February 23rd, 2015 | No Comments »
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With an election looming on the horizon, 21 Members of Parliament have still not been confirmed as candidates for the upcoming federal election, while 44 others are bowing out, and 2 Commons seats sit vacant.
The "As yet Unrenominated Incumbents" list includes MPs from the Conservatives, Liberals, Bloc and one Independent MP who has yet to confirm his intention, but two-thirds of them are from the NDP.
That party has recently stepped up its pace of nominations, confirming 38 candidates since the new year, with another 22 meetings scheduled (including 5 of the still unnominated NDP MPs). The Liberals, who moved ahead of the other parties in selected candidates early in the new year, have nominated 23 candidates since the start of the year, with another 10 meetings scheduled, while the Conservatives have selected 11 candidates (that I can track so far) in that period, with 1 further scheduled meeting on the books that I'm aware of.
Lopping off the first week of January when no-one selected any candidates, that's six weeks: with the NDP logging 6 candidates per week, the Liberals 4 candidates weekly, and the Conservatives 2. The Green Party also confirmed at least 21 candidates so far in 2015.
Meanwhile, there are now 44 sitting MPs who intend to step back when the writ is issued; with the Conservative Party accounting for 27 so far (including a number who had already been nominated, such as the two who retired since our last update, John Baird and Randy Kamp), and the NDP logging its 9th with the announcement of Alexandrine Latendresse in Louis-Saint-Laurent, joining 5 current Liberal MPs (including one formerly elected as a New Democrat), 1 current Bloc Québécois MP (elected under the NDP banner), and 2 Independents MP (Sana Hassainia, who was also elected with the NDP, and André Bellavance who was elected with the Bloc).
Retiring Incumbents and Open Seats, 1993 GE – 42nd GE
(updated to February 22, 2015, 2015)
|General Election||Seats||Retiring Incumbents||New Seats||Open Seats|
|42nd GE||338||44 + 2 vacant||30||74 (+2)|
That number compares to the 58 incumbents who retired in 2004, and the recent high of 72 retiring incumbents in 1993.
Retiring (and Resigned) Incumbents, 41st Parliament, by Year First Elected
(updated to February 22, 2015)
|Total = 44||27||9||5||1||2 + 2 vacant|
Now, there are two ways to leave politics before an election: announcing you won't be running again, and losing your nomination. Obviously Conservative MP Rob Anders failed in two attempts to secure a Conservative nomination, and now Eve Adams – having been unable to win a Conservative nomination in Oakville North-Burlington, ON, and being informed by her then-party that they would not approve her to contest another riding – will try to win the Liberal nomination in the north Toronto riding of Eglinton-Lawrence, ON.
More recently among the orange team, there are now at least 5 several MPs contemplating the same fate. As we reported a few weeks ago, three NDP MPs were either being challenged or were expecting challenges – with a fourth surfacing later that day, and then last week La Presse reported three of the same names, along with a new one.
Thirty of 31 non-retiring Liberal MPs have now been renominated, with only Conservative-turned-Liberal MP Eve Adams outstanding.
Four Conservative MPs have not yet been renominated:
- Cabinet ministers: Julian Fantino (who also insists he'll run again), and junior minister Lynne Yelich
- Finance Committee Chair James Rajotte of Edmonton (who reiterated to Don Martin that he's planning to run again), and Leon Benoit also of Alberta (who doesn't appear to have a seat to run in)
Fourteen NDP MPs have not yet been renominated (though 5 of them have meetings scheduled):
- Long-timers: Jack Harris (who says he is running again), Carol Hughes (mtg Mar 7), John Rafferty, Dennis Bevington, and leader Tom Mulcair
- First-timers: Isabelle Morin (mtg Feb 27), Dan Harris (mtg Mar 1), Réjean Genest, Pierre Jacob, and François Lapointe
- Marc-André Morin in Laurentides-Labelle, QC (mtg Mar 1) and Francine Raynault in Joliette, QC (mtg Mar 7) will learn their fates within the next two weeks. Morin is facing local doctor, Simon-Paul Landry, while Raynault is being challenged by a local councillor and former aide to her, Danielle Landreville.
- Jeanne-Le Ber, QC MP Tyrone Benskin is being challenged by two other candidates for the NDP nomination in the new riding of Ville-Marie–Le Sud-Ouest–Île-des-Sœurs, QC, lawyer Allison Turner and digital policy analyst Vincent Héritier. They have yet to settle on a meeting date.
- José Nunez-Melo who currently represents the riding of Laval, QC has had an opponent in the field in his chosen riding of Vimy, QC since December, the co-chair of the party's Women's Commission, Jacinthe Gagnon. No meeting date has been set there either.
- La Presse reported that Shefford MP Réjean Genest is one of the MPs who will be challenged for his nomination, but I haven't seen who the challenger could be yet. Pierre Jacob announced a health leave last October, but hasn't made any further announcement that I'm aware of. François Lapointe certainly sounds like he is running again, and I haven't seen any evidence of a challenge to his nomination.
Of the others:
- Louis Plamandon of the BQ says he's running again, but hasn't been renominated yet.
- Massimo Pacetti remains the question mark. Jean Lapierre told CTV Power Play the other week that the Liberals would not likely sanction his running again under their banner, and were thinking of perhaps former Martin-era cabinet minister Liza Frulla for his seat of Saint-Léonard—Saint-Michel, QC instead. The NDP actually has a <spit-take> contested nomination in that safest of all Liberal seats in north Montreal tonight.
- As for Manon Perreault, who is facing legal proceedings after being charged with allegedly falsely accusing a former staffmember of theft, she has told her local paper that she intends to run again, whether it's with the NDP or not. To date, no New Democrat has stepped forward to run for the nominaiton in her riding of Montcalm, though the Bloc Québécois just concluded a nomination contest there the other week.
Completing their slates in time for any constantly-rumoured but constantly-denied early election continues to be a challenge for the major parties. Ranking by the number of non-incumbent seats to fill (the harder job), they have the following numbers of non-incumbent candidates to recruit and nominate, in order to have a full slate. Assume we have roughly 30 weeks left before nomination day in the campaign. That leaves:
- NDP – 181 non-incumbents still to nominate (would need to nominate 6 per week from now until then)
- Conservatives – 131 non-incumbents still to nominate (would need just over 4 per week)
- Liberals – 127 non-incumbents still to nominate (would need around 4 per week)
- Greens – 287 non-incumbents still to nominate (will need just under 10 nominations per week to be ready for October)
Party Nominations by Province, 42nd General Election
(updated to February 22, 2015) (Scroll right to view full table)