Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberal Party is projected to win the largest number of seats in the country’s legislature, although it’s unclear whether his bid to seize full control of the parliament will materialize.
Canada’s ruling Liberal Party looks to have received enough votes in Monday’s federal election for incumbent PM Trudeau to form a government and remain in office, CBC News projected shortly after polls closed across the country. While predicting that Trudeau would clinch enough seats to remain prime minister, the Canadian public broadcaster noted that it is too early to say whether the result would allow him to secure a coveted parliamentary majority.
BREAKING: Justin Trudeau’s Liberals will form government, CBC News projects. It is still unclear whether it will be a minority or majority.
Although CBC has already called the election in Trudeau’s favor, vote counting is expected to drag on for several days due to the unprecedented number of mail-in ballots. Electoral officials noted previously that nearly one million mail-in ballots would not be counted until Tuesday, and that the final tally is likely to be released only on Wednesday.
More than one million ballots were mailed to constituents ahead of the election, a sharp increase from some 50,000 ballots that were sent out during the 2019 election. Many Canadians opted for mail-in voting due to Covid-19 restrictions and fear of contracting the virus. The coronavirus restrictions were also blamed for people lining up outside poll stations for hours as they were waiting to cast ballots.
I know some folks are facing long lines to vote, but there’s virtually no delay in Toronto-Danforth. I was out in 10 minutes, thanks to excellent Elections Canada triage of the lineup by poll number. pic.twitter.com/6Y8mgZq2vb
Some of the would-be voters were still stuck in voting lines in Toronto after the polls closed, with electoral officials making an exception and allowing them to vote on Monday night even after the results began rolling in.
Polls close at 9:30 and still at least 60 people in line at the distillery districts voting area. It’s going to be a long night… #Toronto#elexn44#cdnpolipic.twitter.com/WeXmiByiwL
Some very long lineups to vote in downtown Toronto as the number of polling stations has been drastically cut due to Covid 19 safety measures. #Elxn44pic.twitter.com/6mnnQwabgL
Some commentators were incredulous about the decision, taking issue with CBC announcing the tentative winner before Torontonians had finished voting.
People are still in line in Toronto voting, yet they are counting the votes and just called the government while hundreds are in line..Election fraud and voter manipulation..#JOKE
Trudeau called early national elections last month in the hope of transforming his minority government into a majority one on the back of his Covid-19 response. The Canadian PM has accused conservatives of torpedoing his legislative agenda, vowing to speed up the post-pandemic recovery by injecting some Can$100 billion (US$80 billion) into the economy once this hindrance is cleared. Trudeau has also faced accusations of being “selfish” for calling an election in the midst of a pandemic, with Jagmeet Singh, leader of Canada’s New Democratic Party, insisting that Trudeau was shifting blame on others for his own failure to govern.
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