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Who Are We Rid Of, Who Will We Miss And NO The Election Date Is Not Moving

  • Broadcast in Politics



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There is always a degree of changeover, an attrition rate, as every Parliament ends and the election process gets rolling. History tells us that it is usual for the party in power to have fewer Members of Parliament decline to run for re-election than opposition parties. The exception being when the governing party knows their time in power is ending, as in the Progressive Conservatives in 1993 when over a third of caucus saw the writing on the wall and thought better of it.

Since the nomination processes of each party are at different stages, the numbers will continue to change as October 21 approaches. But the norms seem to be holding. The governing Liberals are currently looking at a 14% attrition rate. The Conservatives sit at a 23% rate which is lower than their 29% attrition rate of the 2015 election. The New Democrats have an uncharacteristic 35% attrition rate for this fall's vote. The average rate for all parties since 2000 has been 16% attrition. Who are we happy to be rid of? Who will we miss? Who was booted from a caucus? Who has passed away while in office? Who crossed the floor? Who lost nomination? All factors in the attrition rate.

The other issue is the costs related to "severance pay" for MPs who choose not to run again and those who will lose their re-election bids. The costs are already nearing $2 million, but by the end of October could be many times that. Plus anyone with less than 6 years service will get their pension contributions returned plus interest. Not your average workplace to put it mildly. Let's try to figure the inherent real costs to the Canadian public.

Also, did you know that the election date of October 21st came very close to being changed? A constitutional challenge based on religious rights was made and Chief Electoral Officer Stephane Perrault was forced to consider the change by the Federal court. A big precedent has been set for Canada. Let's look at the decision.