By-elections to the 43rd Canadian Parliament

2021–present →

By-elections to the 43rd Canadian Parliament were held to fill vacancies in the House of Commons of Canada between the 2019 federal election and the 2021 federal election. The 43rd Canadian Parliament has existed since 2019 with the membership of its House of Commons having been determined by the results of the Canadian federal election held on October 21, 2019. The Liberal Party of Canada had a minority government during this Parliament.

Two by-elections were held on October 26, 2020 due to the resignation of Finance Minister Bill Morneau (Liberal, Toronto Centre) on August 17, 2020 to run for Secretary-General of the OECD,[1] and the resignation of Michael Levitt (Liberal, York Centre) effective September 1, 2020 to become the President and CEO of the Canadian Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Centre for Holocaust Studies.[2]

A third by-election was pending in the riding of Haldimand—Norfolk following the resignation of Conservative MP Diane Finley on May 20, 2021, but was cancelled due to the 2021 Canadian federal election being called for September 20, 2021.[3]

The writ for a by-election must be dropped no sooner than 11 days and no later than 180 days after the Chief Electoral Officer is officially notified of a vacancy via a warrant issued by the Speaker. Under the Canada Elections Act, the minimum length of a campaign is 36 days between dropping the writ and election day.[4]

Overview

By-election Date Incumbent Party Winner Party Cause Retained
York Centre October 26, 2020 Michael Levitt Liberal Ya'ara Saks Liberal Resigned to become CEO of the Canadian Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Centre for Holocaust Studies Yes
Toronto Centre October 26, 2020 Bill Morneau Liberal Marci Ien Liberal Resigned to run for Secretary-General of the OECD Yes


October 26, 2020 by-elections

Scheduling

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced both by-elections on Friday September 18, along with Liberal candidates for each riding.[5] Annamie Paul, the newly elected leader of the Green Party and Green candidate for Toronto Centre, called on the government to delay the by-elections, citing increased restrictions on movement and activity in Toronto in light of rising cases of COVID-19.[6] Trudeau rejected changing the schedule, saying that the by-elections have to be held within a certain time period of the seats becoming vacant, and that the pandemic may be worse later in the year.[7] Any changes to by-election dates would be approved by the cabinet, but would have to first be proposed by the independent Chief Electoral Officer.[7] Paul responded by calling on parliament to pass new legislation – proposed by Elections Canada – that would give the agency more flexibility to respond to the pandemic.[8]

Toronto Centre

Main article: 2020 Toronto Centre federal by-election

The riding of Toronto Centre was vacated on August 17, 2020 following the resignation of Liberal MP and Minister of Finance Bill Morneau to seek election as Secretary General of the OECD[1] Morneau had represented the riding since 2015, while the Liberals have held the riding since 1988.

Note: Candidates' names are as registered with Elections Canada.[9]

Canadian federal by-election, October 26, 2020: Toronto Centre
Resignation of Bill Morneau
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Marci Ien 10,579 41.98 –15.39
Green Annamie Paul 8,250 32.73 +25.66
New Democratic Brian Chang 4,280 16.98 –5.29
Conservative Benjamin Gauri Sharma 1,435 5.69 –6.44
People's Baljit Bawa 271 1.08
Libertarian Keith Komar 135 0.54
Independent Kevin Clarke 123 0.49
Free Party Canada Dwayne Cappelletti 74 0.29
No affiliation Above Znoneofthe 56 0.22
Total valid votes/Expense limit 25,203    
Total rejected ballots
Turnout 25,203 30.96 -35.12
Eligible voters 81,400
Liberal hold Swing -20.53

York Centre

Main article: 2020 York Centre federal by-election

The riding of York Centre became vacant on September 1, 2020, when Liberal MP Michael Levitt resigned to become the president and CEO of the Canadian Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Centre for Holocaust Studies.[2] The riding had been held by Levitt since 2015, when he won the riding from Conservative incumbent Mark Adler.

By September 7, five candidates had launched their campaigns for the Liberal nomination including 2019 Thornhill candidate Gary Gladstone, former chief fundraiser of the provincial Ontario Liberal Fund, Bobby Walman, as well as former Canadian Jewish News editor Yoni Goldstein.[10] It was announced on September 17 that communications specialist Ya'ara Saks would be appointed as the Liberal candidate.[11]

Rumoured candidates for the Conservative nomination included 2019 candidate Rachel Willson, York Centre MPP Roman Baber, and former parliamentary staffer Melissa Lantsman; they all declined.[12][13][14] Wilson announced on September 18 that she would not be running.[citation needed] The Conservatives ultimately nominated Julius Tiangson, who previously ran for the party in Mississauga Centre in 2015.[15]

The NDP candidate, Andrea Vásquez Jiménez,[16] previously ran for the seat in the 2019 election.

People's Party of Canada leader Maxime Bernier said he intended to run in either the Toronto Centre or York Centre by-election.[17] Bernier decided he would run in York Centre when the by-elections were announced.[18]

Perennial candidate John "The Engineer" Turmel registered as an Independent candidate.[16]

The Speaker's warrant regarding the vacancy was received on September 1, 2020; under the Parliament of Canada Act the writ for a by-election had to be dropped no later than February 28, 2021, 180 days after the Chief Electoral Officer was officially notified of the vacancy via a warrant issued by the Speaker.[19] Under the Canada Elections Act, the minimum length of a campaign is 36 days between dropping the writ and election day.[19]

Note: Candidates' names are as registered with Elections Canada.[16]

Canadian federal by-election, October 26, 2020: York Centre
Resignation of Michael Levitt
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Ya'ara Saks 8,253 45.70 −4.50
Conservative Julius Tiangson 7,552 41.82 +5.11
New Democratic Andrea Vásquez Jiménez 1,046 5.79 −4.05
People's Max Bernier 642 3.56
Green Sasha Zavarella 461 2.55 −0.7
Independent John The Engineer Turmel 104 0.58
Total valid votes/Expense limit 18,058
Total rejected ballots
Turnout 18,058 25.64 −36.12
Eligible voters 70,434
Liberal hold Swing −4.81

Cancelled by-election

Haldimand—Norfolk

The riding of Haldimand—Norfolk had been vacant effective May 20, 2021 following the resignation of Conservative MP Diane Finley announced on May 11, 2021.[3] The riding had been held by Finley since it was created in 2004.

