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Thirty-sixth General Election 1997: Official Voting Results: Synopsis


OVERVIEW

REGISTERED POLITICAL PARTIES AND CANDIDATES

Registered political parties

Pursuant to the Canada Elections Act, every political party is required to register with the Chief Electoral Officer of Canada to be entitled to reimbursement of certain election expenses and to the allocation of paid and free broadcasting time. Only candidates representing registered parties may have their party's name on the ballot.

To register, a political party must officially nominate a candidate in at least 50 electoral districts in a general election. It must also have submitted its registration application in proper form at least 60 days before the election was called. A previously registered political party automatically loses its status if it does not officially nominate a candidate in at least 50 electoral districts in a general election. Candidates can be nominated up to 2:00 p.m. on the 21st day before polling day. In the past, parties had until the 28th day before polling day to officially nominate candidates.

Before the 36th general election was called, 14 parties were registered and the Chief Electoral Officer had received registration applications from three more. At 2:00 p.m. on May 12, 1997, official nomination day, 10 parties met the statutory registration requirements. Of the 14 parties previously registered, nine had their registration confirmed and five lost their registration. Of the three parties whose application for registration had been approved, one was confirmed and two were not.

Table A lists the political parties registered for the 36th general election and indicates whether they were registered previously. The table also lists those that had to be deleted from the register or that could not be registered because they failed to nominate a candidate in at least 50 electoral districts.



TABLE A - Registration status of political parties – 36th general election 1997
Parties retaining their status as registered parties (nine parties)
Bloc Québécois
Reform Party of Canada
The Green Party of Canada
New Democratic Party
Natural Law Party of Canada
Christian Heritage Party of Canada
Liberal Party of Canada
Marxist-Leninist Party of Canada
Progressive Conservative Party of Canada
Party acquiring registered party status (one party)
Canadian Action Party
Parties whose application for registration was not confirmed because they did not nominate a candidate in at least 50 electoral districts (two parties)
Rainbow Coalition Party of Canada
Communist Party of Canada
Parties that lost their status as registered parties pursuant to subsection 28(2) of the Canada Elections Act because they did not nominate a candidate in at least 50 electoral districts or for some other reason (five parties)
Canada Party
Abolitionist Party of Canada
Libertarian Party of Canada
National Party of Canada
Party for the Commonwealth of Canada
Number of parties registered on June 2, 1997: 10

The number of registered political parties peaked in the 1993 general election. The number had increased considerably after new provisions on the registration of political parties had come into force during the 1972 election (see Figure B).



FIGURE B
Number of registered political parties in general elections, from 1972 to 1997

Figure B

A total of 21 parties were registered between 1972 and 1997. Of those, only the Liberal Party of Canada, the New Democratic Party and the Progressive Conservative Party of Canada were registered for all the elections held during that period.

Candidates

Under the Canada Elections Act, any person who wishes to contest a seat at a federal election must submit a nomination paper to the returning officer of the electoral district where he or she intends to run. That nomination paper may be filed at any time between the date on which the proclamation of the election is published locally and 2:00 p.m. on nomination day, in this case May 12, 1997. Candidates had until 5:00 p.m. on that day to submit in person a written declaration of withdrawal to the returning officer. There were no withdrawals.

In the end, there were 1,672 candidates. As Figure C shows, this was the second-highest number of candidates to run in a general election since 1972. There were at least three candidates in every electoral district, and 78 electoral districts had seven or more candidates (see Figure D).



FIGURE C
Number of electoral districts and number of candidates
in general elections, since 1972

Figure C


FIGURE D
Number of electoral districts, by number
of candidates – 36th general election 1997

Figure D

Candidates must indicate their affiliation with a political party on their nomination paper and must attach a letter of endorsement signed by the leader of the party or an authorized representative. Candidates not sponsored by a registered political party are considered to be "independent", unless they make a written request to the returning officer of their electoral district that "no affiliation" appear on the ballot. A candidate sponsored by a party is also considered to have "no affiliation" if the party failed to meet the statutory registration requirements.

Of the 1 672 candidates in the 36th general election, 1,596 or 95.5% ran under the banner of a political party (see Table B). The Liberal Party of Canada, the Progressive Conservative Party of Canada and the New Democratic Party were the only ones to nominate a candidate in each of the 301 electoral districts.

The proportion of women among the candidates was 24.4% overall, compared with 22.1% in the 1993 general election. The New Democratic Party had the highest proportion of female candidates: 35.5%.


TABLE B - Distribution of official candidates, by political affiliation and sex – 36th general election 1997
Province or territory Action B.Q. C.H.P. G.P. Ind. Lib. M.-L.
M F M F M F M F M F M F M F
  Nfld.
0
0
0
0
0
0
1
0
0
0
6
1
0
0
  P.E.I.
0
0
0
0
1
0
0
0
0
0
4
0
0
0
  N.S.
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
2
0
8
3
2
0
  N.B.
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
7
3
0
0
  Que.
1
0
59
16
4
0
2
1
5
2
50
25
9
5
  Ont.
29
9
0
0
21
3
28
8
14*
1
77
26
18
12
  Man.
1
0
0
0
5
0
0
0
6
1
10
4
4
4
  Sask.
5
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
1
0
12
2
0
0
  Alta.
2
0
0
0
3
1
6
3
3
0
18
8
0
2
  B.C.
7
4
0
0
12
2
15
15
6
1
25
9
4
5
  N.W.T.
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
1
0
0
2
0
0
  Y.T.
0
0
0
0
1
0
0
0
1
0
0
1
0
0
Total
45  
13  
59  
16  
47  
6
52  
27  
39*   
5
217    
84  
37  
28  


TABLE B (cont') - Distribution of official candidates, by political affiliation and sex – 36th general election 1997
Province or territory
N.D.P. NIL
N.L.P.
P.C. Ref. Total
M
F
M
F
M
F
M
F
M
F
M
F
Nfld.
5
2
1
0
2
0
7
0
4
0
26
3
P.E.I.
3
1
0
0
0
1
4
0
2
0
14
2
N.S.
7
4
1
0
7
2
10  
1
7
2
44
12  
N.B.
7
3
0
0
4
2
7
3
8
0
33
11  
Que.
41  
34  
2
1
19  
6
62  
13  
10  
1
264  
104    
Ont.
67  
36  
11*  
1
31  
15  
78  
25  
91  
11  
465  
147    
Man.
6
8
1
0
2
1
11  
3
13  
1
59
22  
Sask.
14  
0
0
0
4
0
14  
0
13  
1
63
3
Alta.
17  
9
0
2
12  
3
20  
6
23  
3
104  
37  
B.C.
26  
8
11  
1
17  
8
30  
4
30  
4
183  
61  
N.W.T.
1
1
0
0
0
0
1
1
2
0
  5
4
Y.T.
0
1
0
0
0
0
1
0
1
0
  4
2
Total
194    
107    
27*   
5
98  
38  
245    
56  
204    
23  
1 264    
408    

* Revised data, March 2000




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