Justin Trudeau’s Liberal Party retained power in a close-run federal election. The Liberals won 157 seats and 33% of the popular vote, enough to retain power in a minority parliament. Opposition leader Andrew Scheer’s Conservative Party won more votes, but far fewer seats. This was the first time since 1979 that the winner of the most seats wasn’t also the winner of the most votes.

The NDP did far better than the polls suggested at the beginning of the campaign, but worse than in 2015 and catastrophically worse than their record high in 2011. The Greens won 3 seats (a new high) but with a lower vote share than they won in 2008. The separatist Bloc Quebecois, who increased their seat count and their vote share considerable, might be pleased, but their vote didn’t seem driven by a desire for Quebec independence.

After the election, the bad news continued, and talk of Western alienation emerged as a dominant theme of the last few weeks. So did anybody win?

The speaker will unpack the results of the October 21 federal election and argue that the unusual results of the election and feelings of alienation aren’t disconnected, and that our electoral system makes our parliament look more divided than voters actually are.

Speaker: Dr. Paul Fairie

Paul Fairie has a PhD in Political Science from the University of Calgary, focusing on voter behaviour. He has taught politics courses at the University of Calgary since 2010 and ran The Globe & Mail Election Forecast in 2015. He is a Senior Research Associate at the University of Calgary, and tweets far too much, at @paulisci.

Moderator: Jeffrey Coffman

Date: Thursday, November 21, 2019 Time: Doors open 11:30 am, Presentation 12 noon, buffet lunch 12:30 pm, Q&A 1 – 1:30 pm Location: Royal Canadian Legion (north door) 324 Mayor Magrath Dr. S. Lethbridge Cost: $14 buffet lunch with dessert/coffee/tea/juice or $2 coffee/tea/juice. RSVP not required

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