Canadian Election Day Live-Blog & Open Thread For All Your Feelings

Welcome to the live-blog of one of the most important Canadian elections in recent memory. This one is super exciting, no one is really sure what’s going to happen, but I’ll be watching CBC and updating as we go. You need 155 seats for a majority government, which the Conservatives might get. Yikes!

Watch the updates as they happen on CBC. Have feelings? Share them!

four of five leaders of the major parties

dotted-divider2

12:20AM: So this is basically done, I am basically done, cannot process this anymore, I am just going to think about Elizabeth May winning the first seat ever for the Green Party. Maybe when I wake up Jack Layton will be PM. Maybe when I wake up the government lobby will not be covered in pictures of He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named.

11:59PM: Elizabeth May has officially won her seat!!!!

11:51PM: Gilles Duceppe just resigned as leader of the Bloc Quebecois! He didn’t win in his riding and the Bloc has been reduced to 2 seats overall.

11:49PM: This is our “new” Prime Minister.

11:36PM: The Liberal candidate in my riding has been the MP there for 18 years, and tonight he was replaced by the NDP candidate. It looks like things like this are happen across the country. Change is happening whether we like it or not!

11:30PM: THE ONLY WAY I WILL FEEL EVEN A LITTLE BIT BETTER ABOUT THIS IS IF ELIZABETH MAY WINS HER SEAT. THAT IS ALL.

11:23PM: My dad keeps thinking Ignatieff is going to announce his resignation, but he just said he’ll continue to serve as long as the Liberals want him to be leader, so.

11:21PM: It’s like a funeral up in this Liberal Party room thing. Because the Liberals are dead. And so is the Bloc. You guys I feel really sad.

11:14PM: Ignatieff is speaking! He looks sombre. Probably because he didn’t even win in his riding. I feel sad for him. AND FOR THIS COUNTRY, DEAR GOD

11:05PM: I feel like we have gone backwards. From the Globe and Mail:

My parents think that because the NDP won so many seats, they allowed the Conservatives to win a majority. I think the Liberals just sucked so hard in this campaign. Thoughts?

10:57PM: Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff is losing in his own riding. The Conservatives have a projected 167 seats, idek, what even.

10:52PM: Elizabeth May is winning in her riding! Maybe the Green Party will get a seat in Parliament for the first time.

Also with the results coming in, it’s clear that the country is divided between socialist NDPers and Conservatives, two far ends of the spectrum. Feels like the United States.

10:45PM: The Liberals are at a historic low. So much for “Canada’s Natural Governing Party” eh?

10:41PM: The Conservatives have confirmed 111 seats, leading with 51. But it’s a probable majority, children.

10:33PM: These are the results from the 2008 election.

This is where we’re at right now:

As you can see, the Liberals are sucking, as is the Bloc. The Conservatives continue their douchbaggery, and Jack Layton managed to rally a nation. Or something.

10:29PM: The NDP is at 104 seats. I feel like this is a record for them and that makes me super happy, if only the Conservatives would disappear. They are stuck at 150 seats.

10:25PM: The Conservatives have 150 seats. I am seriously scared.

10:22PM: Is there anyone in Quebec who has feelings about the Bloc being stuck at only 4 seats?!? The NDP has completely taken over.

10:20PM:

10:17PM: Apparently an NDP candidate who was on vacation the whole time is winning in her riding.

10:15PM: The Conservatives need another 14 seats to win a majority. The polls only closed 14 minutes ago. I don’t know what this means. I feel like the numbers might change? Hoping?

10:13PM: My dad: “A vote for the NDP is a vote for the Conservatives! The Conservatives went right up the middle”

10:02PM: The Conservatives right now have 132 seats. The NDP is in second with 69 seats, and the Liberals are in third with 27. The Bloc has 4 seats.

10:00PM: For the first time in Canadian history it looks like the NDP will be the official opposition, and for the first time in Canadian history the Liberals will not be first or second. Of course, the polls in BC just closed 1 minute ago.

9:57PM: “Breaking News: Conservatives win”
my dad: Breaking news? They haven’t even closed the polls in BC yet! 6/100 polls and they’re already saying the Conservatives won!

9:49PM: They’ve already started releasing the results, with the Conservatives in the lead and the NDP and the Liberals sort of tied for second.

