Government Elections

Review the limits on how much political parties can spend during elections, and ensure that spending between elections is subject to limits.

Liberal Platform Page 27 October 5, 2015
Dec 2018

Election reform bill passed in time for implementation in 2019 federal vote

The Globe and Mail December 10, 2018

Legislation aimed at preventing foreign interference and constraining the influence of big money in Canadian elections has been approved by the Senate. Bill C-76 passed in the upper house late Monday on a vote of 54-31 and is expected to receive royal assent later this week.

It will limit spending by parties and advocacy groups during the three-month period before an election is officially called, as well as during the official campaign. And it scraps a Tory-instituted provision allowing parties to spend $650,000 for each day a campaign exceeds the minimum 37 days and caps the maximum campaign length at 50 days.

Bill C-76 received royal assent and became law on December 13, 2018.

Apr 2018

Trudeau government proposes major changes to elections law

CBC News April 30, 2018

The Trudeau government is proposing to limit the length of federal election campaigns, restrict the amount of spending allowed in the period immediately before a campaign and introduce new rules to regulate third-party political activity — all part of a new set of reforms to Canada’s elections laws.

In broad strokes, Bill C-76 touches on a series of concerns that have been raised about Canada’s electoral and political systems, including changes made by the previous Conservative government, the activity of third-party organizations and the collection of data by political parties.

The Liberals had promised to regulate party spending between campaigns. They now propose that, in years when a fixed election date is to be honoured in October, a "pre-writ period" would commence on June 30, running until the start of the official writ period. During that pre-writ period, political parties would be able to spend only $1.5 million on partisan advertising.

The bill referenced in the article is Bill C-76.

May 2017

Federal Liberals set to introduce stricter rules, more transparency for political fundraising

National Post May 30, 2017

Canada's political fundraising rules are getting another overhaul, as the Liberal government is set to introduce a bill that will force all parties to follow stricter standards on transparency in fundraising events.

The government is still working on a larger-scale package of reforms to election rules, expected in the fall.

Under current rules, there are two general loopholes available to third parties: they only need to report contributions made in the six months leading up to an election writ, and during an election they only have spending limits on advertising. The costs of hiring staff, conducting polls, holding rallies, running a website and any other activities that don't directly fit the category of "advertising" are not regulated by Elections Canada, as they are for political parties.