TORONTO (AP) — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is heading to the governor general’s residence Sunday and is expected to dissolve Parliament and trigger an early election as he seeks to capitalize on Canada being one of the most fully vaccinated countries in the world.
Trudeau’s itinerary’s shows he will visit the governor general, who holds a mostly ceremonial position representing Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II as head of state, on Sunday morning. Trudeau will announce the election for Sept. 20, an official familiar with the plans told The Associated Press.
Trudeau is seeking to win a majority of seats in Parliament. His Liberal party fell just short of that two years ago and must rely on the opposition to pass legislation.
The election comes as Canada is in the midst of a fourth wave of COVID-19 cases, driven by the delta variant of the coronavirus.
Trudeau is less personally popular than he once was but his government’s handling of the pandemic has been widely viewed as a success. After a slow start Canada now has enough vaccine for every citizen and his government spent hundreds of billions to prop up the economy amid lockdowns.
Trudeau, the son of the late Liberal Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau, became the second youngest prime minister in Canadian history when he was first elected with a majority of seats in Parliament in 2015.
The Liberal’s victory ended almost 10 years of Conservative Party government in Canada, but scandals combined with high expectations have damaged Trudeau’s standing.
His father served as prime minister from 1968 to 1984 with a short interruption and is one of Canada’s best know politicians in other countries.