Election night by the numbers

As you watch the votes pour in Monday night, here are some important numbers to keep in mind.

Why are these so important? Let’s break it down.

The big change this election is the number of seats. We’re going from a House of Commons of 308 seats to 338. Half of those new seats went to Ontario, the rest were divided between BC, Quebec and Alberta. Probably not coincidentally, that’s where we may see some of the biggest shifts this election.

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Going into the election, the Conservatives had a majority government of 170 seats out of 308.

The latest seat projections from the Laurier Institute for the Study of Public Opinion and Policy show that no party is very likely to come away with a majority, something even Conservative spokesperson Kory Teneycke has admitted.

READ MORE: Liberals continue to surge, widen lead in seat projections

These projections show the Liberals slightly in the lead, with 144 seats – still a long way from the 170 now needed for a majority.

A minority government, whoever leads it, will make for interesting times on Parliament Hill after the election.

Toronto area

The leaders have spent a lot of time in the Greater Toronto Area this election. And with good reason: There are 56 seats to be had in the region, and it’s increasingly looking like they’re up for grabs.

In the last federal election, 19 key victories in the GTA helped propel the Conservatives to a majority. But now, seat projections suggest that many of these Toronto-area Conservatives are in trouble, and most of those seats will likely go to Liberals.


Four years ago, a 59-seat orange wave in Quebec pushed the NDP into official opposition status. Unfortunately for them, polls indicate the party’s support has been slipping in the province, to the benefit of Liberals and Conservatives, according to seat projections. The Bloc Quebecois isn’t currently projected to make many gains. The NDP is still in the lead with a projected 40 seats in Quebec, though, which would still contribute to a historically strong showing for the party.

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Western Canada

Alberta is Conservative country. But there are signs the party’s hold might be slipping, at least in the two biggest cities. Right now, there are only two non-Conservative seats in the province – one of them held by Independent Brent Rathgeber, a former Conservative who left the party in 2013, the other by the NDP’s Linda Duncan. Projections suggest the NDP may get an extra seat in Edmonton and the Liberals a combined three extra seats in Calgary and Edmonton.

BC is looking like a three-way race, with all three major parties (plus the Greens) projected to win seats. The Liberals and the NDP are projected to win 14, the Conservatives 13 and Green leader Elizabeth May is projected to win back her own seat.

Finally, one last number: 78 – the number of days in this campaign. However it turns out, on Monday, it’ll be over.


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