Archive for December, 2008

62% voted against the Conservatives so …

Wednesday, December 3rd, 2008

In the last few days I’ve seen a few comments to the effect that 62% of  Canadian voters did not vote for the Conservatives in the last election, which calls the government’s legitimacy into question.

To put that in perspective, consider that one needs to go back to the 1984 landslide to find an election where a majority of the popular vote went to the leading party.

So were all those governments including Chretien’s three consecutive majorities illegitimate because the other parties received more votes?

Canadian Election

Leading Party & Leader

Number of Seats Won

Percent of Total Seats

Percent of Popular Vote

Percent Voting for Other Parties

2008

Conservative (Harper)

143 of 308

46.4%

37.6%

62.4%

2006

Conservative (Harper)

124 of 308

40.3%

36.3%

63.7%

2004

Liberal (Martin)

135 of 308

43.8%

36.7%

63.3%

2000

Liberal (Chrétien)

172 of 301

57.1%

40.8%

59.2%

1997

Liberal (Chrétien)

155 of 301

51.5%

38.5%

61.5%

1993

Liberal (Chrétien)

177 of 295

60.0%

41.2%

58.8%

1988

PC (Mulroney)

169 of 295

57.3%

43.0%

57%

1984

PC (Mulroney)

211 of 282

74.8%

50.0%

50.0%

Etc.

UPDATE:  My apologies for the ugly table formatting. At least the table is showing up now – originally it displayed fine in Firefox but not in Internet Explorer – in fact having a table in this post made all of my previous posts disappear. If anyone knows how to insert Word tables into WordPress while retaining the formatting, please let me know.

Is this really necessary?

Monday, December 1st, 2008

I’m not going to call it a coup, or even illegitimate or undemocratic, because apparently Canada’s democratic tradition allows for coalition governments.

However I have a hard time buying the argument that a change of government is necessary at this time.