Emily Choo started as an intern with Autostraddle when she was 18 years old. She's now 10 years older and lives in Toronto with her partner and cat. The defining moment of her career was when Riese said this about her: " I think Emily Choo is a very bright, 'poetically inclined' girl who pays attention to everything and knows almost everything (the point of stuff, how to read, how beautiful things feel, how scary things feel, etc.) but doesn't believe/accept/realize yet that she knows almost everything." She still doesn't believe she knows anything, so, thank you, Riese, for that.

Emily has written 124 articles for us.

161 Comments

  1. This is the first ever election that I’ve found mildly interesting. I’ve got only my computer for real-time results!

    I’ve never lived while the NDP were this popular. Curious to see how they’ll play out.

    • Nobody’s lived while the NDP were this popular. The big question will be whether their momentum lasts four years, providing Harper hasn’t merged us into Minnesota by then. Which as AS just told us, is also not a fun place to be atm.

  2. I am SO incredibly pleased by the NDP’s showing and at the same time so incredibly sad that Harper is poised to get a majority. Stop playing with my heart canadian politics!

  3. I think its a shame that Harper was allowed to run again considering all the laws he has broken and the atrocities committed while in power.
    The other parties (mainly the liberals)didn’t step up their game enough to combat the liberal government and get the trust of the people back.
    I think this is an amazing step for the NDPs and if they prove themselves as a good opposition party in this parliament, that will give the people the confidence to make them the next leaders of Canada (I would love to see Jack Layton as PM). I think that the limited seating that the bloc has is very telling has to how Quebec feels today and is a step forward to a more united Canada

  4. Another Harper Government, this does put a sour taste in my maple syrup…on the upside the new official opposition likes the gays and hasn’t had any recent corruption scandals a la the old opp…

  5. oh wow i freaked out when i saw Van East had gone Conservative – then realised that of course the votes are still being counted. 7 seconds passed, and it went back to orange.
    ha!

  6. seats or it didn’t happen. i will not accept a conservative majority until it is glaring at me from my cbc live stream. at which point i will cry.

    HOWEVER. as a good friend of mine opined recently, this is more about the next time. this NDP revolution in quebec has been a long time coming, and edging out the bloc federally is a crucial step towards a serious shift the next time around. the sovereignty discussion needs to happen on the provincial level, not the federal one, and it seems as though quebec is finally realizing this. while these results are supremely discouraging right now, i think it might bode well for the next time.

  7. As an American, can someone explain to me A) why Harper is so bad (I know he’s anti-women’s rights and whatnot, but I’d like to know more) and B) what is the difference between the NDP and the Liberals?

  8. Well this seems really disheartening so far :(
    I hope you guys can dispose of Stephen Harper as soon as possible, though that day is not seeming very soon right now.

  9. Ugh, this election is so upsetting. I`m ecstatic about the NPD, but Harper gaining a majority is ruining everything. I`m so sad.

    Living in Quebec, I`m really proud of my province and excited about how this all plays out for us here. I understand that a lot of people will be upset about the utter failure of the Bloc, but I think it`s so heartening to see sovereignty take a back seat.

    But still, I`m so terrified about what Harper will do with a majority. My heart is largely broken.

    As for the success of the NDP giving the conservatives their majority, I think that blame lies largely with the Liberals. They ran a shitty campaign and split their own vote between the Conservatives and the NDP. In the end, the majority of the NDP`s advances came at the expense of the Bloc.

  10. Feelings. So many. I can’t even talk about the whole ‘majority’ deal. It upsets me. But I have to ask… Did anyone else feel like Harry Potter fantasy became real? Whenever they put the party leaders up on the screen together they weren’t just pictures. They were MOVING. AKA it was video. But still.

  11. I am moving back to Ottawa in 3 weeks and I was hoping to go home to a better place, looks like its not the case. At least my riding voted NDP, seems the rest of Southern Ontario didn’t feel that way

  12. a few things.
    1. a sense of irony, now, in ignatieff’s “don’t vote ndp, the libs are the only ones who can defeat harper” speech.
    2. i am very very sad.
    3. I CANNOT BELIEVE WE’RE GOING TO HAVE A CONSERVATIVE MAJORITY.

