Election Day in Halifax Brings Delays, Long Lines and Votes Long After 8:30 PM | News | Halifax, Nova Scotia


IIt has been 36 days since Prime Minister Justin Trudeau called an early election, which proved successful as he retained power late Monday night. With nearly a million mail-in ballots that won’t be counted until Tuesday, it is not yet clear whether Trudeau established a minority or majority government.

Elections Canada warned that COVID clean-up and security measures would likely contribute to delays in the polls. This was evident at 8:45 p.m. on Monday night at the polling station at All Saints Cathedral Church on Cathedral Lane, where a line of 15 or more voters was stretching outside the church in the city center of Halifax. A volunteer told voters online that “Elections Canada underestimated the number of voters, especially student voters,” but anyone in line before 8:30 p.m. could vote after the hour limit of the ballot. Elections Canada has been contacted for comment, and this story will be updated with any response.

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At 8:45 p.m., 15 minutes after the polls closed, the queue at the Cathedral Lane polling station extended onto the sidewalk.

The cathedral polling station remained occupied from the opening of polling stations at 8:30 a.m. until they closed. At around 2 p.m., Tracy Stewart and Jarret Stewart lined up but ultimately couldn’t vote. “Actually, we couldn’t register to vote, they said the queue was too long. So we’re going to go there and come back later, ”said Jarret.

At the Conservatory polling station on Chebucto Road, Kallie White said the situation around 5 p.m. was “incredibly disorganized” and she saw a number of voters leave the office after learning the office was running out of forms. voter registration.

“So many people were being pushed though… no one was socially distanced. I was in the line for over an hour… I was in the front and then the line finally stopped moving. After a while I asked why, and one of the staff at the registration table said they ran out of registration forms and didn’t know when they would have them. more. said Blanc.

Click to enlarge Voters and volunteers at the Halifax Korean Church polling station on Oxford Street.  - THE SIDE

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Voters and volunteers at the Halifax Korean Church polling station on Oxford Street.

“Some people then left because of the wait. After another 20 minutes they had more forms and I was finally signed up. White saidsuccessfully voted at 6:50 p.m., just under two hours after arriving.

Dalhousie University student Kyle Bell has found the voting process particularly difficult without on-campus voting options this year.

Click to enlarge Dalhousie University student Kyle Bell said voting this year was a "nightmare" and he missed the vote on campus.  - THE SIDE

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Dalhousie University student Kyle Bell said voting this year was a “nightmare” and he missed the vote on campus.

“Honestly, it’s been a nightmare trying to vote,” Bell said. “I went to the Dal Student Union building and we tried to find out where to vote, but they couldn’t help me. They gave me a number to call, and apparently I’m supposed to go here. But they made it very difficult to vote this year.

Nikki Olguin, another old student of Dal. She said that “it feels like they made it very difficult, or more difficult for people than they should be” to vote in this federal election. Olguin and Bell said they found it easier in the August 17 provincial election. “But during a pandemic, it’s probably not the best time for an election,” Bell said.

Not all Halifax voters were disheartened by this year’s electoral process. Peter Bigelow, who voted at the Halifax Korean Church polling station on Oxford Street, said it didn’t look like the pandemic had had much of an impact. “I think most people seem comfortable going out here and voting,” he said.

Also in the church poll, Cat MacDonald said the pandemic enabled her to find information about the candidates and party pledges. “I’ve had more time to think about who I want to vote for, more time to research the different candidates and make an informed decision on the platforms,” she said.

“I feel more confident in my decision as to who I will vote for. ”

Results

In the riding of Halifax, the race is neck and neck between incumbent Liberal Andy Fillmore and former NDP MP Lisa Roberts. In the early hours of September 21, no winner was called. Cameron Ells rsn under the Conservative banner. Former interim Greens leader Jo-Ann Roberts represented his party in the downtown constituency. B. Alexander Hebert represented the People’s Party of Canada and Katie Campbell ran for the Communist Party.

Halifax West — Former Speaker of Parliament Geoff Regan retiring after 24 years as MP for Halifax West, Lena Metlege Diab has won under the Liberal banner. The former provincial immigration minister announced in June that she would run for federal headquarters. Metlege Diab, a lawyer, was first elected to the Nova Scotia legislature in 2013. Jonathan Roberts of the NDP received the second highest number of votes in the riding of Halifax West. He and Metlege Diab faced Tory Eleanor Humphries, and Richard Zurawski of the Green Party, a former city councilor, and Julie Scott ran for the PPC. This riding covers the western end of Halifax and Bedford, Upper Hammonds Plains, Tantallon and Terence Bay.

Dartmouth-Cole Harbor — Liberal Darren Fisher has been re-elected in Dartmouth area ridings. The former Halifax city councilor has been an MP since 2015. He ran against small business owner Kevin Payne representing the NDP, who won the second highest number of votes. Activist Rana Zaman represented the Green Party and Michelle Lindsay is running under the banner of the People’s Party of Canada.

The Liberals swept the ridings of Halifax, but the Tories took action in Nova Scotia with Rick Perkins toppling outgoing Liberal Fisheries Minister Bernadette Jordan in South Shore-St. Margarets and outgoing Liberal Lenore Zann lost to Tory Stephen Ellis in Cumberland-Colchester.

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