Party Primaries in Canada

Authored by: Scott Pruysers , Anthony Sayers

Routledge Handbook of Primary Elections

Print publication date:  February  2018
Online publication date:  February  2018

Print ISBN: 9781138684089
eBook ISBN: 9781315544182
Adobe ISBN:


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Personnel selection (i.e., leadership and candidate selection) is among the most important tasks that political parties perform (Kirchheimer 1966; Sartori 1976). Until very recently, parties around the world relied on relatively exclusive selectorates, like the parliamentary party group (PPG) in the case of leadership selection, to make these important intra-party decisions (Pilet and Cross 2014; Kenig 2009). In the last three decades, however, parties in many Western democracies have engaged in an intra-party democracy revolution of sorts, adopting more inclusive and participatory selection procedures, including party primaries. Canadian parties are somewhat anomalous in this regard and have used primaries to select both legislative candidates and party leaders for decades (Cross et al. 2016; Pruysers and Cross 2016).

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