  13. Fuck yes Elizabeth May (positive thoughts, she is leading so far) and fuck yeah NDP. But what the fuck? I am happy to have voted in Quebec, a province that SHOWED UP in this election. But this is su fucking upsetting on so many levels I must say.

  14. So, my plans for the next 5 years include a lot of drinking and crying now…

    We’ve lost so many great members of Parliament! Gerard Kennedy, Ken Dryden, Ruby Dhalla, and omg, Martha Hall Findlay is gone? I’m done, Canada. Done.

    I don’t even want to stay up for Alberta’s numbers. They’re called North Texas for a reason.

  15. And Jason Kenney is on about how they’ve gotten the ~~New Canadian vote by getting new Canadians to ~~vote their values. Are you FUCKING KIDDING ME. Kenney is the WORST immigration minister we’ve had since the guy who brought all of the Japanese over to die building our railroads.

    I’m trying to kill him with my thoughts through the TV. It’s not going so well.

    • I agree with sterling_sky, and I will support you in your efforts to “Scanners” Kenney with evil thoughts. *thinkthinkthink*

      Considering he’s the jerk who tried to eliminate t’gay from the info package for immigrants to Canada, he deserves evil thoughts.

  16. Harper tried to change the name “the Government of Canada” to “Harper’s Government” for crying out loud that’s like me telling my employers that they are to only respond to and refer to themselves as “The people who employ Katie” and then asking them for a raise. I would be fired. And so should Harper.

  17. Also Emily I am an Ontarian but I have some feelings re: the Bloc being shut down… Is this the end of them?? I mean, they don’t have ANYBODY who comes close to Duceppe popularity/experience/political power wise, so… where do they go from here? Are they done? I feel like maybe they’re done. Duceppe lost his own seat, ffs! This is bizarro world.

    • honestly… i have no idea. i think someone will step up, and they’ll have to go in a different direction. there are still enough people in quebec who want separation. not a lot of people by any means, but, still, some people.

      • I just don’t even know who they’d get to step up at this point… Granted, they’ve got five years now (*sob!*) but still.

        The only positive I can see coming out of this election is the possibility of a more united left. The Liberals and the NDP have to get together on this, we’re shooting each other in the foot. Granted, I’ve been saying this since I knew what politics were, essentially, but still.

        • The issue of Quebec sovereignty has always been a bit of a rollercoaster. Peaked in the 70s, valley’d in the 80s (relatively), peaked again in the 90s, and coasting since then. It will come back, and the Bloc will come back with it. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if this near-obliteration of the BQ triggers the resurgence of the party, because this new Parliament will be under less pressure to recognize the particular rights and concerns of the Quebecois, and the Quebecois are likely to notice this (probably with a little help from Le Devoir).

          I have no idea who will take the reins, but I have no doubt that they’ll find someone.

          Such a change from the 90’s, when I lived in Montreal and the PQ/BQ politicians were the only one with any passion. I opposed them, but couldn’t help but admire them at the same time.

          • my parents think the PQ are going to win in provincial elections (whenever that is?) to try and balance it out, because like you said, parliament will be under less pressure to give quebec what it wants.

  18. Extremely dispiriting. Bill C-389 (protections for trans people) will be reintroduced by either the NDP or Hedy Fry, but it has a 0% chance of passing. We’ll also see big changes in the composition of the Canadian Supreme Court. I fear the Conservatives will move even more to the right.

    Not good news for anybody, but least of all LGBT peeps.

    • Totally this.

      My MP was a strong supporter of Bill C-389 (Don Davies, NDP of course) – my girlfriend wrote him a letter re this bill and he actually personally wrote her back emphasizing his support. Pretty amazing. I think Bill Siksay introduced it (homogay politician) and he has stepped down (before the election) but I do think Hedy will re-introduce it… with the likelihood of it passing of… hell freezing over. Fuck.

      I find it very hard to accept that trans people are NOT specifically covered in our human rights code and hate crimes legislation. Appalling actually.

  19. Hooray for Elizabeth May! Nice to see her get elected, and at least now she (hopefully) won’t be kept out of the debates in the future.

