Former MP's election complaint could be decided May 2
Former Liberal MP Borys Wrzesnewskyj fighting 2011 election result
Former Liberal MP Borys Wrzesnewskyj says he expects his court case contesting the results of the last federal election could be resolved May 2, one year after Canadians went to the polls.
Wrzesnewskyj, who'd been an MP since 2004, lost his Etobicoke Centre seat in Toronto by 26 votes to Conservatve MP Ted Opitz. The race was so tight Elections Canada recounted the ballots, but the results upheld Opitz's win.
While there were a number of reports on May 2, 2011, about disrupted voting at a polling location at a seniors' centre, Wrzesnewskyj has focused his case on a number of voters who didn't have proof they lived in the riding and had to have people vouch for them. He said he did so in order to speed up the case.
"They [the allegations] were of a scope and a number that this could have dragged on for years. We made a few decisions — to narrow the scope down to 10 polls to show what was taking place," Wrzesnewskyj told the CBC's Leslie MacKinnon.
The court case begins April 23 and Wrzesnewskyj and his lawyers expect the judge could rule on May 2.
Wrzesnewskyj alleges in an application filed in Ontario Superior Court that there were "widespread incidents of mistake and error, voter intimidation and active voter interference" that contributed to the final result and that the number of irregularities is bigger than the 26-vote difference between him and Opitz.
Former chief electoral officerJean-Pierre Kingsley says election day registering isn't terribly unusual. He points to one Saskatchewan riding where the number of registered voters more than doubled on election day in 2006.
"Concerns were raised about this. Elections Canada looked at them all and everyone was properly registered," he told CBC's James Fitz-Morris.
Kingsley also remembers a Toronto riding in the same election where 10,000 people registered to vote on election day. He said a lengthy investigation found only four people who may have voted in the wrong place.
If Wrzesnewskyj proves his case, the judge will throw out the results and Etobicoke Centre will have a byelection.