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June 18th, 2015

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We can say with more certainty at the end of the final session of the 41st Parliament how many MPs will be retiring at the next election, but there may still be a few shoes left to drop.

[Welcome, cá độ bóng đá trên điện thoại National Newswatch readers!]

On the home page of this website, I now have a table titled "Current Party Standings and Nominations Metrics", which is pulled directly from the Pundits' Guide database, and currently shows the following:

  • 4 vacant seats: 2 Conservatives, and 2 Independents (1 elected a Conservative, and 1 as a New Democrat, fyi)
  • 54 retiring incumbents: 30 Conservatives, 14 NDPers, 5 Liberals, 1 Bloc Quebecois, and 4 Independents (1 each elected under the CPC, NDP, Lib & BQ banners)

The breakdown by party is as follows:

  • CPC: 34 = 30 current MPs retiring + 2 seats already vacant (John Baird in Ottawa West-Nepean, ON & Patrick Brown in Barrie, ON) + James Lunney now sitting as an Independent, but elected as a Conservative, is retiring + Dean Del Mastro last sitting as an Independent, but elected as a Conservative, has already resigned his Peterborough, ON seat and it's vacant
  • NDP: 14 = 12 current MPs retiring (including 3 who lost their nominations) + Sana Hassainia now sitting as an Independent, but elected as a New Democrat, is retiring + Glenn Thibeault last sitting as an Independent, but elected as a New Democrat, has already resigned his Sudbury, ON seat and it's vacant
  • Lib: 6 = 5 current MPs retiring (including 1 elected as a New Democrat) + Massimo Pacetti now sitting as an Independent, but elected as a Liberal, is retiring
  • BQ: 2 = 1 current MP retiring (Claude Patry, who was elected as a New Democrat) + André Bellavance now sitting as an Independent, but elected with the Bloc Quebecois, is retiring

If you've been following the storylines to date, a few outstanding questions were settled this week:

  • Conservative MP Leon Benoit did confirm his intention to retire, meaning he won't be contesting the Peace River, AB nomination. His Vegreville-Wainwright, AB riding got split up into many pieces, and he seemed to lose the game of nomination musical chairs.
  • The other two NDP MPs who lost their nominations – Tyrone Benskin and Francine Raynault – were among the retiring NDP MPs feted at their Tuesday night caucus party. Technically they could have run as independents or for another party, but that will not be the case, so we can include them in the retired count now.
  • Shefford, QC NDP MP Rejean Genest just announced his retirement at the Wednesday caucus meeting, for family reasons. A first nomination contestant announced in his riding the same day. His retirement became public first thing this morning.

Retiring (and Resigned) Incumbents, 41st Parliament, by Year First Elected
(updated to June 18, 2015)

Class of Cons NDP Lib BQ Ind
Total = 41 30 + 2 vacant 14 5 1 4 + 2 vacant
1993 Ablonczy
1996 (By)     Byrne    
1997 Anders
1999 (By)     Cotler    
2000 Rajotte Comartin     Lunney
2002 By         Pacetti
2003 By Schellenberger        
2004 Devolin
Crowder     Bellavance
2006 Allen
Brown (P)
    Del Mastro
2008 Boughen
  Valeriote   Thibeault
2011   Benskin
Morin (M-A)
Morin (M-C)
Patry Hassainia

The shoes still left to drop are below:

  • We learned today that Conservative MP Lynne Yelich is being challenged for her party's nomination in Saskatoon-Grasswood, SK by CTV Saskatoon sports director Kevin Waugh.
  • Julian Fantino has said several times he'll seek the Conservative nomination in Vaughan-Woodbridge, ON, but no movement has occurred on that nomination whatsoever, and he's refused further comment to his local paper.
  • Laval NDP MP José Nunez-Melo is being challenged by two women for the nomination in his renamed riding of Vimy, QC. The meeting hasn't been scheduled yet, and in fact no NDP nomination meetings have been scheduled in Québec seats for several weeks now.
  • Western Arctic NDP MP Dennis Bevington has not yet announced (nor apparently really decided) whether he will run again in the renamed riding of Northwest Territories, NT.
  • NDP Leader Tom Mulcair is not yet renominated in Outremont, QC, but that smells like a campaign event in waiting to me, and there's no hint he would be challenged.
  • Conservative-turned-Liberal MP Eve Adams is still fighting for the Eglinton-Lawrence, ON nomination against Marco Mendocino. There is no indication when that meeting will be called.
  • Louis Plamondon of the Bloc Québécois is not yet renominated, but continues to say he will run again in the new riding of Bécancour—Nicolet—Saurel, QC
  • Liberal-turned-Independent MP Scott Andrews has not yet ruled out running as an Independent in Avalon, NL.

