It's been a long time coming, this last day of the election campaign. And it's been a campaign that covered a lot of ground -- some good soil and some swamp. Tim Harper writes:
We went from debating budget bottom lines to a discussion which cut to the core of what it meant to be Canadian — the value of our citizenship, our history of welcoming the world’s neediest, our treatment of our neighbours, our place in the world, our accommodation to others with different customs and garb.
Some of the debate soared. Some of it headed straight to the ditch, sullied by a welt of lies and exaggerations meant to sow fear and appeal to our innermost darkness rather than challenging us to rise above the distractions and seek to become better Canadians.Niqabs, snitch lines and revoked citizenships really had no place in this campaign, but there they were, alongside brothels in the suburbs and “marijuana stores” beside schools.
Early on, it appeared we were heading for history with the potential election of Mulcair and the first NDP government in this country.
What ever happens, today will make history:
If he wins, Trudeau will become the first offspring of a prime minister to win the job himself and he will have steered a party from third place at the dissolution of Parliament to victory for the first time in Canadian history.
If he loses Monday, Harper will be the first prime minister in 36 years to go from a majority of his making to conceding defeat on election night. The last? Trudeau’s father, Pierre Trudeau, in his 1979 defeat at the hands of Progressive Conservative Joe Clark.
Should Harper prevail, he will become the first Canadian leader to win four consecutive elections in more than a century, since Sir Wilfrid Laurier. He would have done it by defeating four different Liberal leaders.
This has been no ordinary election. It has made history.