If polls are to be believed, Canada is about to be invaded
Whether you live above or below the Canadian/American Border, whether you consider yourself a liberal or conservative, you may have threatened to move you and your family to the other side of the border at some point in the last ten to twenty years.
These types of threats were quite evident during the campaigns of American President George W. Bush and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper. Conservatives/Republicans have a knack for instilling fear in people. That fear is magnified tenfold during an election year as it’s how they get elected in the first place.
Liberals aren’t the only would be political refugees of course. Bill O’Reilly said if Sanders wins, he’s moving to Ireland. In 2012, supporters of Mitt Romney said they would move to Australia if Barack Obama won again. Conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh said he would leave for Costa Rica if the Affordable Care Act passed. At least Republicans have the decency to stay out of Canada.
Regardless, every four years in the States, and every election cycle in Canada, the fear takes hold, people panic, the election takes place and then nothing really happens. The citizenry stay in their respective countries and fight it out, with a very brief spike in emigration, if any.
As an outsider looking in, I have to wonder if 2016 is going to be filled with more of the same empty threatening rhetoric or if people are starting to mean what they say, especially young people. This is after all an election year that contains the most hated candidate in history as well as the second. A whopping 34 per cent of Americans are set to pack their bags in anticipation of one result or another.
Searches for “Move to Canada” were higher than at any time in Google history after Super Tuesday, but it didn’t really end there. Back in March, an Ipsos poll, conducted exclusively for Global News found that a whopping nineteen per cent of American respondents would “consider moving to Canada” if Republican presidential contender Donald J. Trump were to win in November. The number was especially high among young respondents: 28 per cent of those aged 18-34.
Nineteen per cent is obviously an extremely high number, not surprising given that Trump is an extremely hated candidate. Still, that number represents roughly sixty millions Americans. If they all followed through and moved, the population of Canada would practically double.
Now, obviously that isn’t about to happen, but what if just one per cent of them actually tried? That’s still six hundred thousand America refugees. Remember, Canada recently took in more than twenty-five thousand Syrian Refugees and that was considered a lot.
Let’s take a look at the other side, Hillary Clinton. According to the same Ipsos poll, fifteen per cent of Americans would “consider moving to Canada” if she wins the presidency. Doesn’t make much sense when you consider she’s much further to the right than Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, but then again many Americans aren’t very bright (i.e. Trump).
It’s a good thing Trump and Clinton aren’t on the same ticket because all that American body heat north of the border would melt the polar ice caps.
If Hillary wins, Americans will likely stay put. Most conservatives don’t even bother to leave their state, let alone leave their country. However, with a Trump victory, we will likely see another spike in U.S. citizens granted permanent resident status in Canada just like the year immediately following Bush’s re-election. The only question is how much?
If Trump wins, I’ll consider myself a charitable guy. My doors are always open, hell I’m Canadian so you know they’re even unlocked. If Hillary wins however, I’ll have to get ole Justin to build a wall to keep you all out.