AED: In Canada, Liberals Retain Minority Government

The Canadian federal election has come and gone, and the results appear to be very similar to those of the 2019 election, according to an analysis by Associated Equipment Distributors (AED). While there are still races that are too close to call, the Liberals have secured another minority government. The current tally has the Liberals at 158 seats, (up three from Parliament’s dissolution), the Conservatives at 119 seats (no gain), the NDP at 25 seats (gain of one), the Bloc Quebecois at 34 (gain of two) and the Greens at two (no gain).

“AED congratulates Prime Minister Trudeau and the Liberal Party for the electoral victory and commends the successful candidates from all parties,” said AED’s President and CEO Brian P. McGuire. “The equipment industry is ready to work together with all elected officials on policies that will create jobs, economic growth and prosperity for all Canadians.”

For the Liberals, their messaging throughout the campaign on vaccinations, assault weapons and abortion galvanized many, but also lost them support. Throughout the country, they lost seats in rural ridings such as Bay of Quinte (Prince Edward County) in Ontario and South Shore – St. Margarets in Nova Scotia. However, the Liberals gained more support from urban and suburban areas, winning seats in ridings such as Markham-Unionville and Aurora – Oak Ridges – Richmond Hill in Ontario and Calgary Skyview in Alberta.

The Conservatives and Erin O’Toole came out fairly neutral. However, a tough road lies ahead for O’Toole and his leadership of the party. During the leadership race, O’Toole presented himself as “True Blue” or someone who was more socially conservative. During the campaign, his platform and policies went against this depiction, with him looking to introduce his own carbon tax and walking back on his pledge to reverse the assault weapons ban. While there is no scheduled leadership review, O’Toole’s first challenge will be winning the confidence of his caucus in their first meeting.

The NDP and Jagmeet Singh underperformed their polling as expected. While polls put them between 20-24%, they won just under 18%. They also lost their only seat in Atlantic Canada and only won one seat in Quebec. However, as Parliament is recalled, the NDP will hold more power as the Liberals will continue to require their votes to pass legislation without the threat of calling an election anytime soon as was the case over the past year.

The Bloc Quebecois continues to be very strong in Quebec and will prevent any party from being able to form an easy majority government. They will also hold the balance of power in the House of Commons, and the Liberals will look to work with them on passing legislation. The Greens collapsed in this election, only winning in Kitchener Centre due to the Liberal candidate being disqualified and former party leader Elizabeth May was reelected on Vancouver Island. Current Green Leader, Annamie Paul, finished a distant fourth in Toronto Centre, and will likely need to resign soon. Finally, the People’s Party of Canada (PPC) and Maxime Bernier didn’t win a single seat, but nearly doubled their vote from the previous election.

For the equipment industry, a Liberal minority government poses an opportunity to continue pushing its policy priorities. It is likely that right-to-repair legislation will be re-introduced in the next parliamentary session. AED plans on engaging with Members of Parliament from all parties to advocate for off-road equipment to be exempt from the legislation. Infrastructure investments also continue to be delayed, and is an area that the government can improve upon. Advocating for a 100% accelerated depreciation will also be a priority to stimulate the Canadian economy as it emerges from the pandemic. And, of course, addressing the skilled labor shortage and job training will be at the top of AED’s policy agenda.

The association is currently planning two activities to engage with Members of Parliament on these key issues and more. 

  • There will be an opportunity to arrange for your newly elected Member of Parliament to visit your facility and learn more about the industry.
  • AED is organizing another Parliament Hill Day in Ottawa on Nov. 29-30 to meet with policymakers and advocate on behalf of the industry. All Canadian members are invited to join, with more information coming soon. 

Should you be interested in either of these engagement activities, please contact Mike Dexter at [email protected].

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