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What could Canada's signing of the Trans-Pacific Partnership mean for the federal election?

Last Updated Oct 5, 2015 at 12:49 pm PDT

(iStock Photo)

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – What could the signing of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal mean for the parties competing for your vote in this month’s federal election?

It comes down to how this deal affects you, says UBC political scientist Richard Johnston.

He says this could give NDP leader Tom Mulcair greater support from auto workers and dairy farmers, but some voters may be hesitant.

“There is this larger question of ‘Can we afford not to be a part of this, even with its disadvantages?'” says Johnston.

Given the Conservative party negotiated a better deal for Canadian dairy farmers than expected, Johnston says that could also help Stephen Harper.

“I expect the Conservatives will advertise it that way,” says Johnston, who was surprised at the extent to which the deal protects our dairy industry. “It’s very striking.”

Johnston suggests Trudeau has been smart to largely stay out of the debate over the deal, suggesting Mulcair’s promise to pull out of the agreement may come across as too risky in the eyes of average voters.