,000, to 5.6 million. (Canada’s population is 35 million.)
  2. The Liberal Party successfully projected a youthful and progressive image of “change” under leader Justin Trudeau. He said a government led by him would increase taxes on the wealthiest people in Canada to better fund government services and it would run budget deficits, as needed, to finance capitalist infrastructure programs and restore some of the cuts to government services made by the Conservatives since 2011.
  3. The progressive posturing by the Liberal Party was facilitated by the staid, conservative campaign of the social-democratic New Democratic Party. NDP leader Tom Mulcair campaigned as a fiscal conservative who would not radically change the economic policies of the Conservatives. The NDP vote dropped from 4.5 million in 2011 to 3.5 million in this election. The party lost all its seats in Toronto, Canada’s largest city. Its seat total in the province of Quebec dropped from 59 in 2011 to 16. Quebec has 78 seats in the federal Parliament.

There were no significant differences in foreign policy between these three leading parties in the election. All three support the civil war government in Kyiv, the big-power sanctions against Russia and the threatening war moves of the NATO military alliance.

Selection of articles on the October 19, 2015 national election in Canada:

Trudeau’s bold change pledge was a ruse. But Canada now has a fighting chance, by Martin Lukacs, The Guardian, Oct 22, 2015 (Martin Lukacs is an independent journalist living in Montreal. He writes regularly on the environment for the Guardian.)

Don’t expect Justin Trudeau to challenge the status quo, by Audrea Lim, Al Jazeera, Oct 20, 2015 (Audrea Lim is a graduate of the University of Toronto. She was a winner in 2007 of the Dalton Camp Award, presented annually by Friends of Canadian Broadcasting.)

Devastating election result requires Tom Mulcair’s NDP to again rethink its purpose, by Thomas Walkom, columnist, Toronto Star, Oct 21, 2015
What is the point of a faux Liberal party when the real Liberals already exists?’

Stephen Harper has gone, but Harperism has not, by Thomas Walkom, columnist, Toronto Star, Oct 22, 2015

When the NDP abandoned its socialist principles, it abandoned its chance of winning, Mimi Williams,, Oct 23 and guest-posted on Alberta Politics (Mimi Williams is a longtime NDP activist and freelance journalist living in Alberta.)

Canadian voters step sideways, not forward, in ousting Conservative government, interview with Roger Annis, Oct 20, 2015 (Roger Annis is an editor at New Cold

Tax the rich: How the Liberals outflanked the NDP, by Tristan Markle and Sarah Beuhler,, Oct 23, 2015. Part one of a three-part article. (Tristan Markle and Sarah Beuhler reside in Vancouver and are active in the left-wing municipal party COPE.)

This election campaign wasn’t about the economy, by Thomas Walkom, columnist, Toronto Star, Oct 17, 2015

No one running for Canadian PM plans to scrap arms sales to Saudi Arabia, by Aaron Maté, VICE News, Oct 15, 2015 (Vancouver-born Aaron Maté is a staff writer and researcher at Democracy Now!)


EDITOR’S NOTE: We remind our readers that publication of articles on our site does not mean that we agree with what is written. Our policy is to publish anything which we consider of interest, so as to assist our readers in forming their opinions. Sometimes we even publish articles with which we totally disagree, since we believe it is important for our readers to be informed on as wide a spectrum of views as possible.

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