Electoral history of Walter Scott

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Walter Scott
First Premier of Saskatchewan
1905 to 1916

This article is the Electoral history of Walter Scott, the first Premier of the Canadian province of Saskatchewan, serving from 1905 to 1916.

Scott was Saskatchewan's second longest-serving Premier, serving one continuous term. He led the Saskatchewan Liberal Party in three general elections, winning all three with majority governments before retiring. He was the first of six Liberal Premiers to date. He was succeeded by William Melville Martin.

Prior to the creation of Saskatchewan in 1905, Scott was a Member of Parliament in the federal House of Commons, elected in the general elections of 1900 and 1904.

Summary

Scott was the second-longest serving Premier of Saskatchewan, with one consecutive term, from September 6, 1905 to October 20, 1916.[1] He was in office for a total of Template:Age in years and days.

Saskatchewan was created out of the south-eastern portion of the North-West Territories by a federal statute, the Saskatchewan Act, which came into force on September 1, 1905. Upon the creation of the province and before the first Legislative Assembly was elected, Scott was appointed as Premier by the first Lieutenant Governor of Saskatchewan, Amédée E. Forget, on the advice of Prime Minister Sir Wilfrid Laurier. Scott in turn set up the first ministry of the new province and led it into the general election on December 13, 1905. His opponent in that election was Frederick Haultain, who had been the Premier of the North-West Territories prior to the creation of Saskatchewan.

Scott led the Saskatchewan Liberal Party in three general elections, winning majority governments in all three (1905, 1908, 1912). He is one of only four Saskatchewan premiers to win three or more majority governments, the others being Tommy Douglas, Allan Blakeney, and Brad Wall. Scott and the Liberals won over 50% of the popular vote in each of the three general elections, and also increased their number of seats in each of the three elections. The only other Saskatchewan premier to match this feat was Brad Wall.

Scott stood for election to the provincial Legislative Assembly three times. In the 1905 election he was elected to the electoral constituency of Lumsden. In the elections of 1908 and 1912 he was elected in the constituency of Swift Current.[2]

Scott retired in 1916, due to a combination of health issues and allegations of corruption in the Liberal government.[3] He was succeeded as Liberal leader and Premier by William Melville Martin.[1]

Prior to entering provincial politics, Scott was a Member of Parliament in the federal House of Commons, as a member of the Liberal Party of Canada. He was elected twice, in 1900 and 1904, in the riding of Assiniboia West. He resigned his Commons seat in 1905 to enter provincial politics in the newly-formed province of Saskatchewan. He served in the Commons for a total of four years, nine months and twenty-two days.[4]

Saskatchewan general elections, 1905 to 1912

Scott led the Liberal Party in three general elections (1905, 1908, and 1911), winning majority governments each time, with increased seat counts in each election.

1905 General election

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Saskatchewan came into being on September 1, 1905, when the Saskatchewan Act was proclaimed in force by the federal government. Since there was no Legislature in existence, Scott was appointed Premier by the Lieutenant Governor of Saskatchewan, on the advice of the Prime Minister of Canada, Sir Wilfrid Laurier. He formed the first ministry and led it in the first general election, on December 13, 1905.

Scott's opponent in that election was Frederick Haultain, who had been the Premier of the North-West Territories immediately prior to the creation of Saskatchewan. Haultain ran on a platform of provincial rights. He had favoured creating one large province, not the two separate provinces of Saskatchewan and Alberta. He also had opposed the federal government's decision to keep control of the natural resources in the province. In response, Scott campaigned in defence of the constitutional structure of the new province. He won a clear majority in the Legislative Assembly.

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Saskatchewan General Election: December 13, 1905
Party Leaders Seats Won Popular Vote Popular Vote Percentage
Liberal Walter Scott1 16 17,812 52.2%
Frederick Haultain2 9 16,184 47.5%
Independent 0 94 0.3%
Total 25 34,090 100.0%
Source: Elections Saskatchewan - Elections Results - 1905

1 Premier of Saskatchewan when election was called; Premier after the election.
2 Premier of the North-West Territories prior to creation of Saskatchewan; Leader of the Opposition after the election.