    My riding in Toronto switched from long-time Liberal to NDP (yay), tho’ my GF’s stuck in a riding that stayed Tory (drat). I’m hoping that this switch to a Conservative majority won’t mark the dawn of a new meanness in Canada.

    (Kinda sounds like a movie title: “Canada: a New Meanness”. That’d make Toronto mayor Rob Ford our Darth Vader and PM Harper our Emperor Palpatine. Damn.)

  20. This is a very sad day for Canada. I kind of want t cry. Although Elizabeth May and the NDP are positives. Other than that, I am very afraid of the next few years. This could be really bad

  21. Gaaah.. This election is so frustrating.

    Let’s start with the good things first: Elizabeth May becomes the first-ever Green MP. Jack ‘Stache is the official opposition, and his wife, Olivia Chow, seems like a nice lady too. And finally, Bloc basically got demolished, Duceppe stepped down, so maybe Quebec will start becoming a part of Canada again.

    But clearly, I will never be able to understand the people who thought this would be a good time to re-elect a Conservative government, and with a majority to boot. Despite Bev Oda’s debacle, and the “Harper Government’s” contempt of Parliament, I am once again going to have to suffer the embarrassment of knowing that Stephen Harper is the one jetting around the world, representing ME…And, oh right, even when we finally kick him out, he’s still going to have a nice little pension funded by us….

    *le sigh

    • Olivia Chow is THE SHIZNIT, YO.

      I was a resident of her riding in 2004, which was represented by a Liberal at the time. I was walking down the street one day telling a friend of mine how I wanted to go into Olivia’s campaign office, sit down across from her, and say, “Convince me to vote for you. I want to be convinced, because I love everything you stand for. I’m just scared that a vote for the NDP will just boost the Tories.” Right as I said that, we turned the corner, and there was Olivia, standing on the sidewalk near the Ossington subway and talking to commuters.

      So I went over to her and told her my dilemma. She said, “Listen. Do you want to vote for something because you believe in it, or against something because you’re afraid of it?” Such simple words never sounded so good! I voted for her.

      She still lost that election. But she won the next one and every one since. :)

    • Yeah, Layton is a fighter.
      What to do but wait 4-5 years? We’re all used to a Harper govt anyway…
      I want Justin Trudeau to become our Obama, rally the Libs & NDP to oust Harper. Would that work?

          • x2. We might as well leave Ignatieff in until we figure out where the hell to go from here, is my feeling. No need to bring in somebody new right away when the election is years off.

          • Any money says that Ignatieff will be ousted by the Liberals within days, especially since he no longer has a seat in Parliament.

            I’m so conflicted about this election. Pissed off that the Tories won a majority, but really excited by the crazy NDP gains.

          • it’s weird because i actually thought he spoke well in his speech last night, and i felt moved/touched by him. why couldn’t he do that the whole campaign!? i can see why everyone loves jack, but ignatieff isn’t that unlikable is he?

          • Oh yeah, it was basically a foregone conclusion, esp since w/o winning his own seat the party would have to pay him to stay on, but that was my personal feeling. Maybe Ralph Goodale or somebody will just come on as interim leader for a while?? Idk, I know we probs need a Quebecker because of the whole French-English-French thing the Liberals have had going on since forever, but I still feel like Justin Trudeau is too young, and I don’t know who else would be good enough and have a “big name” enough, as in be someone people outside of their riding/the party has heard of…

          • Finally Ignatieff accepted the reality check.

            I say Hedy Fry for new Liberal leader!

            1. It’s not like they have a lot of options. Maybe Dominic LeBlanc but he’s incredibly bland, he is like eating plain mayonnaise and his only real leadership quality is that he is a bilingual francophone, which is not enough

            2. Hedy is so immersed in gay culture and politics that she is an honourary gay. Vancouver’s gay acronym should be LGBTQQIH

            3. Her Vancouver Pride costumes are always the most amazing, ridiculous, fabulous things

            4. She will probably actually run, because the only person who loves Hedy more than gay Liberals and Liberal Vancouverites, is Hedy herself

          • new hampshire has no sales tax, which is also awesome, and means those of us in massachusetts have a great place to go on cheap(er)-liquor-buying road trips! lotsa hicks around, but they’re the mind-their-own-business kind, and nobody tends to give a crap what you do, which is nice. you could do a lot worse than new hampshire.

