Today is the deadline for election candidates to register

Today is the deadline for election candidates to register

Almost all of the federal political parties have a full slate of candidates, but today is their last chance to make changes. 

The Liberals, Conservatives, NDP and Greens will be represented in all 338 ridings across the country. 

The People’s Party said as of Sunday they were sitting at 326 — with no nominated candidates in Prince Edward Island — as the deadline ticked closer.

After 2 p.m. local time today, the candidate nomination process closes. 

That means if candidates withdraw or are kicked out, parties won’t be allowed to fill the slot. 

“That’s why we encourage candidates not to wait until the last minute, because if there is a mistake or an error, that would have been past the deadline,” said Nathalie Demontigny of Elections Canada told CBC News last week.

Candidate vetting in the age of social media has created hiccups across the board during this election season. 

Candidate woes

Each of the parties has booted or reviewed candidates, most of them for racist or inappropriate comments and social media posts.

The Liberals turfed well-known imam Hassan Guillet after anti-semitic comments surfaced. The Conservatives kicked out Cameron Ogilvie for discriminatory social media posts. The NDP booted Dock Currie because of online posts. The Greens have been forced to re-vet candidates after anti-abortion comments came to light, leader Elizabeth May said. And the PPC expelled a candidate after he asked leader Maxime Bernier to denounce racism. 

Breaking it down

The NDP had a slow start to their nominations process, with several dozen candidates missing as the campaign started. Meanwhile the Conservatives and PPC have had almost a full slate since kickoff day at the beginning of September.

Conservatives say 107 of their candidates are women — a record for the party.

The NDP provided a full demographic breakdown of their candidates. Almost half of their candidates — 49 per cent (166), are female, while 24 per cent (80) are racialized, 12 per cent (40) are from the LGBTQ2 community, 12 per cent (39) are youth candidates, eight per cent (27) are Indigenous and five per cent (17) are living with a disability.

The Green Party said 46 per cent (156) of their candidates are women and four non-binary, five per cent (18) are racialized, four per cent (12) indigenous, and eight per cent (28) from the LGBTQ2 community.

Among the requirements to be eligible to run, a person must be 18, a Canadian citizen and have collected the names, addresses, and signatures of at least 100 qualified electors.

A candidate can still withdraw his or her nomination by 5 p.m. local time on Sept. 30. But they must personally file a written statement of withdrawal with the returning officer, sign it and have it witnessed by two qualified electors, according to Elections Canada.

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