Canadian leaders' debates

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Joe Clark and Stockwell Day during the 2000 election debates.

Canadian leaders' debates are leaders' debates televised during federal elections in Canada, made up of two debates, one in French and one in English, usually held on back-to-back nights. The first time these debates were held was during the 1968 election.[1] They were until recently produced by a consortium of the main Canadian television networks, namely the CBC/SRC, CTV, Global and TVA, although other channels such as CPAC (and C-SPAN in the United States; English-language debate only) carry the broadcasts as well.

Inclusion criteria[edit]

Although there are usually a dozen or so political parties registered with Elections Canada at any given time, not all party leaders are invited to the debates. The stated criteria for inclusion have shifted over time with the maneuvering for political advantage, but the typical criteria set by the debate consortium has been that a political party needs to have representation in the House of Commons. Over the years, there have been at least three and as many as five, leaders at each such debate. Public criticism of the debates has emerged outlining that corporate media executives decide who is allowed to be heard in a public forum critical to deciding elected officials. Given the overlap between governments and corporations, there is a conflict of interest having corporate executives impacting elections. There have been calls to have Elections Canada set up an impartial debates protocol.

Following the 1988 federal election, after a decision of the Attorney General of Canada to stay a prosecution under the Broadcasting Act initiated by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) against several Canadian television networks, at the instance of the CRTC, a private prosecution was instituted on behalf of the Green Party of Canada by former Chief Agent and Treasurer[2] Greg Vezina against CBC, CTV and Global, claiming that these broadcasters had breached the Television Broadcasting Regulations 1987, because they had not included the Green Party and other accredited and registered small political party leaders in the leaders' debates during a federal general election and had failed to provide equitable time to them.

In R. v. Canadian Broadcasting Corporation et al., [1993] 51 C.P.R.(3d), the Ontario Court of Appeal held that debates were not of a partisan political character. The Court believed that while the participants in a debate may very well be partisan, the program itself, because it presented more than one view, was not. The court therefore ruled that debates were not covered by the relevant section of the regulations and notwithstanding provisions of under the Canada Elections Act limiting, restricting and in many cases prohibiting contributions of political advertising and broadcasting, declared both acts to be 'a complete code' and therefore there was no requirement to provide any time at all for parties or candidates excluded from debates during election campaigns no matter how many candidates or parties were excluded so long as two or more were included in such programs. (Broadcasters and other media used the same reasoning to exclude commentators and representatives from smaller parties in news and public affairs panels and programs both during and in between elections in Canada.) The case was appealed to the Supreme Court of Canada which refused to grant leave to appeal (without reasons as is the custom) in decision 23881 by Justices La Forest, Sopinka and Major JJ, released on May 6, 1994.[3] Subsequently, the CRTC issued Public Notice CRTC 1995-44, Election-period broadcasting: Debates, which stated, In view of this judgment, the commission will no longer require that so-called "debates" programs feature all rival parties or candidates in one or more programs.[4]

In both the 1993 election and the 2000 election, Greg Vezina working as an independent producer, the Green Party and the Natural Law Party of Canada organized All Party Leaders' Debates which invited the leaders of all registered and accredited parties to participate. On both occasions the leaders of the major parties declined, but the leaders of the other smaller political parties participated. While all other members of the Election Broadcasting Consortium failed to broadcast the 1993 program after announcing they would, in both the 1993 and 2000 the one-hour debates were carried on CBC Newsworld and the debates and another hour of town hall questions and answers afterword on CPAC (English: Cable Public Affairs Channel and in French: La Chaîne d'affaires publiques par câble). The 2000 Debate was the first of its kind broadcast and archived on the Internet on the Democracy Channel website[5]

Prior to the 2008 election, the Green Party, which, from at least the 1997 election until 2008, was consistently the highest-polling party among those without a seat in Parliament, had unsuccessfully argued on several occasions for a role in the debates.

Some commentators[who?] have questioned the rationale for allowing the Bloc Québécois to participate in the English-language debates, given that the Bloc does not contest any ridings outside the predominantly French-language province of Quebec, and garners little support from that province's anglophone residents. In the 1993 French-language debate, Reform Party leader Preston Manning opted to make only an opening statement, as he was only fluent in English at the time.[6] However, as parties with seats in the House of Commons prior to the election, they qualify (or qualified) regardless of this criticism. In 2011, there was considerable controversy about the exclusion of Green Party leader Elizabeth May, who had participated in the 2008 debate.

