By Jeanelle Lanaca
On August 13, 2021, Justin Trudeau called for an early election on September 20, saying that he needed a new mandate to ensure that voters approved of his Liberal government’s plan to recover from the pandemic. There were only 36 days to campaign. This September found his government in a third term, but with a minority government, winning by being elected or leading in the most electoral districts and 160 seats in Parliament.
Looking at the other parties, the Conservatives fell short with a lead of 119. However, the New Democrats (NDP) gained only 25 seats while the Green party fell short with only 2 seats. The Bloc Quebecois managed to win 32 seats, leaving the People’s Party of Canada with none. Even though these parties fell short of winning over Parliament, these will be the parties the Liberal government will need to rely on with their minority government.
Despite losing by a landslide, the other party leaders remained in optimistic spirits. Jagmeet Singh, leader of the NDP, says he’s proud of what he and his teammates have done through their campaign. He won his riding in Burnaby and said that his “fight for you will continue.”
“You can be sure that we will be there for you, and you can also make sure that if we work together, we can build a better society; and that’s exactly what New Democrats will do,” he said, in a late-night speech back in Vancouver.
Meanwhile, even despite his winnings, Justin Trudeau still received backlash from not only opposing party members, but fellow voters themselves. During his campaign, Trudeau was faced by many protesters against vaccine mandates. And according to Elections Canada, only 62.25% percent of eligible voters actually voted. Many of the voters said that this election was not wanted or necessary.
At a recent campaign event, Conservative leader Erin O’Toole fired at Trudeau in a way that’s not very common in Canadian politics. He said, “Every Canadian has met a Justin Trudeau in their lives -- privileged, entitled and always looking out for number one. He was looking out for number one when he called this expensive and unnecessary election in the middle of a pandemic. That’s not leadership, that’s self interest. And it’s Justin Trudeau through and through.”