Supreme Court will hear appeal on voting rights for long-term ex-pats

The Supreme Court of Canada will hear an appeal over the voting rights of Canadians who live outside the country for more than five years.

The case involves Canadian citizens who were denied ballots in the 2011 federal election on the grounds of their foreign residence.

The suit was filed by Gillian Frank of Toronto who has lived in the United States since 2001 and teaches at Princeton and Jamie Duong, who left Montreal for high school in Vermont and now works at Cornell University.

The Ontario Superior Court of Justice sided with the applicants, calling the relevant parts of the Canada Elections Act unconstitutional.

The Ontario Court of Appeal, however, overturned that in a split decision.

The Supreme Court, as usual, gave no reasons for deciding to hear the case.

Also on The Globe and Mail

Prisoners can vote, and yet I can’t: Canadian expats on not being able to cast a ballot
(The Globe and Mail)

Courtesy: The Globe And Mail

10 thoughts on “Supreme Court will hear appeal on voting rights for long-term ex-pats

  1. While I am not against expats voting, the problem is we don’t have a national election per se, rather we have 338 separate elections, i.e. each riding and since we don’t allow Canadians to vote in ridings they previously lived in, it would seem a bit hypocritical to let expats vote in a riding they don’t live in. A better solution is create an international constituency or even a few depending on the size like France and Italy do and that would allow expats to vote while at the same time ensure each person votes in the riding they actually live in.

  2. in-my-Gee, let me have a guess…….the­y will overturn it, as this progressive bunch of activists, pretending to be professional judges have on many cases. lets see…..the Niqab, the Metis, the Native lands……­ke this is going to go any other way. It is truly sad our courts cannot be neutral.

  3. These people care so much about Canada they’re above contributing anything to Canadian society. Except of course when it comes to electing a Government they don’t have to live with.

  4. I would expect the Supreme Court to rule that the right to vote is an attribute of citizenship, not residence.

  5. Why should someone living in The Bahamas, or some other shelter, to avoid taxes have the right to vote

  6. This court has ruled that citizens in prison have a right to vote, no matter what they are convicted for – it is hard to see the court not ruling for expats’ right to vote.

  7. Other countries expect their ex-pat citizens to vote. Italy sends ballots to dual citizens. The problem here is that if you don’t live in a riding, you probably shouldn’t vote in one, but maybe this is something that electoral reform will address. Perhaps there will be members at large in addition to members of ridings so that the seats won is more proportional to the percent of popular vote.
    It’s good that the Supreme Court is looking at the issue.

  8. Citizenship is the fundamental bond of an individual with the state. As long as someone holds Canadian citizenship, they have the right to vote in Canadian elections.

  9. Expats in many countries pay Canadian taxes on their CPP, OAS, RRIF and investment income. Why shouldn’t they have a vote ?

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