1968 debate[edit]

Party leaders and participants
Liberal leader, Pierre Trudeau
Pierre Trudeau,
Liberal
Robert Stanfield,
Prog. Conservative
NDP leader, Tommy Douglas Ralliement creditiste leader, Real Caouette
Tommy Douglas,
NDP
Réal Caouette,
Ralliement créditiste

Present at Canada's first leaders debate in 1968 were Liberal leader and prime minister Pierre Trudeau, Progressive Conservative leader Robert Stanfield, New Democratic Party (NDP) leader Tommy Douglas and Réal Caouette of the Ralliement créditiste.

1979 debate[edit]

Party leaders and participants
Liberal leader, Pierre Trudeau Progressive Conservative leader, Joe Clark Ed Broadbent, NDP leader
Pierre Trudeau,
Liberal
Joe Clark,
Prog. Conservative
Ed Broadbent,
NDP

There was one English-language debate in the 1979 election, held in Ottawa by the broadcasting consortium. The debate was moderated by then Dean of the Faculty of Law at the University of Western Ontario, and future Governor General, David Johnston.[7]

The three participants were Liberal leader and incumbent prime minister Pierre Trudeau, Progressive Conservative leader Joe Clark, and NDP leader Ed Broadbent.

1984 debates[edit]

Party leaders and participants
Liberal leader, John Turner Progressive Conservative leader, Brian Mulroney Ed Broadbent, NDP leader
John Turner,
Liberal
Brian Mulroney,
Prog. Conservative
Ed Broadbent,
NDP

The leaders participating in the 1984 leaders' debates were Liberal leader and prime minister John Turner, Progressive Conservative leader Brian Mulroney, and NDP leader Ed Broadbent. The most well-known moment of the debate was when Mulroney confronted Turner over his approval of patronage appointees by the outgoing prime minister, Trudeau. The Progressive Conservatives won a landslide majority, leaving the Liberals nearly tied for second place with the NDP.

1988 debates[edit]

Party leaders and participants
Progressive Conservative leader, Brian Mulroney Liberal leader, John Turner Ed Broadbent, NDP leader
Brian Mulroney,
Prog. Conservative
John Turner,
Liberal
Ed Broadbent,
NDP

The leaders participating were Progressive Conservative leader, and prime minister, Brian Mulroney, Liberal leader John Turner and NDP leader Ed Broadbent. Mulroney's government was re-elected with a reduced majority.

1993 debates[edit]

Party leaders and participants
Progressive Conservative leader, Kim Campbell Liberal leader, Jean Chretien Audrey McLaughlin, NDP leader
Kim Campbell,
Prog. Conservative
Jean Chrétien,
Liberal
Audrey McLaughlin,
NDP
Bloc Quebecois leader, Lucien Bouchard Flag of Canada.svg Reform Party leader, Preston Manning
Lucien Bouchard,
Bloc Québécois
Preston Manning,
Reform

The leaders participating were Progressive Conservative leader, and prime minister, Kim Campbell, Liberal leader Jean Chrétien, NDP leader Audrey McLaughlin, Bloc Québécois leader Lucien Bouchard and Reform Party leader Preston Manning. The governing PCs were reduced to two seats, while the NDP won nine seats. The Bloc Québécois formed the official opposition, while the Reform Party emerged as Canada's main conservative movement.

1997 debates[edit]

Party leaders and participants
Liberal leader, Jean Chretien Bloc Quebecois leader, Gilles Duceppe Reform Party leader, Preston Manning
Jean Chrétien,
Liberal
Gilles Duceppe,
Bloc Québécois
Preston Manning,
Reform
Alexa McDonough, NDP leader Flag of Canada.svg Progressive Conservative leader, Jean Charest
Alexa McDonough,
NDP
Jean Charest,
Prog. Conservative

The leaders participating were Liberal leader and prime minister Jean Chretien, Bloc Québécois leader Gilles Duceppe, Reform Party leader Preston Manning, NDP leader Alexa McDonough and Progressive Conservative leader Jean Charest. The Liberals were re-elected with a reduced majority, the Reform Party replaced the Bloc as official opposition, while the NDP and PCs made significant gains (for the NDP in the Atlantic provinces and the PCs in Quebec) but remained fourth and fifth place respectively.

