Saturday, February 13, 2021

Newfoundland Election Disaster

 I've been holding off on making a post about this, but, I think it is time. 

Lets quickly go over events. 

On January 15th, Andrew Furey, Premier, called an election. 

On February 8th, 11 new Covid case were reported, the largest spike in nearly a year. By the 10th, daily new cases reached 50. 

Since then, the handling of the situation has been disastrous to say the least. First, voting was cancelled in 18 ridings (put off to a later date) but results would not be announced until that later date. This is, to my knowledge, unpresented in Canada. We have had many delayed elections before, usually in only one or two ridings; but results are always announced on time. 

This is when I learned something; apparently, people not being allowed to vote in NL is not unusual. While I've not found specific instances, I've read reports of people unable to vote in past elections due to, for example, car ferries not operating. 

How this could be allowed to occur ever is mind boggling. How it could occur more than once is offensively outrageous. I learned this at about the same time I learned some polling stations in ridings that were due to vote on-time, would be closed. 

Finally, 12 hours before the opening of polls, it was announced that no in-person voting would occur. Instead, the election becomes a mail-in one, with a deadline of March 1st. 

We've covered numerous elections during this pandemic, but never have I seen one handled so poorly. Even worse is that NL's financial situation is just as disastrous as its electoral planning. There is some talk the province may need to declare bankruptcy. 

Why is NL nearly bankrupt? Simply; voters kept voting for governments that liked to spend all that oil money. Once the oil money dried up, everything collapsed. Covid simply pushed forward the crisis to now. This Macleans article has an excellent graphic showing the problem. 

I am really not quite sure what else to say about this fiasco. 

Regardless. I'll let you know of the election results, either on March 1st, or, whenever we have them. 

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