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Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is poised to trigger a snap election two years ahead of schedule, betting that high vaccination rates and a post-pandemic rebound will help him prolong and strengthen his grip on power. Trudeau, 49, is eyeing September for what would be his third election, sources said. He first won a majority in 2015. But in a federal vote two years ago, after decades-old blackface pictures surfaced, Trudeau came up short of a majority, forcing him to depend on opposition parties to pass legislation. The Liberals need to pick up just over a dozen more seats in the 338-seat House of Commons to be able to govern on their own. A fall vote would be “an election of inches, not giant steps. We’re looking at 15 seats or so,” said Allan Tupper, professor of political science at University of British Columbia at Vancouver. “Failure would be not to win a majority … and repeat the status quo,” Tupper said. If Trudeau were to get only another minority, it would almost certainly lead to questions about whether the party needs a fresh face, analysts said.

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