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By-elections to the 40th Canadian Parliament


By-elections to the 40th Canadian Parliament

By-elections to the 40th Canadian Parliament were held to fill vacancies in the House of Commons of Canada between the 2008 federal election and the 2011 federal election. The Conservative Party of Canada led a minority government for the entirety of the 40th Canadian Parliament, with little change from by-elections.

Ten seats became vacant during the life of the Parliament. Seven of these vacancies were filled through by-elections, and three seats remained vacant when the 2011 federal election was called.


  • Overview 1
  • 2009 2
    • New Westminster—Coquitlam 2.1
    • Cumberland—Colchester—Musquodoboit Valley 2.2
    • Montmagny—L'Islet—Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup 2.3
    • Hochelaga 2.4
  • 2010 3
    • Background 3.1
    • Timing 3.2
    • Dauphin—Swan River—Marquette 3.3
    • Vaughan 3.4
    • Winnipeg North 3.5
  • 2011 4
    • Cancelled by-elections 4.1
      • Calgary Centre-North 4.1.1
      • Haute-Gaspésie—La Mitis—Matane—Matapédia 4.1.2
      • Prince George—Peace River 4.1.3
  • See also 5
  • References 6


By-election Date Incumbent Party Winner Party Cause Retained
Calgary Centre-North 2011 Jim Prentice      Conservative NA NA Resignation NA
Prince George—Peace River 2011 Jay Hill      Conservative NA NA Resignation NA
Haute-Gaspésie—La Mitis—Matane—Matapédia 2011 Jean-Yves Roy      Bloc Québécois NA NA Resignation NA
Vaughan November 29, 2010 Maurizio Bevilacqua      Liberal Julian Fantino      Conservative Resignation No
Dauphin—Swan River—Marquette November 29, 2010 Inky Mark      Conservative Robert Sopuck      Conservative Resignation Yes
Winnipeg North November 29, 2010 Judy Wasylycia-Leis      NDP Kevin Lamoureux      Liberal Resignation No
Cumberland—Colchester—Musquodoboit Valley November 9, 2009 Bill Casey      Independent Scott Armstrong      Conservative Resignation No
Hochelaga November 9, 2009 Réal Ménard      Bloc Québécois Daniel Paillé      Bloc Québécois Resignation Yes
Montmagny—L'Islet—Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup November 9, 2009 Paul Crête      Bloc Québécois Bernard Généreux      Conservative Resignation No
New Westminster—Coquitlam November 9, 2009 Dawn Black      NDP Fin Donnelly      NDP Resignation Yes


Four by-elections to fill vacant seats in the House of Commons were held on November 9, 2009. Governor General Michaëlle Jean, acting on the advice of Prime Minister Stephen Harper, issued writs of election for the by-elections on October 4.[1] All four vacancies were caused by resignations.

New Westminster—Coquitlam

The riding of New Westminster—Coquitlam had been vacant since April 13, when Dawn Black resigned to run in the British Columbia provincial election.

By-election on November 9, 2009

resignation of Dawn Black

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
New Democratic Fin Donnelly 12,129 49.6% +7.8%
Conservative Diana Dilworth 8,753 35.8% -3.0%
Liberal Ken Lee 2,514 10.3% -1.0%
Green Rebecca Helps 1,046 4.3% -2.9%
Total valid votes 24,442
Total rejected ballots
Turnout 24,442 29.9%
     New Democrat hold

Cumberland—Colchester—Musquodoboit Valley

The riding of Cumberland—Colchester—Musquodoboit Valley had been vacant since April 30, 2009, when Bill Casey resigned to accept a posting from the provincial government of Nova Scotia.[2]

Scott Armstrong was nominated unopposed by the Conservatives. Farmer Jim Burrows defeated 2008 Liberal candidate Tracy Parsons for the Liberal nomination on September 12, 2009.

By-election on November 9, 2009

Resignation of Bill Casey

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Scott Armstrong 11,167 45.84% +37.01%
New Democratic Mark Austin 6,267 25.73% +13.41%
Liberal Jim Burrows 5,193 21.32% +12.87%
Green Jason Blanch 803 3.30% +3.30%
Christian Heritage Jim Hnatiuk 776 3.19% +3.19%
Independent Kate Graves 149 0.61%
Total valid votes 24,359
Total rejected ballots
Turnout 24,359 35.7%
     Conservative gain from Independent


The riding of Montmagny—L'Islet—Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup had been vacant since May 21, when Paul Crête resigned to run as a Parti Québécois candidate in the provincial Rivière-du-Loup by-election.

