Ontario general election, 1945

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Ontario general election, 1945
Ontario
1943 ←
June 4, 1945
→ 1948

90 seats in the 22nd Legislative Assembly of Ontario
46 seats were needed for a majority
  First party Second party
  GeorgeDrew.jpg Mitchell Hepburn1 crop.jpg
Leader George Drew Mitchell Hepburn
Party Progressive Conservative Liberal
Leader since December 9, 1938 April 2, 1945
Leader's seat High Park Elgin (lost re-election)
Last election 38 15
Seats won 66 14
Seat change +28 -1
Percentage 44.3% 29.8%
Swing +8.6pp -1.4pp

  Third party Fourth party
  Ted jolliffe 1942.jpg LP
Leader Ted Jolliffe Leslie Morris
Party Co-operative Commonwealth Labor-Progressive
Leader since April 3, 1942 1945
Leader's seat York South (lost re-election) Ran in Bracondale (Lost)
Last election 34 2
Seats won 8 2
Seat change -26 ±0
Percentage 22.4% 2.4%
Swing -9.3pp

Premier before election

George Drew
Progressive Conservative

Elected Premier

George Drew
Progressive Conservative

The Ontario general election of 1945 was held on June 4, 1945, to elect the 90 members of the 22nd Legislative Assembly of Ontario (Members of Provincial Parliament, or "MPPs") of the Province of Ontario, Canada.

The Ontario Progressive Conservative Party, led by George Drew, won a second consecutive term in office, winning a solid majority of seats in the legislature—66, up from 38 in the previous election.

The Ontario Liberal Party, led by former premier Mitchell Hepburn, was returned to the role of official opposition with 11 seats, plus 3 Liberal-Labour seats that it won in coalition with the Labor-Progressive Party (which was, in fact, the Communist Party). The three new Liberal-Labour MPPs were James Newman of Rainy River, Joseph Meinzinger of Waterloo North and Alexander Parent of Essex North.

The social democratic Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (CCF), led by Ted Jolliffe, was reduced from 34 seats to only 8.

Two seats were won by the Labor-Progressive Party on its own with the re-election of A.A. MacLeod and J.B. Salsberg. The LPP contested a total of 31 ridings under the leadership of Leslie Morris who was defeated in the Toronto riding of Bracondale. As well, the Labor-Progressive Party ran several joint candidates with the Liberals under the Liberal-Labour banner.

The Drew government called the election in an attempt to get a majority government. By exploiting increasing Cold War tensions, the PC Party was able to defeat Jolliffe's CCF by stoking fears about communism. Jolliffe replied by giving a radio speech (written by Lister Sinclair) that accused Drew of running a political gestapo in Ontario, alleging that a secret department of the Ontario Provincial Police was acting as a political police spying on the opposition and the media. This accusation led to a backlash, and loss of support for the CCF, including the loss of Jolliffe's own seat of York South. This probably helped Drew win his majority, although in the 1970s, archival evidence was discovered proving the charge.

Results[edit]

  Party Leader 1943 Elected % change Popular vote
 % change
     Progressive Conservative George Drew 38 66 +73.7% 44.3% +8.6%
     Liberal Mitchell Hepburn 15 11 -26.7% 29.8% -1.4%
     Liberal-Labour - 3  
     Co-operative Commonwealth Ted Jolliffe 34 8 -76.5% 22.4% -9.3%
     Labor-Progressive Party Leslie Morris 2 2 - 2.4%  
     Liberal Independent   1 - -    
Total Seats 90 90 - 100%  

See also[edit]