1908 General election

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Scott again led the Liberal Party in the second general election, on August 14, 1908. Haultain was again his opponent, for the Provincial Rights Party. Scott was returned to office.

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Saskatchewan General Election: August 14, 1908
Party Leaders Seats Won Popular Vote Popular Vote Percentage
Liberal Walter Scott1 27 29,807 50.8%
Frederick Haultain2 14 28,099 47.9%
Independent-Liberal 0 394 0.7%
Independent 0 387 0.7%
Total 41 58,687 100.1%3
Source: Elections Saskatchewan - Elections Results - 1908

1 Premier when election was called; Premier after the election.
2 Leader of the Opposition when election was called; Leader of the Opposition after the election.
3 Rounding error.

1912 General election

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Scott again led the Liberal Party in the third general election, on July 11, 1912. The Provincial Rights Party by this time had re-named itself the Conservative Party of Saskatchewan, now led by Wellington Willoughby. Scott was returned to office.

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Saskatchewan General Election: July 11, 1912
Party Leaders Seats Won Popular Vote Popular Vote Percentage
Liberal Walter Scott1 45 50,004 57.0%
Wellington Willoughby2 7 36,848 42.0%
Independent 1 934 1.1%
Vacant3 (1)
Total 54 87,786 100.1%4
Source: Elections Saskatchewan - Elections Results - 1912

1 Premier when election was called; Premier after the election.
2 Leader of the Opposition when election was called; Leader of the Opposition after the election.
3 The Legislative Assembly had 54 seats, but the election in Cumberland was declared void, resulting in a vacancy in the Assembly until a by-election was called on September 8, 1913.
4 Rounding error.

Saskatchewan constituency elections

Scott stood for election to the Legislative Assembly three times, in two different ridings. He was elected each time.[2]

1905 General election: Lumsden

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Saskatchewan General Election, 1905: Lumsden
Party Candidate Popular Vote %
Liberal Yes Walter Scott 913 56.6%
Provincial Rights Frederick Clarke Tate 701 43.4%
Total 1,614 100.0%
Source: Saskatchewan Archives – Election Results by Electoral Division: Lumsden

Yes Elected.

1908 General election: Swift Current

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Saskatchewan General Election, 1908: Swift Current
Party Candidate Popular Vote %
Liberal Yes Walter Scott 699 63.5%
Provincial Rights William Oswald Smyth 401 36.5%
Total 1,100 100.0%
Source: Saskatchewan Archives – Election Results by Electoral Division: Swift Current

Yes Elected.

1912 General election: Swift Current

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Saskatchewan General Election, 1912: Swift Current
Party Candidate Popular Vote %
Liberal Yes X Walter Scott 768 57.6%
Conservative Frank G. Forster 565 42.4%
Total 1,333 100.0%
Source: Saskatchewan Archives – Election Results by Electoral Division: Swift Current

Yes Elected.
X Incumbent.

Federal constituency elections, 1900 and 1904

Scott stood for election to the House of Commons twice, in the riding of Assiniboia West, North-West Territories. He was elected both times.[4]

1900 General election: Assiniboia West

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Federal Election, 1900: Assiniboia West, North-West Territories
Party Candidate Popular Vote %
Liberal Yes Walter Scott 2,093 52.9%
Conservative X Nicholas Flood Davin 1,861 47.1%
Total 3,954 100.0%
Source: Library of Parliament: Assinboia West

Yes Elected.
X Incumbent.

1904 General election: Assiniboia West

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Federal Election, 1904: Assiniboia West, North-West Territories
Party Candidate Popular Vote %
Liberal Yes X Walter Scott 3,647 56.0%
Conservative George Malcolm Annable 2,865 44.0%
Total 6,512 100.0%
Source: Library of Parliament: Assinboia West

Yes Elected.
X Incumbent.

References

External links