It is election season in Canada once again.
On August 15 Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced that he would be calling an election with Election Day set for September 20, 2021.
Currently there are only three parties with candidates representing the Cypress Hills-Grasslands riding – current MP Jeremy Patzer, from the Conservative Party of Canada, Val Marie local Alex McPhee representing the NDP and Mark Skagen from the newly formed Maverick Party.
There will be more candidates announced as we move towards Election Day.
In the last Federal Election Justin Trudeau and the Liberal Party of Canada won a minority government, given the sudden election only 2 years later.
In the Cypress Hills-Grasslands district during the last election, Jeremey Patzer with the Conservative Party of Canada won the race with a majority of 31,140 votes. In second place was Trevor Peterson of the NDP with 3,666 votes and in third place was the Liberal Party of Canada with William Caton with 1,595 votes. Trailing behind in fourth was newcomer Lee Harding of the People’s Party of Canada.
This election will be interesting for Canadian voters because of the Covid-19 pandemic and the Delta Variant, which will be big topics in this election, particularly the idea of vaccine passports and support for those who lost jobs or business due to the pandemic, along with other topics including the economy, environment, health care, and truth and reconciliation.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and the Liberal party won the most seats in the 2019 Election and formed a minority government by winning 157 ridings. The Liberals might have the hardest time this time around, being the party that led Canadians through the pandemic from the start. So, voters will have to decide if they did a good job handling the pandemic.
The Conservatives also have a new leader, Erin O’Toole, who replaced former leader Andrew Scheer after failing to beat the Liberals in the 2019 election and winning 121 seats. Voters will see if leadership was the main issue with the Conservatives last election.
Meanwhile the NDP and their leader Jagmeet Singh are in an interesting position. Only winning 24 seats, sitting behind the Bloc Quebecois, they helped keep the minority government in power while also pushing the Liberals for more benefits for business and people struggling during the pandemic.
All parties have been critical of Trudeau on his handling of the pandemic and calling an early election.
Election Day is set for Sept. 20, 2021, with advance voting starting on Sept. 10-13.
Jacob Miller, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Shaunavon Standard