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What the parties have said about working with a Liberal minority government

Global News is projecting a Liberal minority government, though all of the votes have yet to be counted across the country.

As of 12 a.m. ET, the Liberals are leading or elected in 156 ridings. That’s 14 seats shy of the 170 MPs needed to form a majority in Canada’s 338-seat House of Commons.

READ MORE: Live federal election results

Without holding the majority of the seats, the party needs the support of other MPs in order to pass legislation.

A minority government could receive support from its opponents on an ad-hoc basis or even join them in a formal coalition arrangement. If that doesn’t happen, Canadians could face another election sooner than later.

An extremely tight race between the Liberals and the Conservatives prompted speculation about a possible minority government — and how the other federal parties might factor into that arrangement.

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READ MORE: Should party with most seats get first crack at forming government? Here’s how minorities work

Each of the party leaders was asked about minority scenarios at various points leading up to the vote. Here’s some of what they had to say on the campaign trail.

Green Party

We will bring down a possible minority government over climate emergency: May
We will bring down a possible minority government over climate emergency: May

Green Party Leader Elizabeth May has been clear that Greens would not prop up any government that supports pipelines.

The Liberals bought the controversial Trans Mountain pipeline in 2018, but vowed that proceeds from the project would go toward green initiatives.

May later said that talk of a coalition during the campaign was “meaningless.”

But she has expressed a willingness for cross-party cooperation. One of the Green platform planks was setting up a cabinet with representatives from each party to collaborate on tackling climate change.

Federal Election 2019: Green Party Elizabeth May reacts to minority Liberal government
Federal Election 2019: Green Party Elizabeth May reacts to minority Liberal government

On election night, she said what really matters now is how many seats the Liberals get.

“None of the other parties have put forward a credible climate plan,” she said from her campaign headquarters.

READ MORE: Watch live coverage of the 2019 federal election

NDP

Federal Election 2019: Singh says minority governments are ‘a good thing’
Federal Election 2019: Singh says minority governments are ‘a good thing’

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh tried to counter the Liberal narrative that voting NDP would split the progressive vote and let the Tories cruise to victory by speaking out in favour of an NDP-Liberal coalition.

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Singh has told voters not to “settle for less” by choosing the Liberals.

READ MORE: Could Singh use Trans Mountain as bargaining chip if NDP plays kingmaker? He’s not ruling it out

He outlined six policy areas that would allow the party to support a possible Trudeau government — climate change, pharmacare, interest-free student loans, cellphone bills, affordable housing and as well taxing the “ultra-rich.”

Federal Election 2019: NDP Jenny Kwan reacts to Liberal minority
Federal Election 2019: NDP Jenny Kwan reacts to Liberal minority

Singh later appeared to backtrack somewhat on his offer, saying his “focus is not on a coalition.”

One issue that could possibly threaten an alliance between the NDP and the Liberals is the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion. Singh is opposed to the controversial project, which would expand the capacity of the pipeline from Alberta’s oilsands to Burnaby, B.C., the area where Singh is seeking re-election.

READ MORE: 4 in 10 voters say a minority government is best but most prefer a majority: Ipsos poll

Asked during the campaign whether he would make cancellation a condition for his party to support a possible Liberal minority, Singh said he is fundamentally opposed to the project, but did not explicitly commit to toppling the Liberals if the project continues.

“Yeah, so this is something I’ve been very clear on. I’m fully opposed to Trans Mountain. I’ve been opposed to it, I will continue to be opposed to it,” Singh said.

Liberal Party

Federal Election 2019: Trudeau not focused on possibility of coalition government
Federal Election 2019: Trudeau not focused on possibility of coalition government

Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau has not addressed whether he would be open to the possibility of an NDP coalition, saying he is focused on getting Liberals elected.

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Federal Election 2019: Liberal HQ celebrates projected Justin Trudeau minority government
Federal Election 2019: Liberal HQ celebrates projected Justin Trudeau minority government

Asked which party he preferred to work with in a minority scenario, Trudeau said his preference is to have a “strong, clear mandate” that would allow the Liberals to stand up to Conservative premiers on issues such as climate change and cuts to services.

Federal Election 2019: Trudeau says he wants ‘strong clear mandate’ to stand up to Conservative premiers over cuts, climate change
Federal Election 2019: Trudeau says he wants ‘strong clear mandate’ to stand up to Conservative premiers over cuts, climate change

Conservative Party

Scheer makes more claims about what a Liberal-NDP coalition could do
Scheer makes more claims about what a Liberal-NDP coalition could do

Trudeau’s reluctance to discuss the idea didn’t stop Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer from raising the spectre of a Liberal-NDP coalition in the event of a Tory minority.

Even if an incumbent government loses, traditionally, it has the ability to seek the confidence of the House by attempting to form a coalition, or by getting their support case-by-case.

READ MORE: Coalition government — what is it and where does each party stand

“Trudeau will form a coalition with the NDP to cling to power if he loses the election,” Scheer tweeted. “That will mean bigger deficits, higher taxes, and less money in your pocket. It is the costly coalition you cannot afford.”

Bloc Québécois

The Bloc Québécois was leading or elected in 32 of Quebec’s 78 seats as of 11:30 ET on Monday.

The party’s leader Yves-François Blanchet has previously said he won’t formally prop up any minority government.

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“If something is proposed in Parliament which is good for Quebec, we will vote in favour of it. If something is proposed which is not good for Quebec, we will go against it,” Blanchet told reporters in French after one of the debates.

— With files from Hannah Jackson, Beatrice Britneff and Amanda Connolly, Global News