          • on the other hand, no matter what state you live in, there is still the fact that you’d be living in a country that would willingly and not-even-kiddingly entertain the idea of a presidential run from donald trump and one from sarah palin.

            just saying.

          • Thank you for putting our situation in such beautiful, sensible perspective.

            My god. We don’t have Donald Trump, we don’t have Tea Partiers or Rush Limbaugh, we don’t even have Fred Phelps. And a hundred Montrealers marched in the streets to protest last night at 1 AM, we can keep up the pressure on the streets for the next four years.

  22. He’s talking. My ears are bleeding.

    He only got a 2% increase in total votes from last time but won 20 more seats.

    Can we vote like Americans where it’s based on a percentage? K, thanks.

      • the american system/electoral college is sooorta based on percentage. but i think you are right: the key with the american system is that a vote for your psychotic tea party senatorial candidate does not immediately translate into a vote for the evil right-winger for president. that’s, like, the only thing i like about the american system.

        i’m sorry for your bummersville results, canadians :(

  23. This is a sad sad day. I was was working at the poll station earlier and when I was counting the ballots I was so happy to see the majority of the votes were NDP (in a riding that had always been Bloc)
    Then I came home to see what a fucking shit hole the rest of Canada put us in.

    The only good that can come out of this Harper using his majority to screw us over (more) to the extent that it will lead even the current conservatives to demand another election. One can only hope.

  24. anyone who thinks that ndp stole votes from the liberals, that is definitely not the case. most ridings were 2nd place ndp and only around 5 seats did it acutally come down to liberal 2nd place with ndp taking votes away, but at the same time, had there been no NDP momentum to begin with wed have another shitty election turnout because people wouldnt care for ignatieff OR care about the election as a whole, so harper could have been even more douchey and invade districts. and also ndp deleted bloc quebecois which is super fantastic for canada as a whole.

  25. Also, from twitter: “The Conservatives are like Nickelback, I don’t know anyone who likes them but they always seem to do well…”

    And most people who like one like the other. And most of those people are giant fuckwads.

  26. This is a victory for the NDP, no question, but it also seems like a really big shift in the general political makeup of the country. The right is leaning more right and the left is leaning more left. Which meant that the Liberals and the Bloc kinda got abandoned.
    It’s kinda scary that everything is so polarized.
    On an entirely unrelated note, I went to the NDP after party at the convention centre and their were so many gay girls there. Clearly I need to start hanging out with more New Democrats.

  27. Ugggggghhhhhhhhhh this is so depressing. How is it that the MORE vigorous Anti-Harper campaigns are, the better he does!?!? It just blows my fucking mind… I’m wearing black to work in mourning, because, just, ugh…

    And yeah, super mad last night when my NDP boyfriend “apologetically defended” the Conservatives because they had a “better” platform. I just told him “Yeah, well YOUR rights aren’t threatened with a majority Conservative government!” and went to bed angry.

    And FML. My girl-crush is boasting proudly of a Conservative win. Funny how unattractive someone looks after bathing in Harper’s glow…

  28. This link probably won’t work for long, but for any non-Canadians, or Canadians who are not of age to vote, this is a fun little quiz to help you figure out your own political position, and compares your answers to those of the political leaders. I’m 24, but this was my first time voting at the federal level, and the quiz helped me learn about what the parties are really all about.

    http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/canadavotes2011/votecompass/

    We’ll get the Cons out next time, kids! Stay tough, Layton!

  29. dumb american question for canadians: how long ’til the next election? i know it could be tomorrow or whatever if there’s another nonconfidence motion, but barring that, when do y’all get to try again?

      • so what will trigger the next election? what triggers the end of any government? other than a nonconfidence motion, since i gather that the recent one was the First One Ever, but clearly Harper hasn’t been PM forever, because that’s a terrifying thought?

        • Canuck Poli Sci students, please correct me since I don’t actually know the “triggers”, but from what my layman POV has figured out is…whenever they want? The previous election was called so that Harper could gain more power (since he wanted to capitalize on his rising popularity). I know it’s not really just an impulsive bid, but I guess if there’s reason raised in the Parliament, they can call it whenev’s? I think? lol

        • We’ve actually had about a kajillion non-confidence motions, this one was just the last one that came about because of a government committing contempt of parliament.

