International News Writer
On Monday night Justin Trudeau held his position as Prime Minister after Canadian broadcasters predicted that his minority government would hold. Depending heavily on Quebec, Ontario, and the British Columbia, Prime Minister Trudeau saw his party repeat almost the exact same results from the 2019 federal election. However, when the snap election was called almost a month ago, the aim was not to repeat results but capture a majority which would free Trudeau from needing votes from other parties.
Following his growing popularity during the Coronavirus pandemic, Prime Minister Trudeau decided to call a snap election, two years before he had to. He aimed to grow his party’s seat-count and lead Canadians out of a crushing pandemic with a Liberal Party majority. Having lost a large number of seats in 2019, Trudeau saw this election as the perfect time to strike. However, many Canadians, of different political affiliations, felt differently.
Throughout the course of the election many saw him as the “least worst” candidate which quickly demonstrated that his high approval rating was fragile. Many Canadians lambasted the election as a waste of money, with one lamenting on twitter “C$600 million and all I got was this lousy pencil,” referring to the pencils given to fill out ballots. Global News correspondent Adrian Morrow commented on Twitter “Justin Trudeau called an election halfway through his mandate in the middle of a pandemic wave and a crush of Canadian allies trying to escape Afghanistan, putting at risk his own subsidised daycare plan — and ended up with the same state of play he started from.”
While Trudeau snap election was met with surprise, cynicism, and apathy Trudeau was fortunate his opponents were not as well liked. Conservative Party leader Erin O’Toole was at points tied with Trudeau in the polls, but his vague position on Climate Change, Indigenous issues, and a lack of any distinct political appeal made him as unpopular as the previous two Conservative Party leaders. Jagmeet Singh tried to recapture the NDP’s lost seats of 2019 but struggled to gain voters, many of whom feared that a Liberal loss would mean a Conservative victory. The Bloc Québécois, led by Yves-François Blanchet, maintained their numbers, with almost half of Quebec’s seats. Finally, the Green Party, led by Annamie Paul, had virtually no hope of gaining any seats due to party infighting and the unpopularity of their leader. At one point Paul, an MP without a riding, was even close to being ousted as leader.
While Trudeau holds on to his Parliament lead, he will likely look at this election as a loss and a warning for his next. Instead of capturing more seats and expanding the Liberal Party’s lead and popularity, he has only angered his political enemies and stained his reputation in what many Canadians feel was a waste of time and money.
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