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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

- Page 42

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - September 27, 1972, Lethbridge, Alberta 42 THE UTHBRIDOI HiRMD Wddnoiday, Soplnmbcr 17, Iv72 THE EXI'LAINM) Who can be a candidate? campaign By TOM MITCHF.U, OTTAWA (CP1 The rule of thumb is that if you ran vote in a federal election, you probably can be a candidate. The reverse of it is a sure you can't vote, you can't run. For the next federal elec- tion, the voting age. and thus the qualifying age for candi- dates, has been dropped to 18 years from 21 under a revised Canada Elections Act passed by Parliament in 1970 If you arc of age, a Cana- dian 'citizen and lived in Can- ada when the election was railed, you meel Ihe general qualifications. So do British subjects who have not Iwcome Canadian citizens but were el- igible to vote at the last fed- eral election in 1968. a privi- lege that is being eliminated by 1975 under the revised act. But the would-be occupant of one of the 264 House of Commons seats faces a few more restrictions Ihan are set [or the people who vote (or him. SOME AltE BARRED A member of the regular armed forces in peacetime cannot be a candidate, for ex- ample. Neither can sitting members of provincial legisla- tures or the councils in the Yukon and Northwest Territo- ries, anyone holding contracts with the federal government under which he is paid out of public funds, sheriffs, clerks of the peace, Crown attorneys and certain federal public servants appointed by Ihe Crown or Ihe government. Holding of government summ- it ics or debentures is not con- sidered a contract for the pur- pose of these restrictions. Although barred from can- didacy, all these people have the vole. Resignation from a prohibited position of course clears the way for such per- sons to run. A nomination as candidate must he filed wilh a reluming officer by the p.m. local standard time on the 21st day before Ihe elec- tion in most ridings, exactly a week earlier in 21 of the coun- try's large ridings with scat- tered populations. MUST HAVE WITNESS With the nomination a can- didate must include signa- tures of 25 voters in his riding and a witness must accom- pany him lo swear they are the signatures of qualified vot- ers. A deposit in cash or certified cheque also is re- quired as a deterrent to .the frivolous. The returning offi- cer sends it to the federal treasury. If the candidate wins gets half as many votes as the winner the de- posit is returned. Otherwise it is forfeit. A candidate's personal spending, for hotel and travel expenses for example, is lim- ited by law to For the handling of all other election funds he must name an official agent. While a candidate can be Ifi years old Ins agent might have lo 21. The law says the agent must be "capable of coloring inlo contracts" in whatever province the liding is located. Some provinces have reduced this age lo 18 but in olhers it slill is 21. A candidate may withdraw his or her nomination up to 8 local standard time on the IBth day before voting day by filing, in person, a declara- tion before Ihe returning offi- cer. NAMK LEFT OFF If ballots have not been printed yet, Ihe name is left off. If they have, notice of withdrawal" is posted in every polling place in the riding and each voter Ls told of (lie with- drawal in getting a ballot. Tlxi deposit is forfeit in any withdrawal. Persons who do not vote, and thus cannot be candi- dates, are the chief electoral officer and assistant, return- ing officers in each riding who vote in case of a tie, fed- erally-appointed judges, pris- oners in penal institutions, persons restrained of liberty or deprived of management of their property of menial illness and persons qualified from voting because of corrupt or illegal electoral practices. Conviction for any corrupt practice prohibits a person qualifying as a candidate for seven years. A five-year ban is imposed on those found guilty of illegal practices. You'll have a little leeway when row mark your ballot Here's liow vote remains a secret By TOM MITCHELL OTTAWA