Canada's Green Party pulled off a rare victory on Monday in a special election for a parliamentary seat, provisional results showed, dealing a fresh blow to the ruling Liberals of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. The win in the Pacific province of British Columbia was only the second time the Greens, who are a much less important political force than in Europe, have captured a federal seat in their 36-year history.
Green candidate Paul Manly won the constituency of Nanaimo-Ladysmith with about 38 per cent of the vote. Party leader Elizabeth May holds a seat in the same province. The Liberals, trying to recover from a political scandal just months ahead of an October election, ran a prominent local candidate but trailed in fourth place with about 11 per cent. They had come a close second in 2015, winning 23.5 per cent. The official opposition Conservatives and left-leaning New Democrats both took about 24 per cent each.
Trudeau and the Liberals are mired in accusations of interference in a corporate corruption case that triggered the resignations of two cabinet members, the prime minister's top adviser and the head of the federal civil service. Nanaimo-Ladysmith became vacant after the sitting legislator from the opposition New Democrats quit.
The New Democrats, who, like the Greens, compete with the Liberals for centre-left voters, have struggled under Jagmeet Singh, the first person from an ethnic minority to lead a major political party in Canada. Polls show the Conservatives have a good chance to topple Trudeau in the October election.
(With inputs from agencies.)