Jan. 23 is the likely date of an election that will be triggered when the three opposition parties vote to defeat the 17-month-old minority Liberal government tonight and force a nasty, eight-week winter election campaign, Liberal sources said yesterday.
Barring the unforeseen, division bells will summon MPs to the Commons at 6:30 this evening. The roll call on a no-confidence motion will begin 15 minutes later, with the outcome all but certain.
Following constitutional tradition, Mr. Martin will formally inform Governor-General Michaëlle Jean before the next scheduled sitting of the Commons -- tomorrow at 10 a.m. -- that he lost a confidence vote. He will ask her to issue election writs for all 308 ridings.
When Mr. Martin emerges from this private Rideau Hall ritual, Liberal sources say he will announce the election date is Jan. 23 and the first winter campaign in a quarter-century will be under way.
Bring it on!