          The House has a 5 year term, although as I remember it there’s a loophole in the Elections Act that would allow Harper to ask the Governor-General to let him stay on for longer, but the likelihood of him using that barring ridiculous popularity or some kind of national emergency is unlikely (although I would deem Harper having ridiculous popularity as a national emergency in and of itself, but I may be a little bias…)

          • No worries. :)

            Also, possibly interesting wierdness about Canadian electoral system: we could get a new PM tomorrow if the Conservative party decides to fire Harper as their leader and put somebody new in, because we don’t vote for PM, so Harper technically only has his seat as an MP and the rest of the power comes from him being the Cons leader. Essentially, the PM is chosen by the party, but the party is chosen by the people.

          • “although I would deem Harper having ridiculous popularity as a national emergency in and of itself, but I may be a little bias…”

            This made me giggle then sigh despondantly.

          • My mind just blanked as I tried to think about the weather here. Jebus, I’ve got one of those cartoon rainclouds above my head right now lol

        • Also, a non-confidence motion is basically not going to happen now that Harper has a majority, because he’d have to have something like 10 people defect, and the NDP, Liberals, Bloc and any independents (like Greens) to ALL rise up against him as one. Which is… Possible, but deeply, deeply improbable. His previous governments were all minorities, hence why they were easily felled/he could easily call an election himself.

        • Harper was not the first PM to fall to a non-confidence motion (Wikipedia lists 6). No confidence motions are often voted upon when the budget fails to pass or when there has been a major scandal (i.e. our previous PM Paul Martin). The difference this time, is that the vote of no confidence was triggered because Harper was found to be in contempt of Parliament. This was the first time in, Canadian history that that occurred.

          Hopefully that’s somewhat clear (and mostly correct – I’m not a political expert, by any means)

        • harper has at least 4 years now that he has a majority. there’s no set dates like the states, but usually around 4-5 years it’s time for an election. of course what’s been happening the last few years is that harper had a minority government, which meant it was more likely that the opposition would push for an election/vote no confidence/find him in contempt of parliament.

          i’m pretty sure harper would stay PM forever if he could but jack layton would beat him with his cane.

    • The word riding is descended from late Old English *þriðing or *þriding (recorded only in Latin contexts or forms, e.g., trehing, treding, trithing, with Latin initial t here representing the Old English letter thorn). It came into Old English as a loanword from Old Norse þriðjungr, meaning a third part (especially of a county), cf. farthing. The modern form riding was the result of initial th being absorbed in the final th or t of the words north, south, east and west, by which it was normally preceded.

      A common misconception holds that the term arose from some association between the size of the district and the distance that can be covered on horseback in a certain amount of time.

      (i didn’t know that either, but thanks wikipedia!) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Riding_(country_subdivision)

    • “Representation in the House of Commons is based on geographical divisions known as electoral districts, commonly referred to as ridings. The number of electoral districts is established through a formula set out in the Constitution Act, 1867, and one member of Parliament (MP) is elected in each electoral district.”

      from elections canada .

  30. dude, Elizabeth May was born in the States, in the same city i was born in, and she went to elementary school at the school i went to summer day camp at, and she went to a high school that the high school i went to plays against in sports. so basically i’m next in line to be PM, is that right?

    • i guess, since barack obama’s prospects for 2012 just suddenly got so much better, that the states and canada are just not allowed to have cool leaders at the same time. i hope it is your turn next guys.

  31. Oh man guys, as if politics unto themselves didn’t seem to suck already. I worked a polling station in southern Ontario yesterday and i wanted to kick people in the shins. Not including the racist/ignorant comments, it was not too fun.

    Ended up re-counting ballots until around 12:30am because some idiot walked off with theirs (or as far as we can tell that’s what happened) counted 218 ballots EIGHT TIMES. Still no idea where the missing one went… didnt even get to fill in my arrest papers for the stealing of the ballot :(

    So after all that i then find out we’ve the same waste of space PM that we did before…cryying inside, fuming on the outside. Anybody know any good tropical islands? I’ll come back and try again next election, till then i’m outta here…

Contribute to the conversation...

You must be logged in to post a comment.