According to the Regina Leader-Post, Bernard Généreux won the by-election.[3]
By-election on November 9, 2009

resignation of Paul Crête

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Bernard Généreux[4] 12,162 42.7% +12.07%
Bloc Québécois Nancy Gagnon[5] 10,737 37.7% -8.33%
Liberal Marcel Catellier[6][7] 3,768 13.2% -2.15%
New Democratic François Lapointe[8] 1,363 4.8% -0.65%
Green Charles Marois[9] 472 1.7% -0.49%
Total valid votes 28,502
Total rejected ballots
Turnout 28,502 36.6%
     Conservative gain from Bloc Québécois


On June 25, 2009, Réal Ménard announced that he would resign from the Hochelaga constituency effective September 16 to run as a Vision Montreal candidate for borough mayor of Mercier–Hochelaga-Maisonneuve in the fall 2009 municipal elections in Montreal.[10]

Daniel Paillé won the by-election according to CBC News.[11]

By-election on November 9, 2009

resignation of Réal Ménard

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Bloc Québécois Daniel Paillé[12] 8,972 51.2% +1.47%
New Democratic Jean-Claude Rocheleau[13] 3,421 19.5% +5.06%
Liberal Robert David[14] 2,510 14.3% -6.36%
Conservative Stéphanie Cloutier[15] 1,784 10.2% +1.01%
Green Christine Lebel[16] 571 3.3% -0.95% Gabrielle Anctil[17] 129 0.7% +0.2%
Marxist–Leninist Christine Dandenault[18] 79 0.5% +0.12%
Independent John Turmel[18] 71 0.4% ø
Total valid votes 17,526
Total rejected ballots
Turnout 17,526 22.3%
     Bloc Québécois hold


Three by-elections were held on November 29, 2010, in order to fill vacancies in the House of Commons of Canada for two seats in Manitoba and one seat in Ontario. Until pre-empted by the issuance of writs for the 41st federal election, a further three by-elections were pending for one seat in Alberta, one seat in Quebec and one seat in British Columbia.[19]


The three seats were vacant due to the resignations of Prince George—Peace River also became vacant in late October or November, however these vacancies occurred too late to be included in the November 29 by-election call.


Under Canadian election law, a by-election must be formally announced no earlier than 11 days and no later than 180 days after a vacancy officially takes effect. Due to the timing of the respective resignations, this means that the date of the Winnipeg North by-election had to be announced by October 27, while the scheduling period for all of the other four by-elections extended into 2011.[20] Consequently, the Winnipeg North by-election had to be called at least a week before the window opened in which Prince George—Peace River and Haute-Gaspésie—La Mitis—Matane—Matapédia by-elections could be called.

When multiple vacancies exist, it is customary, though not mandatory, for by-elections to be held on the same date.

Dauphin—Swan River—Marquette

A by-election was held in the Manitoba federal riding of Dauphin—Swan River—Marquette as incumbent MP Inky Mark resigned effective September 15, 2010 as the Conservative Party of Canada Member of Parliament in order to run unsuccessfully for mayor of Dauphin, Manitoba.[21]
By-election on November 29, 2010

resignation of Inky Mark on September 15, 2010

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Robert Sopuck 8,176 56.7% -4.66%
New Democratic Denise Harder 3,785 26.3% +9.67%
Liberal Christopher Scott Sarna 1,481 10.3% -3.67%
Green Kate Storey 809 5.6% -0.91%
Christian Heritage Jerome Dondo 160 1.1% -0.10%
Total valid votes 14,411
Total rejected ballots
Turnout 26.9
     Conservative hold


A by-election was held in the Ontario federal riding of Vaughan as Liberal Maurizio Bevilacqua resigned to run successfully for mayor of Vaughan, Ontario.[22]

By-election on November 29, 2010

resignation of Maurizio Bevilacqua on September 2, 2010

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Julian Fantino 19,260 49.1 +14.8
Liberal Tony Genco 18,263 46.6 -2.6
New Democratic Kevin Bordian 673 1.7 -7.9
Green Claudia Rodriguez-Larrain 477 1.2 -5.7
Libertarian Paolo Fabrizio 246 0.6
Progressive Canadian Dorian Baxter 112 0.3
Independent Leslie Bory 110 0.3
United Brian Jedan 55 0.1
Total valid votes 39,196
Total rejected ballots
Turnout 32.4
     Conservative gain from Liberal

Winnipeg North

A by-election was held in the Manitoba federal riding of Winnipeg North after New Democratic Party MP Judy Wasylycia-Leis resigned to run unsuccessfully for Mayor of Winnipeg. The seat had been vacant for almost seven months by the time of the vote.

