Conservatives didn't fare well in byelections: Experts

Canada's Prime Minister Stephen Harper takes a 'selfie' with his wife Laureen during Canada Day...

Canada's Prime Minister Stephen Harper takes a 'selfie' with his wife Laureen during Canada Day celebrations on Parliament Hill in Ottawa July 1, 2014. Canadians are celebrating their country's 147th birthday. (REUTERS/Chris Wattie)

Jessica Hume, National Bureau

, Last Updated: 6:18 PM ET

OTTAWA - Though the NDP lost a coveted seat to the Liberals in Monday's byelections, the reigning Conservatives lost the greatest proportion of the popular vote, political observers note.

Results from Monday's four byelections were largely unsurprising with Conservatives holding on to their two seats in Alberta and, as expected, not making gains in the two Toronto ridings.

The highlight was the gains made Justin Trudeau's Liberal party.

The Grits stole a seat from the NDP - the Trinity Spadina riding in Toronto previously held by the NDP's Olivia Chow, widow of former party leader Jack Layton - and hung on to another in east-end Toronto. They also saw a surprising rise in popularity in the two Alberta ridings up for grabs.

The results don't bode well for leader Tom Mulcair and his NDP, which Nelson Wiseman, a political scientist at the University of Toronto, says has a precarious handle on its official opposition status.


Photos