264 seats in the House of Commons
133 seats needed for a majority
Popular vote by province, with graphs indicating the number of seats won. As this is an FPTP election, seat totals are not determined by popular vote by province but instead via results by each riding.
The Canadian parliament after the 1972 election
The 1972 Canadian federal election was held on October 30, 1972, to elect members of the House of Commons of Canada of the 29th Parliament of Canada. It resulted in a slim victory for the governing Liberal Party, which won 109 seats, compared to 107 seats for the opposition Progressive Conservatives. A further 48 seats were won by other parties and independents. On election night, the results appeared to give 109 seats to the Tories, but once the counting had finished the next day, the final results gave the Liberals a minority government and left the New Democratic Party led by David Lewis holding the balance of power. See 29th Canadian parliament for a full list of MPs elected.
The election was the second fought by Liberal leader, Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau. The Liberals entered the election high in the polls, but the spirit of Trudeaumania had worn off, and a slumping economy hurt his party. The Tories were led by Robert Stanfield, the former premier of Nova Scotia, who had an honest but bumbling image. The Tories tried to capitalize on the public's perception that the Liberals were mismanaging the economy with the slogan, "A Progressive Conservative government will do better."
The Liberals campaigned on the slogan, "The Land is Strong", and television ads illustrating Canada's scenery. The slogan quickly became much derided, and the party had developed few real issues to campaign on. As a result, their entire campaign was viewed as being one of the worst managed in recent decades.
Progressive Conservative Party:
New Democratic Party:
Social Credit Party:
The voter turn-out was 76.7%.
One independent candidate was elected: Roch La Salle was re-elected in the Quebec riding of Joliette. La Salle had left the PC caucus to protest the party's failure to recognize what he considered Quebec's right to self-determination, and was the only candidate to win the support of the separatist Parti Québécois.
One candidate with no affiliation was elected: Lucien Lamoureux, in the Ontario riding of Stormont—Dundas—Glengarry. Lamoureux, originally elected as a Liberal, had been serving as Speaker of the House of Commons. He ran without affiliation in order to preserve his impartiality as Speaker. He retired after this Parliament, and did not run again in 1974.
The Liberals won a minority government, with the New Democratic Party, led by David Lewis, holding the balance of power. Requiring NDP support to continue, the Trudeau government would move left politically, including the creation of Petro-Canada.
This was the first of two elections in which Réal Caouette led the national Social Credit Party of Canada. Caouette, who had contested the previous two elections as leader of the breakaway Quebec-based Ralliement créditiste, had successfully taken over the leadership of the original western-based party and overseen the reintegration of the two factions. He successfully held on to the seats he had previously won under the RC banner, but these were the only ridings Social Credit managed to win as it continued to lose support outside Quebec.
|Party||Party leader||# of
|Progressive Conservative||Robert Stanfield||264||72||73||107||+48.6%||3,388,980||35.02%||+3.59pp|
|New Democratic Party||David Lewis||252||22||25||31||+40.9%||1,725,719||17.83%||+0.87pp|
|Social Credit1||Real Caouette||164||14||15||15||+7.1%||730,759||7.55%||+2.27pp|
|Sources: Elections Canada;History of Federal Ridings since 1867; Toronto Star, October 30, 1972|
"% change" refers to change from previous election
1 Indicates increase from total Social Credit + Ralliement creditiste seats/vote in 1968.
2 Roch LaSalle, who was elected in 1968 as a Progressive Conservative, won re-election as an independent.
3 Lucien Lamoureux who was elected as a Liberal but served as Speaker of the House, won re-election with no party affiliation.
4 The Rhinoceros Party ran a total of 12 candidates, but because it was not recognized by Elections Canada as a registered party, its candidates were listed as independents.
|New Democratic Party||Seats:||11||-||5||3||11||-||-||-||-||-||1||-||31|
|Parties that won no seats:|
xx - less than 0.05% of the popular vote