The original purpose of the ban was to prevent Western Canadian voters from knowing results from the Atlantic Provinces before casting their ballots. At the time, there was a four hour difference between the closing of the polls in Atlantic Canada and in British Columbia. To address this gap, Parliament introduced staggered voting hours in 1996 which ensures that the outcome of any general election cannot be known before polls close anywhere in Canada.
“We’re in the 21st century,” added Minister Uppal. “The ban, which was enacted in 1938, does not make sense with the widespread use of social media and other modern communications technology.”