Canadians head to the polls September 20th

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Canadians will be going to the polls in just over one month, with a long-speculated federal election now officially called for September 20th.

On Sunday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau brought his wife Sophie Grégoire Trudeau, and three children, Xavier, Ella-Grace, and Hadrien down the road from his current residence at Rideau Cottage to Rideau Hall, official home of the Governor General of Canada, to ask her to dissolve Parliament and call an election. Trudeau held a majority government from 2015-2019, and was elected with a minority government on November 4, 2019.

Governor General Mary Simon is new in the role, appointed by Trudeau and approved by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II on July 26, 2021, only 23 days ago. Simon granted this request after sitting with the Governor General for over half-an-hour.

Leader of the Liberal Party, Trudeau held a press conference after the official word from the Governor General. The majority of his current term has been dominated by the health, economic, and fiscal crises of the COVID-19 pandemic. Trudeau noted that in 2019 when Canadians last went to the polls, Canadians did not vote on how they'd like their government to handle a pandemic. While he has been able to pass legislation with his minority government, Trudeau and the Liberal Party called the election because they want to give Canadians a chance to voice their opinion and to vote on the big decisions surrounding how to end the pandemic, decisions which will affect the country for decades to come.

The Conservative Party Leader Erin O'Toole, NDP Party Leader Jagmeet Singh, Green Party Leader Annamie Paul, and Bloc Quebecois Party Leader Yves-Francois Blanchet all criticized the Leader of the Liberal Party for calling an election at this time.

Despite being asked several times by reporters, Trudeau did not say whether he would resign if his party does not acquire a majority government in September.

Trudeau said that the most important responsibility of the government is to keep Canadians safe and thriving, and his government aims to do that through vaccines, COVID-19 supports including the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy and Canada Emergency Response Benefit, affordable housing and affordable childcare, good jobs, a clean and protected environment with a strong focus on responding to climate change, strong health care, and by working hard at reconciliation. Mr. Trudeau encouraged all Canadians to make their voice heard on September 20th, because "together we can do so much more than we can do apart."

Canadians will be able to vote at in-person polling stations on election day, by mail ballot, or by advanced poll.