Election 2015 timeline
Bloc Quebecois Leader Gilles Duceppe, Liberals Leader Justin Trudeau, Conservative Leader Stephen Harper, NDP Leader Tom Mulcair and Green Party Leader Elizabeth May appear in this combination photo. (THE CANADIAN PRESS)
The Canadian Press
Published Friday, October 16, 2015 1:50PM EDT
Last Updated Friday, October 16, 2015 5:50PM EDT
Aug. 2: Prime Minister Stephen Harper announces he has asked the Governor General to dissolve Parliament, triggering a campaign for the Oct. 19 election billed as one of the longest -- and most costly -- in modern Canadian political history.
"Canadians will make a critical decision about the direction of our country, a decision with real consequences, a decision about who has the proven experience today to keep our economy strong and our country safe." -- Harper.
Aug. 6: Harper's economic and environmental records come under fire during the televised Maclean's debate as NDP Leader Tom Mulcair, Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau and Green party Leader Elizabeth May took aim at the Conservative leader's nine-year tenure.
"You have completely become disconnected from the reality that people are facing right across this country." -- Trudeau to Harper.
Aug. 12: Harper's former chief of staff, Nigel Wright, begins his testimony at the criminal trial of Sen. Mike Duffy, telling court he informed Harper that Duffy agreed to repay his impugned expense claims, but did not disclose there was a plan afoot for the party to foot the bill.
"I did not believe Mr. Duffy's expenses could be justified and I thought he should repay them. And Mr. Wright was working with Mr. Duffy to make sure he did repay them. That's what we were told was going to happen." -- Harper.
Aug. 17: With the Duffy courtroom drama playing out in Ottawa, Harper faces pointed questions about his current chief of staff, Ray Novak, after it emerged he was included on the email chain about Wright's plan to repay the senator's expenses.
"Mr. Harper has not been truthful with Canadians. That has become abundantly clear from the emails that have been released and Canadians deserve better." -- Mulcair.
Aug. 22: Tory supporter Earl Cowan becomes angry with reporters on the Conservative campaign trail after they asked Harper about what was happening inside the Prime Minister's Office during the Mike Duffy affair.
"You're making an issue out of Duffy; he's a nothing. Harper has produced good government ... I think you're a piece of lying s....t and your media with you ... go stuff yourself." -- Cowan
Aug. 27: Trudeau declares that a Liberal government would run deficits of up to $10-billion a year for three years until 2019 to help kick-start the economy.
"Our plan will be the most significant new investment in our infrastructure in Canadian history." -- Trudeau.
Aug. 27: An animated Harper uses a 'teeny-tiny' finger gesture to mock Trudeau's deficit plan.
"I guess it turns out the budget doesn't balance itself after all, but he'll run, he says, a modest deficit -- a tiny deficit, so small you can hardly see the deficit -- that's what he said." -- Harper.
Sept. 1: Statistics Canada says the Canadian economy shrank for the second quarter of 2015, putting the country into its first technical recession in six years. The agency also reports Canada's GDP climbed in June by 0.5 per cent after shrinking over the first five months.
"The Canadian economy as a whole is now growing, according to the June figures ... that is the reality of the situation -- it is good news." -- Harper.
Sept. 2: After campaigning with Paul Martin, Justin Trudeau says the former prime minister made the right decision when he slashed transfer payments to the provinces to balance the books. Trudeau, however, says he won't follow the same path.
"In the 90s, the Liberal government at the time inherited the situation where our debt to GDP ratio was among the highest in developed countries ... right now, we have a very different situation where for 10 years, even though we have a very good debt to GDP ratio, we can't seem to create growth." -- Trudeau.
Sept. 3: After the photo of three-year-old Alan Kurdi -- a dead boy found washed up on Turkish beach -- circulates around the world, Harper says Canada needs to keep fighting Islamic militants, the root cause of the suffering in Syria and Iraq.
"We need to help people who are actually there and can't get away. And part of the way we need to help them is to stop the awful violence that is being directed at them, displacing them and killing them." -- Harper.
