Monday, June 30, 2014
Liberal Adam Vaughan wins in Trinity-Spadina
NDP candidate Joe Cressy was unable to keep orange a riding that former NDP MP Olivia Chow won easily in the 2011 general election.
Conservative candidate Benjamin Sharma was a distant third place, just ahead of Green Party candidate Camille Labchuk.
Vaughan, who resigned his seat on Toronto Council in May shortly after gaining the Liberal nomination in Trinity-Spadina, was ahead all night with more than 50% of the popular vote at deadline.
The Liberal win echoed the results of the general provincial election on June 12 that saw an Ontario NDP incumbent lose to a Liberal competitor, and raises questions about the NDP’s continuing relevance with downtown Torontonians as provincial and federal Liberal Leaders appear to move to the left on the political spectrum.
Over the years, Trinity-Spadina has switched back and forth between the Liberals and the NDP.
Olivia Chow had held the riding since 2006, taking it from the Liberals, but resigned in March to run for the Toronto mayor’s job.
Chow had won the riding with more than double the votes of her nearest competitor, Liberal candidate Christine Innes, in the 2011 general election, capturing almost 55% of the 65,611 ballots cast.
Voter turnout on Monday appeared to be low as predicted.
Byelection day may have come on a quiet Monday squeezed between the weekend and a statutory summer holiday but there was nothing sleepy about a campaign that pitted human rights activist Cressy against high profile former Toronto Councillor Vaughan.
The Liberal campaign got off to a sloppy start when Trudeau blocked Innes’ candidacy and she slapped him with a defamation suit.
The campaign was marred with vandalism of approximately $6,000 worth of Cressy election signs, including one on the candidate’s own front yard.
The pair clashed over the Line 9 pipeline through Toronto with Cressy accusing Vaughan of misleading voters by suggesting Trudeau was opposed to it.
Vaughan emphasized his local roots as a journalist, and the child of one of the city’s leading activist families.
Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne attended a rally in support of Vaughan Saturday, while NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair was in town to back Cressy.
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