With the addition of the Pirate Party candidate Jeff Coleman, the by-election in Winnipeg North marked the first election or by-election to run a member of the Pirate Party outside of Europe.

By-election on November 29, 2010

resignation of Judy Wasylycia-Leis on April 30, 2010

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Kevin Lamoureux 7,303 46.3 +37.08
New Democratic Kevin Chief 6,508 41.2 −21.41
Conservative Julie Javier 1,645 10.4 −11.95
Green John Harvie 114 0.7 −4.05
Pirate Jeff Coleman 94 0.6 N/A
Communist Frank Komarniski 71 0.4 −0.27
Christian Heritage Eric Truijen 45 0.3 N/A
Total valid votes 15,780
Total rejected ballots
Turnout 30.8
     Liberal gain from New Democrat


Cancelled by-elections

Until pre-empted by the issuance of writs for the 41st federal election, three federal by-elections were pending in 2011 to fill vacant seats in the House of Commons.

Calgary Centre-North

A by-election call was pending in the Alberta federal riding of Calgary Centre-North, where Conservative MP Jim Prentice announced on November 4, 2010 he was resigning as Environment Minister effective immediately and that he would be resigning as Member of Parliament for Calgary Centre-North by the end of the year to take a job as vice-chairman of the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce.[23] Prentice resigned as the Conservative Member of Parliament for Calgary Centre-North on November 14, 2010.[24] The Prime Minister theoretically had until May 2, 2011 to call a by-election.

Soon after the announcement of Prentice's impending resignation, both Ric McIver and Barb Higgins – the second and third place mayoralty finishers in the 2010 municipal election in Calgary – expressed interest in running for the Conservative Party nomination in Calgary Centre-North.[25] Current Calgary-Foothills MLA Len Webber and recent aldermanic candidate Sean Chu were also rumored to be testing the waters. Ultimately, university administrator and Calgary—Nose Hill riding president Michelle Rempel was acclaimed as the Conservative candidate on December 17, 2010.[26]

Former Ontario Liberal MP Robert Nault and former mayor of Calgary Dave Bronconnier were rumored to be seeking the Liberal nomination. However, Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff appointed Stephen Randall – a University of Calgary professor and the former dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences – as the party's candidate on January 6, 2011.[27]

Heather MacIntosh was nominated to replace Dr. Eric Donovan as the Green Party candidate after winning a three way nomination contest on October 26, 2010.

By-election on superseded by federal election

resignation of Jim Prentice on November 14, 2010

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Michelle Rempel 28,443 56.45% -0.08%
New Democratic Paul Vargis 8,030 15.94% +0.62%
Liberal Stephen Randall 7,114 14.12% +2.35%
Green Heather MacIntosh 6,558 13.02% -2.09%
Marxist–Leninist Peggy Askin 209 0.41% +0.03%
Total valid votes 50,384 100.00%
Total rejected ballots
Turnout 50,384 60.1%

Haute-Gaspésie—La Mitis—Matane—Matapédia

A by-election was pending in the Quebec federal riding of Haute-Gaspésie—La Mitis—Matane—Matapédia, where Bloc Québécois MP Jean-Yves Roy resigned on October 22, 2010 as a result of chronic health problems.[28] The Prime Minister theoretically had until April 20, 2011 to drop the writ for a by-election in that riding.

