NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh speaks to the media after the Canadian federal election in Burnaby, B.C., on Tuesday, October 22, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh speaks to the media after the Canadian federal election in Burnaby, B.C., on Tuesday, October 22, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette

Scheer says Canada more divided than ever, as NDP and Bloc hold cards close

While Liberals were shut out of two key prairie provinces, they took two-thirds of the seats in Ontario

Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer offered the Liberals no help Tuesday to try and piece together national unity after an election contest that’s left the country divided on regional lines.

Scheer seized on his party’s success in the popular vote, the complete annihilation of the Liberals in Alberta and Saskatchewan and the re-emergence of a strong Bloc Quebecois as evidence that whatever pleasure the Liberals might take from Monday’s night results has also come at a cost.

Trudeau spent 40 days demonizing the provinces and anyone else who disagreed with him, said Scheer. The choice is his about what happens next.

“Justin Trudeau now has to make a decision if he’s going to change course, have a more co-operative approach with all provinces, or if he’s going to continue down on this path,” Scheer said in Regina.

“We’re going to do everything we can to fight for a united Canada.”

But the results Monday night also showed a divide for the Conservatives to contend with.

While the Liberals were shut out of two key prairie provinces, they took two-thirds of the seats in Ontario. The Conservatives failed to make any significant gains in Ontario and also lost one of their highest-profile MPs — deputy leader Lisa Raitt. The Conservatives also lost seats in Quebec, where the Bloc Quebecois snatched away many of their hoped-for gains.

All told, the Liberals won 157 seats to the Conservatives’ 122 even as the Tories claimed 34.4 per cent of the popular vote compared to the Liberals’ 33.1 per cent.

Scheer will face a potential leadership review in six months, at the party’s convention in Toronto next year.

He, and those closest to him, were adamant Tuesday that he will remain in place, though there was grumbling among those farther away from his orbit about the party’s failure to capitalize on the multiple scandals around the Trudeau Liberals.

READ MORE: Trudeau has won the most seats — but not a majority. What happens next?

Conservatives say they threw all the resources they had at this election, but always knew the strong drive for change that unseated them in 2015 wasn’t a powerful enough force, at a national level, to take Trudeau down.

After 2015, the plan and budget they put in place had always been set with a long game in mind: a potential minority in 2019, and then a majority after that government fell, party sources said on background Tuesday, granted anonymity to talk about internal strategy.

Scheer also characterized Monday’s results that way.

“We’re going to work as hard as we can in the coming days to prepare the groundwork for the next campaign,” he said. ”This is a first step.”

The New Democrats and Bloc Quebecois held their cards close, and did not discuss any negotiating points they plan to raise with the Trudeau government after Monday’s federal election reduced the Liberals to a minority.

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh said Tuesday he won’t negotiate an arrangement with the Trudeau government in public. His party won 24 seats, a worse showing than the 44 it won in 2015, and it was nearly wiped out in Quebec where it clung to just one.

But Singh said he will fight for the objectives he laid out in the federal election campaign, including helping students, moving ahead with publicly-funded pharmacare and fighting climate change.

“I am hoping that Mr. Trudeau respects the fact there’s a minority government now which means we’ve got to work together,” Singh said in Burnaby, B.C.

With Liberals just 13 seats shy of a majority, the fourth-place NDP still holds some sway with the resurrected Bloc Quebecois that will return to Ottawa with 32 seats.

Bloc Quebecois Leader Yves-Francois Blanchet said it’s not his job to make the new Parliament work, and that his guiding priority will be promoting Quebec interests.

He said he will not drive a sovereignty agenda, saying that will be dictated by a rhythm and timing dictated by the Quebec people.

“I expect us to have quite a good leverage,” said Blanchet.

Trudeau showed up at a Metro station in his Montreal riding of Papineau Tuesday to thank his constituents after the Liberals secured a minority-government victory.

Only a few hours after he left the stage at Liberal party election headquarters in Montreal, Trudeau stood at the top of the station’s escalators to shake hands with commuters, thanking them as they congratulated him on his electoral success and posing for photos when asked.

Trudeau made a similar appearance the morning after the Liberals won the 2015 election, surprising commuters in Montreal who were not expecting to see the prime minister on their way to school or work.

Unlike Scheer, Singh and Blanchet, Trudeau was not scheduled to hold a news conference Tuesday.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Black Press file photo
Fraud scam, car in ditch among weekly Kitimat RCMP report

Kitimat RCMP report from Dec. 18 to 24

(Mountainview Lodge photo)
Santa and Mrs. Claus payed a special visit to the residents at Mountainview Lodge in Kitimat back in December to help raise their spirits during the difficult Christmas season.
Good News, Kitimat!

Bringing some local good news to your week

Black Press file photo
Clare’s Corner: Baking the day away

My grandmother was a fantastic baker, and it’s a hobby she’s passed down through generations

A BC Hydro outage is affecting nearly 4000 customers in Kitimat. The cause of the outage is under investigation. (Screenshot/BC Hydro Outage Map)
Cable fault responsible for Kitimat power outage, BC Hydro says

At its peak, the BC Hydro power outage affected near 4,000 customers

A scene from “Canada and the Gulf War: In their own words,” a video by The Memory Project, a program of Historica Canada, is shown in this undated illustration. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO - Historica Canada
New video marks Canada’s contributions to first Gulf War on 30th anniversary

Veterans Affairs Canada says around 4,500 Canadian military personnel served during the war

Gin, one of the Kantymirs’ two sheep. (Martha Wickett-Salmon Arm Observer)
Sheep start up ATV, sit in cars and go for walks in Salmon Arm

Until they bought two sheep, Ken and Karleen Kantymir didin’t realize just how social the animals are

Heather Lucier, a pastor at Kelowna Harvest Fellowship, speaks to an RCMP officer outside of Harvest Ministries on Sunday, Jan. 10. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)
Kelowna church fined 2nd time for violating public health order

Harvest Ministries in Kelowna has previously said they will fight the tickets in court

Powell River-Sunshine Coast MLA Nicholas Simons was appointed to the NDP cabinet as minister of social development and poverty reduction after the October 2020 B.C. election. (Hansard TV)
B.C. job training fund increased for developmentally disabled

COVID-19 has affected 1,100 ‘precariously employed’ people

B.C. driver’s licence and identity cards incorporate medical services, but the passport option for land crossings is being phased out. (B.C. government)
B.C. abandons border ID cards built into driver’s licence

$35 option costing ICBC millions as demand dwindles

sdf
2nd in-school violence incident in Mission, B.C, ends in arrest

RCMP notified of local Instagram page with videos (now deleted) showing student assaults, bullying

BC Emergency Health Services has deployed the Major Incident Response Team (MIRRT) as COVID-19 positive cases rise in the Williams Lake region. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
B.C.’s rapid response paramedics deployed to Williams Lake as COVID-19 cases climb

BC Emergency Health Services has sent a Major Incident Rapid Response Team to the lakecity

(Photo submitted)
RCMP say ice climber seriously injured after reportedly falling 12 metres near Abraham Lake

Police say man’s injuries were serious but not life-threatening

U.S. military units march in front of the Capitol, Monday, Jan. 18, 2021 in Washington, as they rehearse for President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration ceremony, which will be held at the Capitol on Wednesday. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Biden aims for unifying speech at daunting moment for U.S.

President Donald Trump won’t be there to hear it

Most Read