By 5 p.m. Pacific Time, the federal election was over. At least it felt that way, and the polls in B.C. were still open for two more hours.
During that time, voters – with the blackout lifted this time around – watched as a red tide swept from the Atlantic provinces east across Canada.
Justin Trudeau and the Liberal Party won a majority government Monday, and the outcome was never really in doubt.
Even Dan Ruimy, the Liberal candidate, won in Pitt Meadows-Maple Ridge, to the surprise of his rivals, Conservative candidate Mike Murray and Bob D’Eith of the NDP.
It was a close race locally, with just a 1,200 votes separating Ruimy from his nearest rival, and another thousand over that of the third-place finisher.
Murray allowed that displaying the results from back east while B.C. polls remained open may have influenced some voters.
How else to explain the Liberal win here, a party that didn’t even garner 3,000 votes the previous election and prior to that finished behind the Greens?
This election also had the highest voter turnout – 68.5 per cent – since 1993, when Jean Chretien swept to power.
The swell in numbers was partly due to the 3.6 million Canadians who cast ballots during the four-day advance polling period on the Thanksgiving long weekend — an increase of 71 per cent over the 2011 election.
Higher voter participation is good, as is change, which clearly Canadians wanted.
There is no evidence to suggest a lack of a blackout – first made a Canadian law in 1938 – affected the election results.
Trudeau, Canada’s 23rd prime minister and the first child of a former leader elected to the same post in our country’s history, will next select a cabinet.
We are unsure what role Ruimy, a local business owner, will play in Ottawa.
By his own admission in August, he is new to politics. On election night, he was content just to have the party win, let alone celebrate his own victory.
Their was much jubilation at the Liberal office.
Now the learning begins for Ruimy.
He said when first selected as the Liberal candidate that he would not work for Ottawa, but for the constituents of Pitt Meadows and Maple Ridge.
We will hold him to that.