2000 debates[edit]

Party leaders and participants
Liberal leader, Jean Chretien Canadian Alliance leader, Stockwell Day Bloc Quebecois leader, Gilles Duceppe
Jean Chrétien,
Liberal
Stockwell Day,
Canadian Alliance
Gilles Duceppe,
Bloc Québécois
Alexa McDonough, NDP leader Flag of Canada.svg Progressive Conservative leader, Joe Clark
Alexa McDonough,
NDP
Joe Clark,
Prog. Conservative

The leaders participating were Liberal leader and prime minister Jean Chretien, Canadian Alliance leader Stockwell Day, Bloc Québécois leader Gilles Duceppe, NDP leader Alexa McDonough and Progressive Conservative leader Joe Clark. The Liberals were re-elected with an enlarged majority, the Canadian Alliance (formed by the Reform Party and some PC Party members) failed to make gains outside of the West, while the Bloc Québécois, NDP and PCs all experienced a relative decline.

2004 debates[edit]

Party leaders and participants
Liberal leader, Paul Martin Conservative leader, Stephen Harper
Paul Martin,
Liberal
Stephen Harper,
Conservative
Gilles Duceppe, leader of the Bloc Québécois Jack Layton, leader of the NDP
Gilles Duceppe,
Bloc Québécois
Jack Layton,
NDP

The leaders participating were Liberal leader and prime minister Paul Martin, Conservative Party leader Stephen Harper, Bloc Quebecois leader Gilles Duceppe, and NDP leader Jack Layton

The Liberals were re-elected with a minority, while the Conservative Party (formed by an Alliance-PC merger) made gains in Ontario. A rejuvenated NDP also made gains in Ontario, as did a rejuvenated Bloc Quebecois.

2005/6 debates[edit]

Party leaders and participants
Liberal leader, Paul Martin Conservative leader, Stephen Harper
Paul Martin,
Liberal
Stephen Harper,
Conservative
Gilles Duceppe, leader of the Bloc Québécois Jack Layton, leader of the NDP
Gilles Duceppe,
Bloc Québécois
Jack Layton,
NDP

There were four debates for the 2006 election. The first two were held in Vancouver. The French-language debate was on Thursday, December 15, 2005, followed the next day by the English debate. The English debate was moderated by Trina McQueen, who was President and COO of CTVGlobemedia from 2000 to 2002. The final debates were scheduled for Gatineau or Montreal, the English-language debate on Monday, January 9, the French-language debate on January 10.

The four participants were Liberal leader and incumbent prime minister Paul Martin, Conservative leader Stephen Harper, NDP leader Jack Layton, and Bloc Québécois leader Gilles Duceppe.

The Conservatives were elected with a minority government, while the Liberals became official opposition. Bloc Quebecois support remained mostly stagnant, while the NDP made modest gains.

2008 debates[edit]

Party leaders and participants
Conservative leader, Stephen Harper Liberal leader, Stéphane Dion Jack Layton, leader of the NDP
Stephen Harper
Conservative
Stéphane Dion
Liberal
Jack Layton
NDP
Gilles Duceppe, leader of the Bloc Québécois Flag of Canada.svg Elizabeth May, leader of the Green Party
Gilles Duceppe,
Bloc Québécois
Elizabeth May,
Green

Two debates took place during the 2008 election. The French-language debate was on October 1 from 8:00 to 10:00 p.m. EDT and was moderated by Stéphan Bureau. The English-language debate was held the following evening, from 9:00 to 11:00 p.m. EDT, and was moderated by Steve Paikin. Both were held at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa.[8] The timing of the English debate, at exactly the same time as the previously-scheduled U.S. vice presidential debate, means that Canadian networks did not have to preempt any popular simulcast American programming in order to carry the domestic broadcast. Sources close to the consortium reported that this was indeed a key motivation for choosing the October 2 date.[9]

The five participants were Conservative leader and incumbent prime minister Stephen Harper, Liberal leader Stéphane Dion, NDP leader Jack Layton, Bloc Québécois leader Gilles Duceppe, and Green Party leader Elizabeth May.

