U of R political scientist not shocked at election result but surprised little changed

The University of Regina’s political science professor provided his reaction to Monday’s federal election.

Jim Farney says he’s a little shocked to see a real lack of change from the 2019 election.

“We had a lot of back and forth in the campaign, so that we got a Liberal minority, (it’s) not a surprise really that we ended up how we did,” Farney said. “I was a bit surprised that there was so little changed.”

When it comes to the People’s Party of Canada splitting votes on the right, Jim Farney says the “purple wave” didn’t make a big splash locally.

“Nationally, I think they did make a difference in a handful of close ridings for Conservatives,” Farney said. “Not enough to shift the balance of power, but probably enough to move 10 or so seats.”

For the second straight federal election, the party that won did not win the popular vote.

While the federal Liberals won 158 seats, the Conservatives have received roughly 250,000 more total votes across the country. This has prompted calls once again for electoral reform in Canada.

Farney says this isn’t like electoral reform calls in the 1990’s that were due to a lack of representation of certain parties.

“This time, what we’ve seen is kind of a fragmentation that’s almost more urban-rural or demographic,” Farney said. “A regional alliance or a coming-together of parties wouldn’t necessarily solve the problem that we’re talking about.”

While the opposition Conservatives claim the Liberals will be calling another election as early as 18 months from now, Farney says whether or not another election is called really depends on the status of the major party leadership, adding even Prime Minister Justin Trudeau may not be safe seeing as he did not achieve his goal of getting a majority government.

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