Tag Archives: elections

Harper wins again, gaining 16 seats and some in the precious 905 region around Toronto


By ROB GILLIES Associated Press Writer © 2008 The Associated Press

Oct. 15, 2008, 4:05AM

Harper wins big in the election

Harper wins big in the election

OTTAWA — Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper said Wednesday he will reach out to all parties during the global financial meltdown after his Conservative Party won in national elections but fell short of a parliamentary majority.

Harper had called Tuesday’s elections early in hopes of getting his party a majority, and in doing so he became the first major world leader to face voters since the financial crisis.

Instead, the Conservatives will once again be forced to rely on opposition support to pass budgets and legislation — as it has had to since a 2006 election victory.

Harper sought to put a good face on the results Wednesday, pointing to an increased number of seats and pledging cooperation.

“We have shown that minority government can work and at this time of global economic instability we owe it to Canadians to demonstrate this once again,” Harper said. “We hold out a hand to all members of all parties asking them to join together to protect the economy and weather this world financial crisis.”

With nearly all the returns in, Canada’s election agency reported on its Web site that the Conservatives had won or was leading in races for 143 of Parliament’s 308 seats, an improvement over the 127 seats the party had in the previous Parliament.

The Conservative Party needed to win 155 seats to govern on its own.

The Liberal Party, long Canada’s top party, suffered a severe drubbing, dropping to 76 seats from 95 in the previous Parliament, according to the election agency. Bloc Quebecois won 50 seats, the New Democrats 37 and independent candidates 2.

Liberal Party leader Stephane Dion, in his concession to Harper, offered his “full cooperation in these difficult economic times.”

The party winning the most seats generally forms the government, with its leader becoming prime minister. The opposition parties could unite and topple Harper if they won enough seats for a majority, but analysts said that was unlikely because the parties have no tradition of forming such coalitions.

The opposition Liberals have typically been the party in power, forming the government for most of Canada’s 141 years. But the left-of-center vote was divided among four parties, giving an edge to the Conservatives.

Dion’s campaign was hindered by his unpopular plan to tax all fossil fuels except gasoline and by perceptions he is a weak leader. A former professor from French-speaking Quebec, Dion also suffered in other regions because he frequently mangles English grammar and his accent makes him hard to understand.

Dion said Canadians have asked him to be their official opposition leader, a signal that he’s not ready to step down at this point.

If Dion was ousted as leader after a loss, he would be just the second Liberal leader to fail to become Canada’s prime minister. The only other was Edward Blake, who led the party to defeat in the 1882 and 1887 elections.

Many Canadians complained Harper was slow to react as the global credit crisis worsened. He hurt himself by saying during a debate that Canadians were not concerned about jobs or mortgages. A few days later, he said stocks were cheap — just before Canada’s main stock exchange had its worst week in almost 70 years.

Harper later said he knows Canadians are worried and stressed that Canada’s economic and fiscal performance contrasts to the more dire situation in the United States.

Voter turnout Tuesday about 59 percent, the lowest in Canadian history. It was unclear how much stringent new proof-of-identity requirements affected the turnout.

New Voter Identification rules at the Polls


When you vote, you MUST prove your identity and address. You have three options:

Option 1

Provide one original piece of identification issued by a government or government agency containing your photo, name and address.

Examples

  • Driver’s Licence
  • Health Card
    • This applies only to Ontario
    • Note: Not all electors in Ontario will have cards with photo, name and address
  • Provincial/Territorial Identification Card (non-drivers) for the provinces/territories of
    • Newfoundland and Labrador
    • Prince Edward Island
    • Nova Scotia
    • New Brunswick
    • Alberta
    • British Columbia
    • Northwest Territories

Note: The above pieces of identification are examples only.