The consortium had announced that the Greens would again be excluded from the debates even though sitting MP Blair Wilson had crossed the floor to the Greens just prior to dissolution. Two parties, the Conservatives and the NDP, opposed the inclusion of the Green Party, citing a deal struck between the Green Party and Liberals where the Liberals would not run in Green Party leader Elizabeth May's riding, Central Nova, and the Green party in Liberal leader Stéphane Dion's riding, Saint-Laurent—Cartierville. Stephen Harper and Jack Layton said that if the Green Party were included, they would not participate in the Leaders' Debates. Dion said that while he supports May's inclusion, he would not attend if the prime minister did not, and the Bloc Québécois said it never threatened to boycott the debates.[10] The media consortium in charge of the debate decided that it would prefer to broadcast the debates with the four major party leaders, rather than risk not at all. The Green Party indicated it would lodge a formal complaint with the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC).[11][12] Tony Burman, a former CBC News Chief and Chair of the Network Consortium, called the process "a sham" and called for an independent body to govern the debates.[1]

A considerable public outcry resulted, with extensive coverage on TV, radio, and websites.[13] The NDP leader in particular came under pressure from his own members and supporters.[14] Former prime minister Joe Clark called for May to be included.[15] On September 10, the Conservatives and NDP announced they no longer opposed May's participation; shortly thereafter, the consortium invited May to participate.[16]

Format and draw results[edit]

The following format was to be followed for the 2008 debates:[17]

  • Each leader will have 45 seconds for an opening statement, and the same length for a closing statement.
  • The debates will each be divided into eight themed segments (one question per theme). The leaders will be informed of the themes, but not the questions, five days prior to the debates.
  • Questions will be posed by Canadians via pre-taped segments. These will be selected from questions submitted to the consortium via email.
  • For each question, each leader will have 45 seconds to respond, followed by eight minutes of open debate.

The parties and the consortium later agreed to allot additional time to the economy because of the 2008 global economic crisis. The opening and closing statements have been eliminated.[18]

Pursuant to draws held on September 19, the following order was used for the debates:[17]

Language Order of: First Second Third Fourth Fifth
French Responses to first question Conservative Liberal Green Bloc NDP
Post-debate scrums Bloc Conservative Liberal Green NDP
English Responses to first question Green Liberal Conservative NDP Bloc
Post-debate scrums Liberal Green Bloc NDP Conservative

The Conservatives were re-elected with a slightly increased minority, the Liberals suffered losses but remained official opposition, the Bloc suffered minor losses and the NDP again made modest gains.

2011 debates[edit]

Party leaders and participants
Conservative leader, Stephen Harper Liberal leader, Michael Ignatieff
Stephen Harper,
Conservative
Michael Ignatieff,
Liberal
Gilles Duceppe, leader of the Bloc Québécois Jack Layton, leader of the NDP
Gilles Duceppe,
Bloc Québécois
Jack Layton,
NDP

Two debates took place during the 2011 election. The English-language debate was held on April 12, 2011 from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. EDT, and was moderated by Steve Paikin. The French-language debate was held on April 13 from 8:00 to 10:00 p.m. EDT and was co-moderated by Paul Larocque and Anne-Marie Dussault. Both were held at the Government Conference Centre in Ottawa.[19] After the original date was chosen for the French debate, a Montreal Canadiens playoff hockey game was scheduled for the same day, causing the debate to be moved one night forward. The four participants in both debates were Conservative leader and incumbent prime minister Stephen Harper, Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff, NDP leader Jack Layton, and Bloc Québécois leader Gilles Duceppe. Green Party leader Elizabeth May was excluded from the debate by the media consortium, as her party did not have representation in the House of Commons.[20]

The English debate was best known for Layton's attack on Ignatieff for having the worst House of Commons attendance record of any of the party leaders. Layton said “You know, most Canadians, if they don’t show up for work, they don’t get a promotion." This quote has been compared to Brian Mulroney's “You had an option, sir — you could have said 'no.'” rebuttal to John Napier Turner.[21]

The new Conservative Party won its first majority mandate, and the NDP formed the official opposition for the first time with 103 seats. Conservative gains came mostly at the expense of the Liberals in the GTA, while NDP gains came from equally from the Bloc Quebecois, Liberals and Conservatives in Quebec, and to a lesser extent from the Liberals in Ontario (primarily Toronto). The Liberals came in third (34 seats and less than 19% of the vote), while the Bloc Quebecois was reduced to only 4 seats. The Greens won their first seat in British Columbia.

