2014 Hilary Weston Writers' Trust  Prize for Nonfiction Finalist

Shopping for Votes

Susan Delacourt
Shopping for Votes: How Politicians Choose Us and We Choose Them

Douglas & McIntyre

Susan Delacourt

Jury Citation

Shopping for Votes is a revelation of how political marketing works. With ace investigative research and insight, Susan Delacourt lays bare the history and machinations of the branding, niche market, intuition, and gut feeling approach to viewing voters as consumers. Her unfolding of this troubling evolution in Canadian politics is rendered in clear prose, and her judgments are based in reasoned argument. Shopping for Votes is a must for anyone concerned about informed consensus and a democratic national vision for Canada.

About the Book

Where once politics was seen as a public service, increasingly it’s seen as a business, and citizens are the customers. Susan Delacourt takes readers into the world of Canada’s top political marketers, from the 1950s to the present, explaining how parties slice and dice their platforms for different audiences and how they manage the media. The current system divides the country into “niche” markets and abandons the hard political work of knitting together broad consensus or national vision. Little wonder then, that most Canadians have checked out of the political process. Refreshingly non-partisan, Shopping for Votes offers a new narrative for understanding political culture in Canada.

About the Author

Susan Delacourt is a senior political writer with the Toronto Star who has been covering Canada’s capital for more than two decades. She has previously published books on subjects such as the Charlottetown Accord, Shaughnessy Cohen, and Paul Martin. A regular commentator on CTV and CBC Television, Delacourt has been recognized for her political writing with the Charles Lynch Award from the Canadian Parliamentary Press Gallery and the Hyman Solomon Award for Excellence in Public Policy Journalism. She was a finalist for the John W. Dafoe Book Prize earlier this year. Delacourt lives in Ottawa.




Woodcock Fund



Shaughnessy Cohen Prize for Political Writing


September 19 for books published between June 20 and September 18, 2018


Hilary Weston Writers' Trust Prize for Nonfiction
and Rogers Writers' Trust Fiction Prize


July 18 for books published between May 16 and Sept 30, 2018


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