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By-election March 19, 2012 – Official Voting Results

March 19, 2012, by-election


This first section of the Chief Electoral Officer's report on the federal by-election held on March 19, 2012, describes the circumstances leading to the calling of the by-election, the electoral district involved and the nomination of candidates. It also presents the number of registered electors, the polling stations, the voter turnout rate and the candidate elected.

The second section provides more information on the official voting results and summary data, in table format. The concluding section presents the poll-by-poll results for the electoral district.

Further information on the March 2012 by-election will appear in a report to be published in March 2013, covering the administration of all by-elections held in 2012. That report will be available at

Calling the by-election

On August 22, 2011, the Honourable Jack Layton, the New Democratic Party Member of Parliament for Toronto–Danforth, passed away, leaving his seat in the House of Commons vacant. Mr. Layton was a member of Parliament for over 7 years. A writ ordering a by-election in Toronto–Danforth was accordingly issued on February 6, 2012.

The seat distribution in the House of Commons on February 6 was: Conservative Party of Canada – 165 seats; New Democratic Party – 101 seats; Liberal Party of Canada – 35  seats; Bloc Québécois – 4 seats; Green Party of Canada – 1 seat; Independent – 1 seat; and vacant – 1 seat.

Electoral district

The boundaries of the electoral district of Toronto–Danforth were the same as those in effect during the 2011 federal general election. They coincide with the boundaries defined in the 2003 Representation Order, issued in accordance with the Electoral Boundaries Readjustment Act.

The returning officer for Toronto–Danforth during the by-election was Mrs. Jennifer Janes, who is an Office Clerk residing in Toronto.

Population based on the 2006 Census: 103,655

Map - Toronto–Danforth

Nomination of candidates

The candidates in the by-election had until 2:00 p.m. on February 27, 2012, to file their nomination papers in accordance with the date published in the Notice of Election by the returning officer.

In Toronto–Danforth, eight registered parties nominated candidates: the Canadian Action Party, the Conservative Party of Canada, the Green Party of Canada, the Liberal Party of Canada, the Libertarian Party of Canada, the New Democratic Party, the Progressive Canadian Party and the United Party of Canada. There were three independent candidates. None of the candidates withdrew during the period in which this was permitted.

Registered electors

For the March 2012 by-election, there were 74,612 names on the preliminary lists of electors. The lists were produced from information in the National Register of Electors. During the revision period, which extended from February 15 until March 13, 1,574 electors were registered in Toronto–Danforth. These figures include electors who were already on the lists but had changed addresses.

The names recorded on the final lists of electors (that is, the lists prepared after election day) numbered 75,111 in Toronto–Danforth. These lists included the names of the 756 electors who registered on election day, some of whom had changed addresses.

Polling stations

On election day, the ordinary polling stations were open from 8:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. (Eastern Time) in Toronto–Danforth. The returning officer set up 184 ordinary polling stations, all of which were stationary.

In addition, the Act provides for the establishment of mobile polling stations to collect the votes of seniors and persons with disabilities who live in long-term care facilities. These polling stations, which serve polling divisions with at least two institutions, travel from institution to institution and remain open at each place only as long as necessary to enable the electors present to vote. In the March 2012 by-election, no mobile polling stations were established.

The returning officer is required to set up advance polling stations to collect the votes of electors who cannot or do not wish to go to their ordinary polling stations on election day. The electoral district had 10 advance polling stations. All the advance polling stations were open from noon to 8:00 p.m. (local time) on March 9, 10 and 12.

Voter turnout

A total of 32,469 electors cast a ballot in the by-election in Toronto–Danforth, a participation rate of 43.2%. Of these electors, 27,077 (or 83.4%) voted on election day at their ordinary polling stations.

Table 1
Number of ballots cast, by voting method

Voting method Toronto–Danforth
No. %
Ordinary polling stations 27,077 83.4
Advance polling stations 4,865 15.0
Special Voting Rules – Group 1* 29 0.1
Special Voting Rules – Group 2** 498 1.5
Total 32,469 100

*Includes Canadian citizens temporarily residing outside Canada, members of the Canadian Forces (except members of the Canadian Forces who voted at the polling station established for the polling division of their place of ordinary residence) and incarcerated electors.

**Includes Canadian citizens residing in Canada who voted by special ballot in or outside the electoral district.

Candidate elected

The New Democratic Party candidate, Craig Scott, was declared elected in Toronto–Danforth once the validation of results was completed.

Following this by-election, the distribution of seats in the House of Commons was:

Conservative Party of Canada 165
New Democratic Party102
Liberal Party of Canada35
Bloc Québécois4
Green Party of Canada1
Total 308