2015 debates[edit]

Party leaders and participants
Conservative leader, Stephen Harper Thomas Mulcair, leader of the NDP Liberal leader, Justin Trudeau
Stephen Harper,
Conservative
Thomas Mulcair,
NDP
Justin Trudeau,
Liberal
Gilles Duceppe, leader of the Bloc Québécois Flag of Canada.svg Elizabeth May, leader of the Green Party
Gilles Duceppe,
Bloc Québécois
Elizabeth May,
Green

Traditionally, party leaders participated in at least two nationally-televised debates during the federal election - at least one each in English and French. These debates were produced by a consortium of Canada's major television networks.[22] In May 2015, the Conservatives said they would not participate in the consortium debates and instead would take part in as many as five independently staged debates in the run-up to the fall federal election.[22] Ultimately, the Conservatives agreed to participate in a French-language debate organized by the consortium of broadcasters as one of their five debates.[23] The New Democratic Party confirmed that Tom Mulcair would accept every debate where the Prime Minister was present. The NDP had previously confirmed their intention to participate in both of the consortium debates before Stephen Harper withdrew[24][25] but ultimately only participated in the French language consortium debate which included the Conservatives.[23] Liberal leader Justin Trudeau attended the Maclean's, Globe and Mail, and French consortium debates; and the Liberals confirmed he would attend the other debates.[25][26][27][28][29] The Bloc Québécois attended the French language consortium debate and confirmed their attendance at the French-language TVA debate. The Green Party attended the Maclean's and French language consortium debates, and confirmed their intention to participate in the English language consortium debate.[25][28][30][31] Strength in Democracy, which had the same number of seats in the House of Commons at dissolution as the Greens and Bloc Québécois, were not invited to participate in any of the televised debates. The leaders of the party objected to their exclusion and launched a petition demanding that all parties represented in Parliament be invited to the debates.[32] Other minor parties without representation in the House of Commons were not invited to participate in any of the televised debates.

Completed televised debates:

Subject Participants Date Organizer Location Notes
General Conservatives; NDP; Liberals; Greens August 6[33] Rogers Media,[34]
(Maclean's, City)
Toronto English language debate hosted by Maclean's magazine, moderated by political columnist Paul Wells. The debate included live translations into French, Italian, Mandarin, Cantonese and Punjabi. Aired live on City stations (English), CPAC (French), and Omni Television stations (all other languages); streamed live at the Maclean's website and all networks' websites, Facebook, and YouTube; and on Rogers Media news radio stations.[35]
Economy Conservatives; Liberals;[26][29] NDP[23] September 17[29] The Globe and Mail and Google Canada[36] Calgary English language debate on the Canadian economy hosted by The Globe and Mail, moderated by editor-in-chief David Walmsley. The first half of the 90-minute debate covered five central themes on the economy: jobs, energy and the environment, infrastructure, housing and taxation. The second half consisted of follow-up questions and questions sent in by voters. Aired live nationwide on CPAC in both official languages with an additional English feed in Ontario on CHCH,[37] streamed live on The Globe and Mail’s website, and distributed on YouTube. Uninvited Green Party leader Elizabeth May answered questions on Twitter live during the debate at an event in Victoria, British Columbia.[38]
General Conservatives; NDP; Liberals; Greens; Bloc Québécois[23] September 24[23] Consortium (CBC/Radio-Canada, CTV, Global, Télé-Québec) and La Presse Montreal French language debate organized by the consortium of broadcasters and the Montreal newspaper La Presse, moderated by Ici RDI journalist Anne-Marie Dussault.[23][25][39] The debate included live translation into English. Aired live in French on Ici Radio-Canada Télé and Télé-Québec stations, and participant networks' websites; and in English on CBC News Network, CTV News Channel, and participant networks' websites.[31]
Foreign Policy Conservatives; NDP; Liberals[23] September 28[23] Aurea Foundation[40] and Facebook Canada[41] Toronto Bilingual[23] debate on Canada's foreign policy hosted as part of the foundation's regular Munk Debates,[27] moderated by Rudyard Griffiths.[42] The debate consisted of six 12-minute segments, with two leaders debating for the first seven minutes and the third leader brought in to the debate for the final five.[42] Aired on CPAC in both official languages with an additional English feed in Ontario on CHCH,[43] streamed live on the Munk Debates website, and distributed on Facebook.[41]
General Conservatives; NDP; Liberals; Bloc Québécois;[44] October 2[44] Quebecor Media (TVA) Montreal French language debate organized by private broadcaster TVA, moderated by TVA Nouvelles anchor Pierre Bruneau. The debate focused on three themes: the economy, national security and Canada’s place in the world, and social policies; the format consisted of six rounds of four-minute debate between two leaders, with an open debate section at the end of each theme.[45] Aired live in French on TVA stations, Le Canal Nouvelles, and streamed on the TVA Nouvelles website;[45] Aired with simultaneous interpretation to English on CPAC.[46]

