Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper visited Governor General David Johnston this morning to request Canada's 40th Parliament be dissolved. Emerging from Rideau Hall just after 9 a.m., Harper announced a federal election will take place May 2.
The minority government was defeated yesterday on a non-confidence motion that said the government was in contempt of Parliament. The Liberal motion was passed with a vote of 156 to 145, marking the first time a government has been found in contempt.
Today, Governor General David Johnston approved Harper's request to dissolve Parliament and call an election.
Harper lashed out at political opponents for bringing Canadians into another election and publicly accused rivals of planning to form a coalition government.
"On May 2, we will choose between stable national government and a reckless coalition; between a low-tax plan for growth and a high-tax agenda that will stall our recovery, kill jobs and set families back," Harper said.
Moments before Harper spoke, however, Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff said he had no plans for a coalition with the NDP and Bloc Quebecois. Ignatieff did say he would work on an issue-by-issue basis with other parties if he wins the election.
“Whoever leads the party that wins the most seats on election day should be called on to form the government,” Ignatieff said in a statement, issued prior to the May 2 election announcement.
This will be Harper's fourth run at a majority government.