By-election on superseded by general election

resignation of Jean-Yves Roy on October 22, 2010

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Bloc Québécois Jean-François Fortin 12,633 36.05 -1.48
Liberal Nancy Charest 8,964 25.58 -10.02
New Democratic Joanie Boulet 7,484 21.36 +16.67
Conservative Allen Cormier 5,253 14.99 -3.08
Green Louis Drainville 707 2.02 -1.55
Total valid votes 35,041 100.00
Total rejected ballots 393 1.11 +0.07
Turnout 35,434 59.81 +5.43
Eligible voters 59,242

Prince George—Peace River

A by-election was pending in the British Columbia federal riding of Jay Hill on October 25, 2010. Prime Minister Harper had until April 22, 2011 to call a by-election.[29]

Notably, in his resignation announcement Hill appeared to suggest that he expected the 41st federal election to be called before a by-election could take place in this riding. He was correct; the Harper government lost a confidence motion on March 25, 2011, triggering an election.[30]

Persons seeking the Conservative Party nomination were former

  1. ^ "Elections Canada". Retrieved 2012-06-13. 
  2. ^ "Bill Casey leaving politics for government job", Truro Daily News, April 27, 2009.
  3. ^ [1]
  4. ^ (French)
  5. ^ (French)
  6. ^ "Le Parti libéral du Canada (Québec) annonce la candidature de Marcel Catellier à l'élection partielle dans Montmagny - L'Islet - Kamouraska - Rivière-du-Loup". Retrieved 2012-06-13. 
  7. ^ (French)
  8. ^ Pundit's Guide
  9. ^ Green Party of Canada
  10. ^ "Bloc MP runs for municipal politics". CTV News, June 25, 2009.
  11. ^ "". 2009-11-09. Retrieved 2012-06-13. 
  12. ^ "Day 32: Daniel Paillé « Canadian By-Elections". 2009-10-09. Retrieved 2012-06-13. 
  13. ^ Le Devoir (French)
  14. ^ (French)
  15. ^ Campaign Website
  16. ^ Green Party of Canada
  17. ^ (French)
  18. ^ a b "Elections Canada". Retrieved 2012-06-13. 
  19. ^ "Harper calls 3 by-elections, including Grit stronghold Vaughan", Globe and Mail, October 24, 2010
  20. ^ "The Emerging Shape of the By-Election Calendar". Pundits' Guide, October 2010.
  21. ^ "Inky hopes to make a Mark as mayor again", Winnipeg Free Press, August 17, 2010
  22. ^ "Bevilacqua confirms Vaughan mayoral run", CBC News, September 3, 2010
  23. ^ Jim Prentice leaves politics for CIBC. The Globe and Mail, November 4, 2010.
  24. ^ "Jim Prentice to resign", Toronto Sun, November 4, 2010
  25. ^ "Mayoral hopefuls eye federal run". CTV News, November 5, 2010.
  26. ^ "New Tory candidate acclaimed in Prentice's old riding"The Calgary Herald, December 18, 2010.
  27. ^ "Liberals pick candidate to fight for Prentice's old seat"The Calgary Herald, January 7, 2011.
  28. ^ "Jean-Yves Roy quitte la politique", Radio-Canada, October 22, 2010
  29. ^ a b "Kinsley seeks Conservative nod in Prince George-Peace River", Prince George Free News, October 22, 2010
  30. ^ Gloria Galloway (December 17, 2011). "Harper government falls in historic Commons showdown". Toronto: The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 2012-06-13. 
  31. ^ "Five candidates now in the running for Conservative nomination"., October 8, 2010.
  32. ^ Williams, Arthur. "Zimmer wins Conservative nomination".The Prince George Citizen, March 12, 2011.
  33. ^ "Green Party announces federal candidate for riding"., November 12, 2010.
  34. ^ "Lois Boone Nabs Candidacy for NDP Prince George-Peace River MP By-election"., November 27, 2010.
  35. ^ "Local lawyer to represent Liberal Party". Prince George Citizen. 2011-03-29. Retrieved 2012-06-13. 


See also

By-election on superseded by general election

resignation of Jay Hill on October 25, 2010

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Bob Zimmer 23,946 62.12 -1.47
New Democratic Lois Boone 9,876 25.62 +8.04
Green Hilary Crowley 2,301 5.97 -4.44
Liberal Ben Levine 2,008 5.21 -3.20
Pirate Jeremy Cote 415 1.08
Total valid votes 38,546 100.00
Total rejected ballots

On March 28, 2011, lawyer Ben Levine was nominated as the Liberal candidate.[35]

Hilary Crowley was announced as the Green Party candidate on November 12, 2010.[33] Former Deputy Premier and Prince George area MLA, Lois Boone as acclaimed as the NDP candidate on November 27, 2010.[34]


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