Canada's electoral history from 1867 to today

There's a lot of people in this database!
(And many details, too!)

by Maurice Y. Michaud (he/him)

J2019 federal compositeust as the people who vote are at the heart of every election, the people who run for office are at the heart of this database. In fact, there are 68,311 persons to be found in this section!

I have spent and I continue to spend countless hours revising the data over and over to ensure that the same person has been entered consistently and correctly. Their gender identity is also recorded, including those who identified as non-binary despite the fact that they still represent a minuscule minority of those who stand for election. Then, for every candidate for whom I could find more information (mostly those who have won, but others as well), I have created a profile showing their date of birth and death (if applicable), whether or not they died while in office, their relationship with other profiled candidates and, of course, their electoral and political history that takes into account their age at each pivotal moment of their career. All candidates have at least a unique numerical identifier to make it easier and faster for you and me to pull their electoral data.

These tables summarize how many unique names are recorded in this database, by jurisdiction. The Total row makes an adjustment in order to give the real number of unique names, as the same person could have run at both levels or even in several jurisdictions. Additionally, we can see the number of electoral runs of each person, by gender identity.

Unique names
F: Federal    P: Provincial/Territorial    T: Total
Juri. M F X Total
F P T F P T F P T F P T
9 AB 1,764 4,395 6,159 414 885 1,299 0 1 1 2,178 5,281 7,459
8 BC 2,295 4,462 6,757 596 885 1,481 1 2 3 2,892 5,349 8,241
11 MB 1,172 3,137 4,309 207 476 683 1 1 2 1,380 3,614 4,994
3 NB 781 2,678 3,459 126 482 608 0 0 0 907 3,160 4,067
7 NL 324 1,316 1,640 77 268 345 0 1 1 401 1,585 1,986
2 NS 956 2,536 3,492 118 456 574 0 2 2 1,074 2,994 4,068
14 NT 62 454 516 18 106 124 0 0 0 80 560 640
13 NU 18 234 252 9 64 73 0 0 0 27 298 325
15 NW 47 175 222 0 0 0 0 0 0 47 175 222
6 ON 7,622 8,399 16,021 1,488 1,533 3,021 1 1 2 9,111 9,933 19,044
4 PE 255 1,202 1,457 41 170 211 0 0 0 296 1,372 1,668
5 QC 6,492 8,386 14,878 1,299 1,978 3,277 1 1 2 7,792 10,365 18,157
10 SK 1,091 2,881 3,972 165 423 588 0 0 0 1,256 3,304 4,560
12 YT 60 351 411 12 126 138 0 0 0 72 477 549
Total 22,939 40,606 63,545 4,570 7,852 12,422 4 9 13 27,513 48,467 75,980
Diff. = -6,580 56,965 Diff. = -1,088 11,334 Diff. = -1 12 Diff. = -7,669 68,311
The name of 243 candidates (0.36%) is incomplete. Given the nature of archiving and record keeping in the 19th century up to the mid-20th century in some jurisdictions, it is unlikely that those names will ever be found.
  Electoral runs
0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10+ Total
M 75 35,234 9,850 4,514 2,723 1,799 1,095 660 388 269 358 56,965
F 5 8,055 1,875 728 340 138 81 48 17 12 35 11,334
X 0 9 2 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 12
T 80
0.12%
43,298
63.38%
11,727
17.17%
5,243
7.68%
3,063
4.48%
1,937
2.84%
1,176
1.72%
708
1.04%
405
0.59%
281
0.41%
393
0.58%
68,311
In other words, an important plurality of unique names appear only once in this database.
In most cases, 0 electoral run represents a person who chose not to run after having been elected prior their jurisdiction's entry into Confederation. However, a few represent unelected ministers who sat in the Senate or their jurisdiction's legislative council, senators related to an elected individual, or pre-Confederation persons of interest for whom a full profile has been created.

And as I mentioned, in addition to "Unique names," there are the people from whom there is a full profile on this website, who can be found according to multiple criteria (by gender identity, whether they are alive or not, etc.) or by category. "Elected candidate" is by far the most common category, followed by "Known but unelected candidate" and "Perennial candidate."

What brings this database to a higher level compared to others of its kind is the fact that each profile usually has at least one link to an external website which leads to more details on the profiled individual. It is by following some of the 33,135 links recorded so far to 30,058 online documents that you are likely to get engrossed as I did into reading about some of these individuals. So the second table shows the number of profiles by the number of links they have (links to bilingual websites are counted only once), while the last table shows how many of these individuals have or had at least one familial link with another profiled individual.

Profiles in PoliCan (22.32%)*
Alive    Dead
Category
M F X Total
T T T T
Elected 3,482 9,476 12,958 1,121 193 1,314 3 0 3 4,606 9,669 14,275
Unelected 152 596 748 55 41 96 4 0 4 211 637 848
Perennial 49 57 106 12 4 16 0 0 0 61 61 122
Total 3,683 10,129 13,812 1,188 238 1,426 7 0 7 4,878 10,367 15,245
* Percentage of unique names with a full profile

The profile of someone elected prior to Confederation but NOT afterwards has been filed in the "Elected" category, while the profile of someone elected only at the municipal or county level has been filed in "Known but unelected candidate" as those lower levels of government are outside the scope of this database. Senators who served in cabinet have also been filed in "Known but unelected candidate" if they have never been elected federally or provincially.

While the relatively small number of profiles for women is glaring, it is interesting to note that most of the women who have a profile are still alive. Even though women have had the right to vote for a bit more than a century in most jurisdictions, they only started to be elected in more significant numbers to legislative assemblies in the 1980s, and parity with men is still very far from being achieved.
  Number of profiles with X external links
0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10+ Total
M 95 3,105 6,144 3,663 579 172 44 8 2 0 0 13,812
F 31 281 476 586 40 4 5 1 1 0 1 1,426
X 0 3 1 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 7
T 126 3,389 6,621 4,252 619 176 49 9 3 0 1 15,245
Links 3,389 13,242 12,756 2,476 880 294 63 24 0 11 33,135
The most common number of external links per profile is 2, 3, and 1 respectively. Of concern at this time are the 126 profiles (0.83%) for which there is not yet an external link, as all but one represent elected persons about whom nothing is known.

Profiles with family relations (13.93%)**
Alive    Dead
Category
M F X Total
T T T T
Elected 266 1,529 1,795 101 36 137 0 0 0 367 1,565 1,932
Unelected 29 114 143 20 9 29 0 0 0 49 123 172
Perennial 5 11 16 2 1 3 0 0 0 7 12 19
Total 300 1,654 1,954 123 46 169 0 0 0 423 1,700 2,123
** Percentage of full profiles with at least one family relation

So far, 2,986 connections have been found and noted (parents, grandparents, siblings, cousins, spouses, domestic partners, etc.). A connection between two persons results in a pair of connection records in this database — for example: (1) would indicate that Robert was the father of Maurice and (2) would indicate that Maurice was the son of Robert.

So if your Uncle Charlie, or your great-grandfather, or even you ran in a federal or provincial election, if should take you only a few seconds to find the details now that you have arrived on this website!



© 2022 Maurice Y. Michaud :: PoliCan.ca
Pub.:  5 Jun 2022 18:20
Rev.:  2 Aug 2022 18:42 (but data revised dynamically)