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Option 2

Provide two original pieces of identification authorized by the Chief Electoral Officer of Canada. Both pieces must contain your name, and one must also contain your address. Here is the list:

Identity Cards

  • Health Card
  • Social Insurance Number Card
  • Birth Certificate
  • Driver’s Licence
  • Canadian Passport
  • Certificate of Indian Status
  • Certificate of Canadian Citizenship or Citizenship Card
  • Credit/Debit Card with elector name
  • Canadian Forces Identity Card
  • Veterans Affairs Canada Health Card
  • Employee Card issued by employer
  • Old Age Security Identification Card
  • Public Transportation Card
  • Student ID Card
  • Library Card
  • Liquor Identification Card
  • Canadian Blood Services/Héma-Québec Card
  • Hospital Card
  • Fishing Licence
  • Wildlife Identification Card
  • Hunting Licence
  • Firearm Acquisition Card/Firearm Possession Card
  • Outdoors Card and Licences
  • Provincial/Territorial Identification Card
  • Local Community Service Centre Card (CLSC)

Original documents (containing name and address)

  • Credit Card Statement
  • Bank Statement
  • Utility Bill (residential telephone, cable TV, public utilities commission, hydro, gas or water)
  • Attestation of Residence issued by the responsible authority of an Indian band or reserve
  • Local Property Tax Assessment
  • School, College or University Report Card or Transcript
  • Residential Lease, Residential Mortgage Statement or Agreement
  • Canada Child Tax Benefit Statement
  • Income Tax Assessment Notice
  • Insurance Policy
  • Government Cheque or Government Cheque Stub with elector name
  • Statement of Employment Insurance Benefits Paid (T4E)
  • Canada Pension Plan Statement of Contributions/Quebec Pension Plan Statement of Participation
  • Statement of Old Age Security (T4A) or Statement of Canada Pension Plan Benefits (T4AP)
  • Statement of Benefits from provincial workplace safety or insurance board
  • Statement of Direct Deposit for provincial works or provincial disability support program
  • Vehicle Ownership
  • Vehicle Insurance
  • Attestation of Residence issued by the responsible authorities (shelters, soup kitchens, student/senior residences, long-term care facilities)
  • Letter from public curator

Note: A document bearing an address may be used as proof of the elector’s address if this address was written by the issuer of the document and is the same as or consistent with the address on the list of electors. No document other than those included on this list may be accepted to establish the name and address of an elector.

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Option 3

You can be vouched for by an elector whose name appears on the list of electors in the same polling division and who has an acceptable piece or pieces of identification. Both will be required to make a sworn statement. An elector cannot vouch for more than one person, and the person who has been vouched for cannot vouch for another elector.

http://www.elections.ca/content.asp?section=ele&dir=40ge&document=index&lang=e&textonly=false

Election race tightening, poll suggests


OTTAWA – A new poll suggests the federal election race is tightening as party leaders head into the home stretch.

With just over a week until voting day, a new survey suggests Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s Conservatives have dipped to 34 per cent in support – still 10 points ahead of the Liberals but short of levels needed to win a majority.

With just over a week until voting day, a new survey suggests Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s Conservatives have dipped to 34 per cent in support – still 10 points ahead of the Liberals but short of levels needed to win a majority.

The Canadian Press Harris-Decima survey put NDP support at 20 per cent and the Greens at 13 per cent, while the Bloc Quebecois had eight per cent nationally and was leading in Quebec with 33 per cent.

Harris-Decima president Bruce Anderson says the latest results suggest Tory hopes for a majority are dimmer than at any time since the campaign began a month ago.

The rolling survey interviewed 1,236 people Wednesday through Saturday and is considered accurate to within 2.8 percentage points, 19 times out of 20 – though the margin is higher for regional samples.

More information on the poll is available at www.harrisdecima.ca

Does Harper hold a majority surprise?


Mike Cassese/Reuters – Electoral gains in Quebec would translate into a long-hoped for majority for Stephen Harper. Is Stephen Harper serious when he says the most likely outcome of the coming election is another minority government?

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