A Federal Election Is Coming Sooner Than You Think

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First it was the provincial election, then the municipal election. You thought you were going to have some time free of elections I will bet. Sorry, that’s just not going to happen.

Expect a federal election date at the latest sometime in March, 2015. Keep on reading to understand why.

OUR NEXT FEDERAL ELECTION

So you thought that the next election that this City will be seeing will be taking place in October of next year. After all, that is supposedly the time when the next Federal election is going to take place. Here is what the Elections Canada website states:

“Since May 2007, the Canada Elections Act provides that a general election be held on a fixed date: the third Monday of October in the fourth calendar year following the previous general election. As the last election took place on May 2, 2011, the next fixed election date is October 19, 2015. The Chief Electoral Officer may recommend an alternate day for a fixed-date general election if the date set for polling is not suitable for that purpose.

That said, the Canada Elections Act does not prevent a general election from being called at another date.

General elections are called when, on the advice of the Prime Minister, the Governor General dissolves Parliament. The Governor in Council (the Governor General, acting on the advice of Cabinet) sets the date of the election.”

There is a very simple reason why election will take place in March. The Prime Minister has no incentive for waiting until the fall. He has nothing to gain and everything to lose because of another scandal in which former Reporter Mike Duffy is not going to be silent:

Mike Duffy Senate expenses trial set for 41 days starting in April

Suspended Senator Mike Duffy’s fraud, bribery and breach of trust case will begin on April 7 and last for 41 days through June, lawyers agreed in court today.

These dates mean it’s likely any damaging information for the Harper government will emerge before the next federal election, expected in fall 2015, according to fixed election date legislation…

Keith Beardsley, who served as a deputy chief of staff to Prime Minister Stephen Harper for five years, told CBC News last week that the closer the trial is to the next federal election expected in 2015, the more damaging the information that could come out at trial may be for the Conservatives.

“There will be great incentive I suspect for Mr. Harper to try to get out of town before the decision comes down and before all the evidence has been heard,” said NDP House Leader Nathan Cullen Tuesday.

“This is going to be damning evidence for the Conservative Party, for Mr. Harper personally,” Cullen said. “This is what brings governments down.” (Janyce McGregor CBC News September 23, 2014)

All the signs are there for an early election. The Prime Minister must have figured that if it worked once or twice before, then keep on doing it because it gives a “human” side to him:

“Stephen Harper channelled Axl Rose for his musical encore at the annual Conservative Christmas party on Tuesday night.

Harper was on keyboards and lead vocals with his new band the Van Cats (as in 24 in French, 24 Sussex), and played the Guns N’ Roses tune “Sweet Child O’ Mine” to round out the night.

Members of Parliament, party members from the region, and political staffers took phone photos and danced in front of the stage where Harper played several numbers.

Wearing black from head to toe, he spanned the musical decades with songs by Buddy Holly, the Beatles, Johnny Cash, Grace Potter and the Nocturnals, and the French version of “Silent Night.” (Canadian Press December 9, 2014)

Then we are seeing news stories like these:

Harper is election ready. Are his opponents?

With 10 months to go before the expected October 19, 2015 election, the Harper Conservatives are running full out for re-election. Their strategy is simple. First, satisfy the party base, the some 25 per cent of eligible voters who will turn up on election day and vote Conservative. Second, suppress the Liberal vote.” (Duncan Cameron Rabble.ca December 16, 2014)

How about this one:

Conservatives are feeling decently upbeat, if not a titch smug, as they kick back for the holiday. And why wouldn’t they feel this way?

The governing side has had a good few months. Prime Minister Stephen Harper has played to his strengths in foreign affairs, smiting Russian strongman Vladimir Putin rhetorically, and standing up to Islamic State terrorists. There’ve been no new political catastrophes, beyond Julian Fantino at Veterans Affairs, which is not really new. And promises of goodies from the Treasury, the fruit of much public service attrition and belt-tightening, have begun flowing out to the suburban hockey moms and dads who will pass judgement next year on the Tory coalition.” (Michael Den Tandt, Postmedia News December 17, 2014)

What is needed however is an election issue. You can’t fight election without an issue now can you. So watch for it. If you see a big fight developing between the Conservatives and the Opposition over something, then you know that the issue will be the justification for Harper going to the Governor General and asking that Parliament be dissolved.

ARE THE LIBERALS BEHIND

Obviously, the Opposition parties are taking into account the fact that the Prime Minister might decide to call an election early on. But are they ready?

If one takes a look at the Windsor Tecumseh riding, then the answer would have to be “NO.” Shouldn’t it have all been finalized by now?

I thought that the Liberals were well-positioned in Windsor ridings. Joe Comartin is retiring while Brian Masse is easily beatable in my opinion by a credible candidate.

I have to admit that I thought that former Ontario Finance Minister Dwight Duncan would run in Windsor Tecumseh. I also thought that our former Mayor, Edgar (aka Eddie) Francis would run in Windsor West. Both of them would be running for the Liberals.

I’m not so sure now about Dwight running considering that strange poll that took place several months ago asking respondents who they would favour in Windsor Tecumseh. Moreover, he is probably making a nice salary at that law firm that he joined. As for Edgar, even though he lived in the riding previously, I’m not sure that County people would support him in Windsor Tecumseh so that a strong NDP candidate could beat him (Would MPP NDPer Percy Hatfield campaign against Edgar?). Moreover, unless it was a sure thing in Windsor West, as we have seen from the past, then Edgar won’t run. Anywhere.

The reason I raise this again is because of the campaign that Frank Schiller is running in Windsor Tecumseh to get the nomination. For a riding that I thought was already wrapped up for a big name “Liberal,” perhaps he has not yet received the memo. He is certainly hitching himself to the Justin Trudeau bandwagon:

schiller1

Moreover, he is taking serious steps to get members lined up for the Party in the riding presumably to vote for him at the nomination meeting:

schiller2

I would have thought that if Schiller is going to be the nominee, then the Liberals should have their nomination meeting ASAP because few people know him. If the election is going to be held in early spring, it does not give the Liberals much time to get their candidate some publicity.

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About the Author

Ian Shalapata
Ian Shalapata is the owner and publisher of Square Media Group. He covers politics, the police beat, community events, the arts, sports, and everything in between. His imagery and freelance contributions have appeared in select publications and for organizations in Canada and the United States. Contact Ian with story ideas.
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