After an eventful session in Parliament, MPs are taking a summer break, which makes it the perfect time to look back at which issues topped the #cdnpoli discussion on Twitter during the past six months.

#cdnpoli generated a lot of Twitter traffic during this Parliamentary session. We analyzed tweets issued between January 1, 2013 and today using Sysomos Heartbeat. During the first six months of 2012 the total number of tweets tagged with #cdnpoli was 900,991. This year, the number of tweets jumped 82% to 1,636,543 (9,627 tweets/day average).

The following ten issues received the most mentions in all the chatter:

  1. First Nations
  2. Duffy-Wright/Wallin/Senate
  3. Oil and pipelines
  4. Election (this includes byelections and mentions of BC’s recent election)
  5. Economy
  6. Natural Resources
  7. Crime
  8. Jobs
  9. Science
  10. Tax

It’s no surprise Idle No More (INM) dominated the #cdnpoli chatter. The movement, which began at the end of 2012, was the largest of its kind – the first pan-Canadian indigenous movement which spread all over the world. For a more in-depth analysis of INM’s progress over its first six months, please refer to Full Duplex’s recently published report Idle No More at Six Months.

The second most popular #cdnpoli issue during this session was the Senate expense scandal. In order to determine the number of tweets associated with this issue, we searched for tweets which were tagged with #cdnpoli and included mentions of Mike Duffy or Nigel Wright or Pamela Wallin or Senate expenses.  With the constant updates arising in regard to the scandal, the matter became a constant fixture in our daily #cdnpoli blog for several weeks.

Oil and pipelines has always made for a lively discussion on Twitter. In fact, oil and pipelines dominated #cdnpoli chatter last summer and was a regular fixture in the top six weekly issues well into the winter months. Individuals who tweeted about it appear to have very divided opinions.

And for the second year in a row, the most retweeted #cdnpoli tweet goes to Rick Mercer. Mercer’s May 18  tweet received 1,150 retweets and was favourited 286 times. The tweet said: “I think the most honourable thing for Harper to do at this point is to run, hide and avoid the public, I mean prorogue.. #cdnpoli”.

Justin Trudeau‘s June 5 tweet (“RT if you agree: it’s time to raise the bar on transparency in Ottawa – http://bit.ly/jtsoapbox  #cdnpoli”) receives honourable mention with 793 retweets and 58 favourites.

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