Canadians will head to the polls on September 20.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau confirmed on Sunday that he spoke with the newly-minted Gov. Gen. Mary Simon earlier in the day and she approved his request to dissolve Parliament. This triggered the issuing of the election writs and formally beginning Canada’s 44th federal election.

The campaign will last 36 days — the minimum campaign length permitted by law. Election Day will be Sept. 20, meaning the campaign will be a tight five weeks long.

Federal Election

Governor-General Mary Simon holds the formal power to dissolve Parliament, leading to an election. (Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press)

Trudeau arrived at Rideau Hall at 10:20 a.m. alongside his wife, Sophie Gregoire Trudeau, and their three children: Xavier, Ella-Grace and Hadrien. The family walked over from their home at Rideau Cottage, just a few minutes away from the official residence of the governor-general.

“In this pivotal, consequential moment, who wouldn’t want a say? Who wouldn’t want their chance to help decide where our country goes from here?” he said.

Opposition parties have argued against an early federal election call. Canada’s next fixed-date election was set for October 2023.

From the podium outside of Rideau Hall this morning, Trudeau pushed back against his critics, saying Canadians deserve a chance to decide who should guide the country out of the pandemic.

Opposition To The Federal Election

Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole spoke shortly after Trudeau and quickly criticized the decision to send Canadians out to the polls in the midst of the COVID-19 fourth wave.

“I will always respect people’s decisions,” he said in French, noting tools like rapid testing and masking can also be used to limit the spread of the virus.

Federal Election

Conservative Party leader Erin O’Toole at a news conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, in August of 2020. (Dave Chan/AFP/Getty Images)

“We need to educate, not mandate.”

“This election is not about the next week, the month, or the next year. It’s about the next four years. It’s about who will deliver the economic recovery Canada needs,” said O’Toole at his campaign launch.

O’Toole also wants to use the short campaign to reintroduce himself to Canadians and try to grow his party’s tent with a climate plan that includes a form of carbon pricing for consumers.


Published by HOLR Magazine