Voter turnout for federal election near historic lows

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Voters turned to the ballot box at the lowest rate in more than a decade to participate in a snap federal election held during the fourth wave of the pandemic, according to preliminary data from Elections Canada.

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At least 59 per cent polling took place across the country. This figure will change as the election confirms nearly one million ballots cast by Canada Post. The agency will also count the ballots of those who were not registered but appeared at the polling station. Both those totals are not yet known.

In 2019, 67% of the registered voters cast their vote. When Justin Trudeau came to power with his Liberal Party in 2015, 68.3 percent of registered voters turned out to be voting.

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Canada 2021 federal election results by riding

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Richard Johnson, a University of BC professor emeritus who has studied Canadian elections for five decades, expected this drop in enthusiasm and chalked it up to anxiety and security concerns brought on by the pandemic. But he also blamed dwindling star power, which Trudeau used to bring in more voters in his first two elections.

“He used too much of that capital by 2019 and his craze of calling an opportunistic re-election – no reason to do so – just put a lot of people off,” Dr. Johnson said.

The turnout declined significantly after the 1988 election. Earlier, 75 per cent voters cast their vote regularly.

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New Democratic Leader Jagmeet Singh told reporters in Vancouver on Tuesday that he was upset by the apparent lack of interest in this election, but blamed Trudeau for calling an election that scoffed at Election Canada to make voting more accessible. pressured to do.

“Despite one of the biggest crises we have ever faced, this is the lowest turnout,” Mr Singh said.

The NDP leader said he was disappointed by the difficulties faced by students in voting, people waiting in the dark down a Toronto highway to cast a ballot, and complaints from indigenous communities that they did not have access to a polling station on election day. Was.

“We are proud to be a democracy. We want to make it easy for people to vote. And that was not what we saw,” he said.

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