October 18, 2015 11:38 am
Updated: October 18, 2015 3:32 pm

How the pot debate played out on Twitter during the federal election

The leaders' stances on marijuana were hot topics on Twitter during the #elxn42party

THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Jeff Chiu
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Marijuana proved to be a recurring fixation on Twitter throughout the lengthy federal election campaign.

Of the tens of thousands of tweets that referenced the election and/or the leaders as well as marijuana, most came from Ontario. British Columbia was the province next most likely to discuss the topic, according to data made available via a Global News partnership with Twitter Canada. In the last month, men were more likely to tweet about the topic than women, according to the data.

MORE: Memorable moments from the campaign trail

The most common terms tweeted when discussing marijuana in the last month included various references to legalizing the substance.

The most common terms tweeted by Canadians when discussing marijuana during the federal election campaign.


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Suggestions by Conservative party candidates that the Liberal Party of Canada supports community brothels and making pot available to children were also part of the Twitter conversation in recent weeks.

Related: Street-corner brothels and pot in the convenience store? We check out the claims

Another hot topic of conversation was Conservative leader Stephen Harper’s statement earlier this month that marijuana was ‘infinitely worse’ than tobacco.

More recently, questions have dogged the Conservative campaign about its association to Rob and Doug Ford – Rob Ford became an international sensation during his time as mayor after admitting to using crack cocaine and suggesting it happened during a ‘drunken stupor.’

The association was a hot topic on Twitter, especially after hundreds of Ford Nation supporters gathered in a Toronto conference centre on Saturday for a Conservative rally.

Pot wasn’t the only topic that occupied the thoughts of Twitter users during the campaign, according to Twitter Canada.

Millions of tweets have been shared regarding the election campaign, which is the longest in modern history. The following chart shows the pattern of tweets using #elxn42 over a month in which four federal leaders debates were held across the country.

Visualization are based on Twitter data and should not be considered scientifically accurate. Data has been made available via a partnership with Twitter Canada.

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