Proposed debates:

Subject Invited Participants Date Organizer Location Notes
General Conservatives (declined); NDP (declined); Liberals; Greens [25] October 8 (proposed)[25] Consortium (CBC/Radio-Canada, CTV, Global, Télé-Québec) TBA English language debate organized by the consortium of broadcasters.[23][25][47]
Women's Issues Conservatives (declined); NDP; Liberals; Greens; Bloc Québécois[48] Up For Debate Debate that was to focus on issues identified by Up for Debate, an alliance of Canadian women's organizations.[49] Later re-formatted as a panel discussion Toronto hosted by Up for Debate, the Toronto Star, and Le Devoir. Leaders were interviewed separately and their pre-recorded responses were discussed and debated by panellists led by author Jess Beaulieu.[48]
Elderly Issues NDP[50] TBD CARP[50] TBD
Economy Conservatives; NDP; Liberals[51] TBD Bloomberg News[51] TBD English language debate
General TBD Huffington Post, Twitter Canada, and Samara Canada[52] TBD

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Burman, Tony (September 10, 2008). "Former CBC News chief: The election debate process is a sham". The Globe and Mail. Toronto. Retrieved 2008-09-11. 
  2. ^ [1] Alberta Greens Newsletter Volume 6 Number 3 Autumn 1994
  3. ^ [2] Judgements of the Supreme Court of Canada, Bulletin of May 6, 1994
  4. ^ [3] Public Notice CRTC 1995-44
  5. ^ [4] link to Democracy Channel website http://democracychannel.net
  6. ^ Hébert, Chantal (2008-09-10). "Networks have lost their journalistic backbone". Toronto Star. Retrieved 2008-09-10. 
  7. ^ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JBfDSimvCFY
  8. ^ News Release - 2008 Leaders' Debate, September 8, 2008
  9. ^ Brennan, Richard (2008-09-27). "It's duelling debates for Canadian viewers". Toronto Star. Retrieved 2008-09-30. 
  10. ^ "Green leader blames Harper, Layton for being barred from debates". canada.com. Retrieved 2008-09-09. 
  11. ^ "News Release - 2008 Leaders' Debates". CNW group. Retrieved 2008-09-09. 
  12. ^ Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (September 2008). "Greens can't participate in leaders debates, networks rule". CBC News. Archived from the original on September 11, 2008. Retrieved 2008-09-09. 
  13. ^ "May gets green light with a push from the people". Globe and Mail. Toronto. Archived from the original on September 14, 2008. Retrieved 2008-09-11. 
  14. ^ MacCharles, Tonda (September 10, 2008). "May pins hopes on outcry". The Star. Toronto. Retrieved 2008-09-11. 
  15. ^ "Let Elizabeth May speak". Globe and Mail. Toronto. Archived from the original on September 13, 2008. Retrieved 2008-09-11. 
  16. ^ Broadcast Consortium to invite Elizabeth May to participate in 2008 Leaders' Debates, press release, September 10, 2008
  17. ^ a b Broadcast Consortium press release, September 19, 2008
  18. ^ Economy engulfs TV debates, Bruce Campion-Smith, Toronto Star, October 1, 2008
  19. ^ News Article - Canadians heard our message: Leaders, April 12, 2011
  20. ^ News Article - Leaders' debates set without May, March 30, 2011
  21. ^ [5]
  22. ^ a b "Broadcasters fight back against federal leaders' debate changes". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved May 28, 2015. 
  23. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Payton, Laura (August 12, 2015). "Harper, Mulcair and Trudeau confirm participation in Munk Debates, 2nd French debate". CBC News. Retrieved August 12, 2015. 
  24. ^ "Canada election 2015: NDP threatens to pull out of broadcasters' debates". cbc.ca. July 31, 2015. 
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  26. ^ a b "Conservatives, NDP agree to Globe election debate on economy". The Globe and Mail. 
