Canadian federal election, 1878

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Canadian federal election, 1878
Canada
← 1874 September 17, 1878 1882 →

206 seats in the 4th Canadian Parliament
104 seats needed for a majority
  First party Second party
  Sir John A Macdonald circa 1878 retouched.jpg Alexander Mackenzie portrait.jpg
Leader John A. Macdonald Alexander Mackenzie
Party Conservative Liberal
Leader since 1867 1873
Leader's seat Victoria Lambton
Last election 65 seats, 30.1% 129 seats, 39.5%
Seats won 134 63
Seat change Increase69 Decrease66
Popular vote 229,151 180,074
Percentage 42.1% 33.1%
Swing Increase12.0% Decrease6.4%

Canada 1878 Federal Election.svg

Prime Minister before election

Alexander Mackenzie
Liberal

Prime Minister-designate

John A. Macdonald
Conservative

The Canadian federal election of 1878 was held on September 17 to elect members of the Canadian House of Commons of the 4th Parliament of Canada. It resulted in the end of Prime Minister Alexander Mackenzie's Liberal government after only one term in office. Canada suffered an economic depression during Mackenzie's term, and his party was punished by the voters for it. The Liberals' policy of free trade also hurt their support with the business establishment in Toronto and Montreal.

Sir John A. Macdonald and his Conservative/Liberal-Conservative party was returned to office after having been defeated five years before amidst scandals over the building of the Canadian Pacific Railway. Voter turn-out: 69.1%

National results[edit]

The Canadian parliament after the 1878 election
134 63 9
Conservative Liberal O
Party Party leader # of candidates Seats Popular vote
1874 Elected Change # % Change
  Conservative John A. Macdonald 101 38 85 +118.4% 143,192 26.28% +7.80pp
  Liberal-Conservative 60 26 49 +76.9% 85,999 15.78% +3.50pp
  Liberal Alexander Mackenzie 121 126 63 -54.8% 180,074 33.05% -7.74pp
  Independent 11 4 5 +25% 14,783 2.71% -0.48pp
  Independent Conservative 2 2 2 - 1,001 0.18% -0.76pp
  Unknown 117 -   114,043 20.93% -1.93pp
  Independent Liberal 4 1 1 +100% 5,388 0.99% -
  Nationalist Conservative 1 * 1 * 401 0.07% *
Total 417 197 206 +3.6% 100.0% -
Sources: http://www.elections.ca -- History of Federal Ridings since 1867

Note:

* Party did not nominate candidates in the previous election.

Acclamations

The following Members of Parliament were elected by acclamation;

  • British Columbia: 1 Conservative, 1 Liberal-Conservative
  • Manitoba: 2 Conservatives, 1 Liberal-Conservative
  • Quebec: 1 Conservative, 2 Liberal-Conservatives, 1 Liberal
  • New Brunswick: 1 Liberal, 1 Independent

Results by province[edit]

Party name BC MB ON QC NB NS PE Total
  Conservative Seats: 1 2 37 33 1 8 3 85
  Popular vote (%): - 49.6 25.5 35.0 5.9 21.7 31.6 26.3
  Liberal-Conservative Seats: 2 1 23 12 3 6 2 49
  Vote (%): 39.6 - 15.8 13.2 14.3 22.7 12.0 15.8
  Liberal Seats: 2   27 17 9 7 1 63
  Vote (%): -   36.3 21.7 48.2 34.9 37.2 33.1
  Independent Seats: 1   1 1 2 -   5
  Vote (%): 12.2   1.5 1.6 13.1 4.3   2.7
  Independent Conservative Seats:   1   1       2
  Vote (%):   50.4   0.7       0.2
  Unknown Seats:  
  Vote (%): 48.2   19.9 27.4 14.8 14.7 19.3 20.9
  Independent Liberal Seats:       1 -   1
  Vote (%):     1.0   3.7 1.7   1.0
  Nationalist Conservative Seats:     1 -   1
  Vote (%):       0.3       0.1
Total seats 6 4 88 65 16 21 6 206

Vote and seat summaries[edit]

Popular vote
Conservative
  
42.06%
Liberal
  
33.05%
Others
  
24.89%
Seat totals
Conservative
  
65.05%
Liberal
  
30.58%
Others
  
4.37%

Further reading[edit]

  • Argyle, Ray. Turning Points: The Campaigns That Changed Canada - 2011 and Before (2011) excerpt and text search ch 3

See also[edit]