Canada: PM Trudeau avoids snap election in confidence vote | News | DW | 21.10.2020
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Canada: PM Trudeau avoids snap election in confidence vote

With support from other parties, Justin Trudeau's government avoided a snap general election. The parliament voted against a motion to create a special committee to probe the government's ethics and pandemic spending.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's Liberal government won a vote of confidence on Wednesday, thereby avoiding a snap election, as the COVID-19 crisis worsens. 

Members of parliament voted 180-146 against a motion from the Conservatives to create a special committee to probe the government's ethics and pandemic spending.

Read more: Canada's finance minister resigns amid coronavirus pandemic

Support from other parties

Trudeau's minority government was able to garner the support of New Democratic Party (NDP), along with a handful of Green and independent MPs. 

"Parliament chose to back Canadians rather than political games," Liberal House leader Pablo Rodriguez told reporters. 

Trudeau's party had won only a minority of seats in the election a year ago, and required the support of other parties to remain in power. 

Canada will not need to go through another election, as winter arrives and the country braces for a second wave of coronavirus infections.

A poll by the research group EKOS showed that more than 70% of Canadians said they did not want a snap election, according to Reuters. 

Probe into ethics

The opposition Conservatives wanted a probe into the government awarding the contract to run a C$900 million (€577 million) student grant program to the WE charity that had paid Trudeau's family members for engagements in previous years.

The motion also called for a committee to probe the efficacy of the government's pandemic spending. 

"Too many Canadians have been left behind in the Trudeau government's slow, confused and issue-plagued COVID-19 pandemic response – and the prime minister is avoiding accountability at
all costs," said Conservative leader Erin O'Toole in a news conference.

Trudeau has apologized for taking part in a cabinet decision to use the charity, which has since pulled out of the program. 

tg/rc (AFP, Reuters)

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