Ottawa: Justin Trudeau is poised for a third term as Canada’s prime minister reported Canadian broadcasters who projected a win for his Liberal Party in Monday’s elections.
Trudeau, who was in power from 2015 has now won three general elections in less than six years.
According to New York Times, many voters are still in line casting ballots, perhaps for several more hours, it is unclear whether Trudeau’s Liberal Party would regain a majority in Parliament.
Canada has multiple time zones and accordingly, the polling stations closed at staggered times on Monday evening. Trudeau,49, won Papineau, Quebec, according to state broadcaster CBC.
Citing projections by various outlets – CTV News, Global News, and CBC, Sputnik reported that the Liberals will win Monday’s election, although it remains to be seen whether this will be a minority or majority mandate.
The Conservatives, led by Erin O’Toole, are projected to be the main opposition party. Sputnik further reported, that the Liberals currently lead in 141 ridings mostly across the country, leading the Conservatives, who are ahead in 99 ridings, and the Bloc Quebecois which has the lead in 25 of Quebec’s electoral districts, with five per cent of the votes counted.
Trudeau’s party currently commands 37.5 per cent of support, followed by the Tories with 34.0 per cent and the New Democrats (NDP) at 16.2 per cent.
All 338 of Canada’s House of Commons seats are up for grabs with the winner of the election declared based on a contentious first-past-the-post system, where candidates with the highest number of votes win without any further runoff ballots.
At least 170 seats are needed to form a majority government, although most projections currently point to a minority government.
The Liberal party leader Trudeau had called for snap election last month in the middle of the COVID pandemic assuming that his handling of the pandemic would help his government win a majority.
However, even as that bet seems to have backfired the poll win puts Trudeau back in a position he has held since the 2015 federal election, which saw the Liberals win a 184-seat majority.
COVID-19, climate change, housing affordability and gun control have all featured as major issues with voters, reported CNN but citing one political expert it said that holding a snap election in the summer during a global pandemic has angered many voters who cannot identify a compelling “ballot box” issue to justify the undertaking.
A small fierce majority of voters were also opposed to some Covid-19 protocols, especially vaccine and mask mandates and earlier this month a protester threw gravel at Trudeau at a campaign event in Ontario.