by Maurice Y. Michaud (he/him)
Just as the people who vote are at the heart of every election, the people who run for office are at the heart of PoliCan. In fact, there are 68,798 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. As a result, PoliCan is very likely the only website where you can obtain, in under 10 seconds and one mouse click, the complete list of the members of Parliament since 1867.
These tables summarize how many unique names are recorded in PoliCan, 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.
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 sets PoliCan apart from other websites 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 35,551 links recorded so far to 32,471 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.
So if your Uncle Charlie, or your great-grandfather, or even you ran in a federal or provincial election, it should take you only a few seconds to find the details now that you have arrived on this website!