Canadian Three-way Split Might Enable Harper to Pull a Cameron in Fall Election

Canada’s increasingly unpopular Conservative government stumbled through a bruising spring in which it enraged the nation and alienated some of its most faithful supporters. But the prime minister, Stephen Harper, is entering the race for re-election this fall with the wind at its back.
The reason parallels the situation in the United Kingdom, where David Cameron returned with a majority of seats conjured from a bare plurality of votes. Opposition to Harper is evenly divided between two major opposition parties – the Liberals and the New Democrats – so the one-third of voters who vote Conservative are set once again to choose Canada’s national government. Ted Morton, a former Conservative politician and senior fellow at the Manning Foundation thinktank in Calgary said “Most analysts here think that vote-splitting will help Harper and the Conservatives,” As evidence, he points to the last election, in which Harper prefigured Cameron’s feat by winning a solid majority of seats with fewer than 40% of votes.



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