Canada elections: Jagmeet Singh’s NDP wins 25 seats, well short of expectations

PM Justin Trudeau’s call to voters to avoid opting for smaller parties in the Canada elections may have dealt Jagmeet Singh’s New Democratic Party (NDP) a blow as it won only 25 seats in the House of Commons
The New Democratic Party (NDP) leader Jagmeet Singh gestures alongside wife Gurkiran Kaur Sidhu after addressing the media in Vancouver, British Columbia on September 20, 2021 following the Canada elections that Justin Trudeau’s Liberals won. (AFP)
The New Democratic Party (NDP) leader Jagmeet Singh gestures alongside wife Gurkiran Kaur Sidhu after addressing the media in Vancouver, British Columbia on September 20, 2021 following the Canada elections that Justin Trudeau’s Liberals won. (AFP)
Published on Sep 22, 2021 12:03 PM IST
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Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s clarion call to voters to avoid opting for smaller parties in the 2021 Canada elections - in what is called split-voting - seems to have dealt Jagmeet Singh’s New Democratic Party (NDP) a blow. Tipped to win about 40 seats in the September 20 snap polls, the NDP settled for 25 – going up marginally from the 24 it had won in 2019.

Jagmeet Singh and his NDP clearly failed to live up to their expectations in the just concluded Canada elections despite recording 17.7% of the vote share.

The NDP will, however, return to its status of putting pressure on PM Justin Trudeau of the Liberal Party to deliver on issues that the NDP pursues as the fourth largest party in the 338-seat House of Commons.

Days before the Canada elections, Justin Trudeau and his main rival Erin O’Toole of the Conservative Party had both urged voters across the country to avoid backing smaller parties.

Justin Trudeau and his Liberals won the election, but yet again settled for a minority government.

Jagmeet Singh addressed a post-election press conference in Vancouver on Tuesday and said the NDP was “proud” of its electoral performance. “Despite our number, we were the most successful opposition party in the last parliament, and this parliament looks pretty much the same,” he said, according to CTV News.

Jagmeet Singh said he had spoken to Justin Trudeau on Monday night and pointed that “we’ll not hesitate to provide support to get things done, and he knows my priorities”.

However, the NDP was still unable to even become the third-largest party in the House of Commons.

Just like it had done in 2019, the Bloc Quebecois won more seats this time as well, getting 34. That gives Justin Trudeau options in terms of turning to another party for support to pass key legislation.

There was no immediate question of a leadership shake-up within the NDP even though the party failed to get near its 2015 seat share of 44.

At different points during the campaign period for the 2021 Canada elections, Jagmeet Singh’s NDP was tipped to secure 20% vote share translating to 40 or more seats, according to surveys, but was unable to touch those figures.

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Sunday, November 28, 2021