The date of the by-election had to be announced between May 31, 2021 and November 16, 2021.[20] However, the by-election was cancelled and replaced by the federal election which was called on August 15 to be held on September 20.[21]

Prior to Finley's resignation, lawyer and 2020 Conservative leadership candidate Leslyn Lewis had been nominated as the party's candidate in the constituency for the next federal election,[22] while Karen Matthews had been nominated as the Liberal candidate.[23]

Canadian federal by-election, Cancelled: Haldimand—Norfolk
Resignation of Diane Finley
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Leslyn Lewis
Liberal Karen Matthews
New Democratic
Green
People's
Christian Heritage
Total valid votes/Expense limit
Total rejected ballots
Turnout
Eligible voters

See also

Notes

References

  1. ^ a b Zimonjic, Peter; Cochrane, David (August 17, 2020). "Bill Morneau resigns as finance minister and MP, will seek to head up OECD". CBC News. Retrieved August 18, 2020.
  2. ^ a b "Toronto Liberal MP resigns to helm Jewish human rights organization". CBC News. August 4, 2020. Retrieved August 4, 2020.
  3. ^ a b "Veteran Conservative MP Diane Finley resigns seat in House of Commons". CTV News. May 11, 2021. Retrieved May 12, 2021.
  4. ^ "Journalists vying for seat in Commons shows politics changing: Spector". The Hill Times. August 12, 2013. Retrieved August 4, 2020.
  5. ^ Gilmore, Rachel (2020-09-18). "PM Trudeau announces two Toronto-area byelections to be held Oct. 26". CTVNews. Retrieved 2020-10-14.
  6. ^ Staff writer (2020-10-11). "Green Party's Annamie Paul calls for suspension of Toronto by-elections". NOW Magazine. Retrieved 2020-10-14.
  7. ^ a b Rabson, Mia (2020-10-09). "Byelections being held now because pandemic risks could get worse: Trudeau". CBC News. The Canadian Press. Retrieved 2020-10-09.
  8. ^ Alhmidi, Maan (2020-10-13). "New law needed to allow safe byelections in COVID-19 pandemic: Greens' Annamie Paul". CTVNews. Retrieved 2020-10-14.
  9. ^ Final list will be available on 7 October. "List of candidates - Toronto Centre (Ontario)". Elections Canada. Retrieved 7 October 2020.
  10. ^ "Saks and Gladstone entering hotly contested Liberal nomination race in York Centre". The Hill Times. September 7, 2020. Retrieved September 17, 2020.
  11. ^ Gilmore, Rachel (September 17, 2020). "Broadcast journalist Marci Ien will be Liberal nomination in Morneau's former riding". CTV News. Retrieved September 17, 2020.
  12. ^ Rana, Abbas (August 31, 2020). "Ontario MPP Baber, former senior staffer Lantsman, and former candidate Willson said to be eyeing Conservative nomination in York Centre". The Hill Times. Retrieved September 4, 2020.
  13. ^ Baber, Roman [@Roman_Baber] (September 1, 2020). "(1/3) I'm grateful for the support received in the last day. Despite media speculation, I am not eyeing a Federal nomination at this time" (Tweet). Retrieved September 6, 2020 – via Twitter.
  14. ^ Lantsman, Melissa [@MelissaLantsman] (September 3, 2020). "Thanks 🙏 for all of the love. This ⬇️ is a big decision and for me, it's not the right time" (Tweet). Retrieved September 6, 2020 – via Twitter.
  15. ^ Conservative Party [@CPC_HQ] (September 23, 2020). "Congrats to Ryan Lester & Julius Tiangson on their nominations in the by-elections for Toronto Centre & York Centre" (Tweet). Retrieved September 24, 2020 – via Twitter.
  16. ^ a b c Final list will be available on 7 October. "List of candidates - York Centre (Ontario)". Elections Canada. Retrieved 7 October 2020.
  17. ^ "Maxime Bernier plans to run in a Toronto-area byelection". iPolitics. September 1, 2020. Retrieved September 2, 2020.
  18. ^ Benzie, Robert (September 18, 2020). "Maxime Bernier, Marci Ien running in two Toronto byelections called for Oct. 26". Welland Tribune. Retrieved September 19, 2020.
  19. ^ a b "Vacant Seats in the House of Commons Since the 2019 General Election". Elections Canada. Retrieved September 1, 2020.
  20. ^ Grenier, Eric (13 May 2021). "How a vacancy in a safe Conservative seat could mean headaches for Erin O'Toole". CBC News. Retrieved 16 May 2021.
  21. ^ Aiello, Rachel (August 15, 2021). "Trudeau calls federal election, voters to go to the polls Sept. 20". CTV News. Bell Media. Retrieved August 15, 2021.
  22. ^ Hristova, Bobby (October 16, 2020). "Leslyn Lewis acclaimed in Haldimand-Norfolk after local entrepreneur denied candidacy". CBC News. Retrieved May 12, 2021.
  23. ^ "Karen Matthews acclaimed federal Liberal candidate for Haldimand Norfolk". The Haldimand Press. March 25, 2021. Retrieved May 12, 2021.