  27. ^ a b "Munk Debates - Federal Election Debate Announcement - First Ever Federal Election Debate on Foreign Policy Proposed". newswire.ca. 
  28. ^ a b "Harper, Mulcair, Trudeau et Beaulieu croiseront le fer à TVA - ICI.Radio-Canada.ca". Radio-Canada.ca. 
  29. ^ a b c "Harper, Mulcair and Trudeau confirm Globe debate attendance". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved August 4, 2015. 
  30. ^ "A viewer's guide to the Maclean's National Leaders Debate". Macleans.ca. 
  31. ^ a b "Agreement reached for televised French-language 2015 leaders debate". Global News. 12 August 2015. Retrieved 19 September 2015. 
  32. ^ "Strength in Democracy demands to be present in debates". Strength in Democracy. 17 August 2015. Retrieved 31 August 2015. 
  33. ^ "Maclean's Election Debate To Feature All 4 National Party Leaders". Huffington Post. Retrieved June 21, 2015. 
  34. ^ "Conservatives turn down traditional TV debates for leaders". thestar.com. May 12, 2015. Retrieved May 28, 2015. 
  35. ^ "Federal leaders' debate: 5 things to watch for tonight". CBC.ca. 2015-08-06. Retrieved 2015-08-06. 
  36. ^ "Conservatives, NDP agree to Globe election debate on economy". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved May 28, 2015. 
  37. ^ "And the only place you can watch it on broadcast TV in Ontario is on CHCH." "Leaders prepping for debate". CHCH. Channel Zero Inc. 17 September 2015. Retrieved 26 September 2015. 
  38. ^ "Elizabeth May dominates debate on Twitter". CTV News. Retrieved 25 September 2015. 
  39. ^ O'Malley, Kady (24 September 2015). "Here's why you should watch the French leaders' debate (even if you only speak English)". National Post. Retrieved 2 October 2015. 
  40. ^ "Federal election 2015: Munk Debates wins bid to host foreign policy face-off". cbc.ca. May 21, 2015. Retrieved May 28, 2015. 
  41. ^ a b "Date Announced For First Ever Federal Election Debate on Foreign Policy". Election Debate. Munk Debates. Retrieved 31 August 2015. 
  42. ^ a b Blanchfield, Mike (27 September 2015). "Moderator asks Harper, Trudeau, Mulcair to skip talking points in upcoming foreign policy debate". Toronto Star. Retrieved 28 September 2015. 
  43. ^ "CHCH... is the only over the air broadcaster running the next English language leaders debate live this coming Monday" "Main party leaders are back on the campaign trail". CHCH News. Channel Zero Inc. 25 September 2015. Retrieved 26 September 2015. 
  44. ^ a b McRobie, Deane (June 3, 2015). "TVA to hold French-language leaders' debate on October 2". Retrieved August 6, 2015. 
  45. ^ a b Kestler-D’Amours, Jillian (2 October 2015). "Leaders prepare for last debate before federal election". Toronto Star. Retrieved 2 October 2015. 
  46. ^ O'Malley, Kady (1 October 2015). "@Kady: Here's what you need to know about tomorrow's French debate". Ottawa Citizen. Retrieved 2 October 2015. 
  47. ^ The Canadian Press (28 September 2015). "Duceppe should be invited to traditional English-language TV debate, May says". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 2 October 2015. 
  48. ^ a b Levinson King, Robin (21 September 2015). "Up for Debate panel on gender justice and equality". Toronto Star. Retrieved 23 September 2015. 
  49. ^ "Who We Are". Up for Debate. Retrieved 23 September 2015. 
  50. ^ a b http://www.nationalnewswatch.com/2015/05/21/conservative-debate-dance-card-nearly-full-with-four-match-ups/#.VV4KBk_pdBc
  51. ^ a b http://www.canada.com/News/canada/Gargoyle+Another+media+organization+jumps+election+debate+fray/11055621/story.html
  52. ^ http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/kenny-yum/leaders-debate_b_7346668.html