Sept. 4: Harper continues to face calls on the campaign trail to speed up the processing of Syrian refugees.
"When I hear the answers from the prime minister, saying, 'Well, more war is the solution,' well, no amount of military action would have saved that child on that (Turkish) beach." -- Mulcair.
Sept. 14: Harper hits the campaign trail armed with good news: Finance Department released figures showing a $1.9-billion surplus for the 2014-2015 fiscal year.
"I see zero to little risk that we will have anything other than a surplus for a second year in a row based on the trajectory that we are on." -- Harper.
Sept. 16: On the eve of the economic debate in Calgary, the NDP releases a breakdown of its economic plans and promises to boost federal spending on health care beyond what Conservative budgets have forecast.
"We have committed to continue the six per cent escalator, but I do want to be clear that some of that six per cent will include announcements on health care that our leader Tom Mulcair has already made this week." -- Ontario NDP candidate Peggy Nash.
Sept. 17: During the economic debate, Mulcair rips into the government's plan to ship Canadian crude to the U.S. Gulf Coast, arguing he wants to keep jobs in Canada instead of sending them south of the border.
"Forty-thousand Canadian jobs would be exported to the United States with Keystone XL ... that's not our figure, that's the government of Canada's figure under Mr. Harper's Conservatives. I want to create those 40,000 jobs in Canada let's add value to our natural resources here." -- Mulcair.
Sept. 19: Facing much scrutiny, the government says it will speed up the processing of Syrian refugee applications in an effort to issue "thousands more" visas before the end of this year.
"We looked carefully at our capacity. We looked carefully at the steps and procedures to keep Canada and Canadians safe. And we've come up with a much accelerated plan that will bring 10,000 Syrian refugees here by September 2016." -- Immigration Minister Chris Alexander.
Sept. 23: During a speech in Montreal prior to the campaign's first French-language debate, Mulcair tries to blunt expected attacks from rivals over his opposition to the government's ban on face coverings at citizenship ceremonies.
"I understand that many view the niqab as a symbol of the oppression of women ... and on that, let me be clear: No one has the right to tell a woman what she must -- or must not -- wear." -- Mulcair.
Sept. 28: Trudeau defends his father's political record during the Munk debate in Toronto, which is focused on foreign policy issues.
"Throughout this campaign, in indirect references and direct references, both of these gentlemen have, at various points, attacked my father. Let me say very clearly, I'm incredibly proud to be Pierre Elliott Trudeau's son. And I'm incredibly lucky to be raised with those Liberal values." -- Trudeau.
Oct. 2: Conservative candidate and Immigration Minister Chris Alexander reminds Canadians about the "Zero Tolerance for Barbaric Cultural Practices Act," and promises more government resources if Conservatives are re-elected, including an RCMP tip line.
"We need to stand up for our values ... need to do that in citizenship ceremonies. We need to do that to protect women and girls from forced marriage and other barbaric practices." -- Alexander.
Oct. 6: Harper tells CBC News a Conservative government would consider banning public servants from wearing the niqab.
"That's a matter we are going to examine ... Quebec, as you know, has legislation on this and we are looking at that legislation." -- Harper.
Oct. 8: Harper says the Prime Minister's Office temporarily halted the flow of Syrian refugees into Canada last June to verify that the most vulnerable people were being selected while ensuring security.
"Our government has adopted a generous approach to the admission of refugees while ensuring the selection of the most vulnerable people and keeping our country safe and secure." -- Harper.
Oct. 15: Trudeau defends the resignation of Liberal campaign co-chair Dan Gagnier following a Canadian Press report that reveals he sent lobbying advice about the controversial Energy East pipeline to officials at TransCanada Corp.
"He acted in an inappropriate way a few days ago and when we found out about it, we sat down with him and he chose to do the responsible thing and step down from our campaign.... It's a way of demonstrating the fact that we take ethical standards and responsibilities extremely seriously." -- Trudeau.