Chretien’s Liberal Party winning election

Associated Press

OTTAWA — Prime Minister Jean Chretien’s gamble for a place in Canadian history paid off Monday as his Liberal Party appeared to have won a third straight majority in nationwide elections, according to Canadian news organizations.

The Liberals won or had solid leads in more than 160 of the races for the 301 seats in the House of Commons, more than enough seats to guarantee them a majority, according to projections by the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. and the news agency Canadian Press.

The news organizations said they based their projections on official results coming across the country of 30 million people.

The results were clearest in the more heavily populated eastern Canada. Returns were still being counted in much of central and western Canada.

The result appeared to reflect that Canadians were enjoying an economic boom and looked forward to Liberal promises of $67 billion in tax cuts over five years. It also appeared that Canadians were willing to forgive Chretien, 66, for calling the election just 3 1/2 years into his second five-year term.

Monday’s apparent outcome was similar to the previous vote in 1997, when the Liberals won 155 of the 301 House of Commons seats. The majority victory means Chretien will be the longest-serving leader of the world’s industrial powers when President Clinton steps down in January.

It would also secure his legacy as one of only three Liberal leaders able to deliver three straight majority victories, something that even Pierre Trudeau was unable to do.

Trudeau’s death in September, and the subsequent emotional outpouring that boosted Liberal support, contributed to Chretien’s decision to take a chance with an early vote that could evoke a backlash from voters.

He also wanted to prevent the newly formed Canadian Alliance from gaining momentum in its efforts to consolidate conservative support, and needed to fend off moves within his own Liberal Party to make him step aside.

Failure to win a majority would likely have forced out Chretien as party leader in favor of heir apparent Paul Martin, the finance minister who has much greater personal popularity.

Regardless of the outcome, no change was expected in Canada-U.S. relations. The two countries form the world’s largest two-way trade partnership, with Canada’s economic growth in recent years dependent on a similar boom south of the border in the dominant U.S. economy.

Voters chose the representative from their district to the House of Commons. There was no direct voting for prime minister. The Liberals, guaranteed a majority, will form the next government with Chretien, the party leader, as prime minister.

Copyright ©2000 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Talk to us

More in Local News

FILE - A sign hangs at a Taco Bell on May 23, 2014, in Mount Lebanon, Pa. Declaring a mission to liberate "Taco Tuesday" for all, Taco Bell asked U.S. regulators Tuesday, May 16, 2023, to force Wyoming-based Taco John's to abandon its longstanding claim to the trademark. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar, File)
Hepatitis A confirmed in Taco Bell worker in Everett, Lake Stevens

The health department sent out a public alert for diners at two Taco Bells on May 22 or 23.

VOLLI’s Director of Food & Beverage Kevin Aiello outside of the business on Friday, May 19, 2023 in Marysville, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Coming soon to Marysville: indoor pickleball, games, drinks

“We’re very confident this will be not just a hit, but a smash hit,” says co-owner Allan Jones, who is in the fun industry.

Detectives: Unresponsive baby was exposed to fentanyl at Everett hotel

An 11-month-old boy lost consciousness Tuesday afternoon. Later, the infant and a twin sibling both tested positive for fentanyl.

Cassie Franklin (left) and Nick Harper (right)
Report: No wrongdoing in Everett mayor’s romance with deputy mayor

An attorney hired by the city found no misuse of public funds. Texts between the two last year, however, were not saved on their personal phones.

Firearm discovered by TSA officers at Paine Field Thursday morning, May 11, 2023, during routine X-ray screening at the security checkpoint. (Transportation Security Administration)
3 guns caught by TSA at Paine Field this month — all loaded

Simple travel advice: Unpack before you pack to make sure there’s not a gun in your carry-on.

Heavy traffic northbound on 1-5 in Everett, Washington on August 31, 2022.  (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
To beat the rush this Memorial Day weekend, go early or late

AAA projects busy airports, ferries and roads over the holiday weekend this year, though still below pre-pandemic counts.

Logo for news use featuring the municipality of Snohomish in Snohomish County, Washington. 220118
Troopers: DUI crash leaves 1 in critical condition in Maltby

A drunken driver, 34, was arrested after her pickup rear-ended another truck late Tuesday, injuring a Snohomish man, 28.

Housing Hope CEO Donna Moulton raises her hand in celebration of the groundbreaking of the Housing Hope Madrona Highlands on Tuesday, May 23, 2023 in Edmonds, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
$30M affordable housing project to start construction soon in Edmonds

Once built, dozens of families who are either homeless or in poverty will move in and receive social and work services.

A south-facing view of the proposed site for a new mental health facility on Thursday, Oct. 13, 2022, near 300th Street NW and 80th Avenue NW north of Stanwood, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
County Council OK’s Stanwood behavioral health center

After an unsuccessful appeal to block it, the Tulalip Tribes are now on the cusp of building the 32-bed center in farmland.

Most Read