The non-voting bloc won. Or might I say, they almost certainly didn’t get what they wanted, or didn’t try for what they wanted.
The federal riding of Wascana is the only Liberal seat in both Alberta and Saskatchewan, and will probably remain that way for the next 5 years. The results of it are interesting, as are many of Canada’s 308 elections, because the non-voting adults could have singularly elected a different candidate without changing other voters’ votes.
Voter turnout: 38,777 of 57,034 registered electors (68.0%) = 18,257 non-voters
Liberal Ralph Goodale 15,842 40.9%
Conservative Ian Shields 14,292 36.9%
NDP Marc Spooner 7,689 19.8%
Green Party Bill Clary 954 2.5%
My critics may say, “Yeah, but Goodale [or insert your “winning” MP in place of his name] got the single most votes of those who ran.” My critics would technically be correct, but it’s also technically correct to say that he got the most votes of the available candidates, who all failed to suitably impress at least half of the electorate enough to mark an X beside his name.
As Stephen Harper said before the election campaign, “Losers don’t get to form coalitions“.
Bonus math: If we assume the same percentage of stay-at-home-voters support Goodale, he still only has (.409 * 18257) = 7467 more votes, giving him 23,309 of 57,034 registered voters (which is still 40.9% in favour of him). Goodale’s true popular vote percentage is 33% if we divide his vote by those eligible.