Harper and his government have recently pushed through the controversial Bill C-51 which has already on the way to court challenges for its approach to civil rights in the country.
The upcoming election will make for interesting times. There are two more major parties in the contest, the NDP headed by Thomas Mulcair and the Liberals headed by Justin Trudeau. The Green Party has people running but few elected. The Partie Quebecois only runs candidates in Quebec.
While political parties in Canada tend to be left of those in the USA, in recent years Harper seems to be veering to the right further than many Canadians are comfortable with. The Liberals occupy about the centre and the NDP slightly to the left. Canada has always allowed any party to run for office. Even in the paranoid 50s the Communist Party participated in federal and provincial elections. Very few of their candidates were successful.
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on Vancouver Island, Canada