Retiring Incumbents and Open Seats, 1993 GE – 42nd GE

General Election Seats Retiring Incumbents* New Seats Open Seats
1993 GE 295 72   72
1997 GE 301 43 6 49
2000 GE 301 25   25
2004 GE 308 58 7 65
2006 GE 308 28   28
2008 GE 308 38   38
2011 GE 308 19   19
42nd GE 338 58 30 88

So, we have 58 seats either open or already vacant, and I expect as many as 6 others will wind up being open by the time all is said and done. Coupled with the 30 new seats that makes for a record high number of open seats. And that's not even including the cases of the sitting MPs running in different seats, as we discussed a few posts ago.

You can see the full, detailed list of Retiring MPs here (scroll down a bit after clicking it):

or find that link on the main page under the heading "Open Seats / Retiring MPs" as the "Open Seats List".

I've been peppered with questions about these counts all afternoon, so it will save everyone time if I just blogged the answers. Meanwhile, we will bid a fond farewell to the 41st Parliament any minute. Let the 42nd be a kinder, gentler one, please! I've really reached my fill of nastiness in this Parliament.

7 Responses to “Just how many MPs are retiring, anyway?”

  1. Observant says:

    I hope the NDP get better qualified candidates than they did in the 2011 election — the ragtag bunch that got elected in Quebec by Jack’s l’Orange Crushez Wave. I suspect better people are now jumping on the Dipper federal bandwagon now that the polls look encouraging. God knows they need better qualified people than the bunch election in Alberta forcing Notley to import Dipper operatives from Toronto and Ottawa, like Brian Topp, to get some better brains around her. Can’t blame her. Oooh, Canada…..

  2. Ron says:

    Given the Orange wave in Quebec there have been a remarkable number of younger MPs who have demonstrated their competence. Perhaps one of the best examples is the so-called Vegas girl who has won the hearts and support of her constituents, and is now a deputy critic!
    When I look at the NDP bench and then compare it to the Conservative or Liberal, I am impressed that it looks like Canadian society – more women, more visible minorities and more young people, thank goodness!
    Thank you for the informative summary, Alice – your web site is an invaluable source of information and analysis!

  3. Tony says:

    Just a response to the comments on an NDP front bench:

    Representative? — Yes
    Impressive? — Hardly

    There are many many more men, women, minorities that would be much more worthy of serving in a federal government (who-so-ever should win) then the candidates the NDP are currently offering. This isn’t an indictment on the NDP; it’s simply an observation of the reality facing the party. Since they have never had a chance federally historically, the NDP have never been able to attract candidates of high-calibre, i.e. professionals from various industries and fields. Partisanship aside, both the CPC and LPC have been able to attract some good male/female candidates with youth/experience and can present a slate worthy of government –because they’ve previously formed government. The NDP have presented paper-candidates and first year university students that haven’t offer little in comparison with the party candidates. This doesn’t bode well in terms of confidence for voters if they are expected to be looked upon as equal rivals in the coming election.

    Just look at Alberta, before even officially forming government the NDP was cleaning up messes after their young MLA. Ultimately, if the federal NDP stops courting a protest vote, they will have an enormously hard time selling themselves as viable stewards of the Canadian government.

  4. Hi Tony, and welcome to Pundits’ Guide. As this is a data blog, read by practitioners of all stripes, while we do all appreciate good spin, to work here it would have to have numbers behind it. We should try and characterize the career, community and political experience of every candidate, count it up by party and then compare. And then, hopefully, have a point of comparison to earlier slates. Have you made that kind of assessment, in any form that you could share with readers?

  5. Mieka says:

    Dear Pundits Guide,

    Could you at least try to feign non-partisanship in your data analyses on this blog? Its evident that any data that would reflect negatively on the NDP is conveniently overlooked yet data pertaining to other parties that could be perceived as negatively trending is enthusiastically analyzed on this blog.

  6. Hi Mieka, I just tried to email you to ask for some suggested topics, but the email address you supplied is not valid. Feel free to suggest some topics to do with the data I collect, in the comments here, then.

  7. David Young says:

    Add B.C.’s James Moore to the list of retiring M.P.s!

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