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Is Canada headed for a minority government?

Last Updated Oct 9, 2019 at 10:55 am EDT

Federal party leaders Elizabeth May, Andrew Scheer, Jagmeet Singh and Justin Trudeau. CITYNEWS

CALGARY (660 NEWS) – If you trust opinion polls, Canada could see a minority government after the Oct. 21 vote.

You may think this means more co-operation among federal political parties but a political scientist says not necessarily.

Mount Royal University’s David Taras said we likely won’t see a coalition government, adding that doesn’t typically happen in Canada.

“It’s not in the Canadian tradition. A deal where the NDP and Liberals are sharing cabinet posts, we’ve never had that except during the First World War where there was the unity government.

Taras adds, a minority government – either Conservative or Liberal – could spell bad news for the energy sector because it means mean more influence for the Greens, NDP and Bloc Quebecois who oppose pipeline development.

In the past, minority governments have been defeated by no-confidence votes resulting in another election. The last time this occurred was in 2011 when the Conservatives under Stephen Harper lost a non-confidence vote. The Tories eventually won a majority government in the election.

Taras anticipates this likely won’t happen for at least another year.

“Minority governments usually last about two years, although it could be six months, it could be a year and a half. None of the parties have enough money for an early election.”

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The latest opinion polls from 338 Canada project 162 seats for the Liberals and 130 for the Conservatives. The Bloc is in third with 21 projected seats followed by the NDP at 20. The number needed to form a majority government is 169.

Forum Research seems to swing the balance of power the other way, leaning towards a Conservative minority.

Early in the election campaign, NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh promised he would not allow a Conservative minority to govern the country.