Y! Exclusive: Why did Harinder Takhar drop out of the Ontario Liberal leadership race?

Andy Radia
Politics Reporter
Canada Politics

In an exclusive interview with Yahoo! Canada News, a senior official from the Takhar campaign explained why Harinder Takhar dropped out of the Ontario Liberal leadership race and joined the Sandra Pupatello camp after just one ballot.

The official, who asked not to be named, said that Pupatello and Takhar have a history together. Specifically, he said that it was Pupatello who first recruited Takhar into politics many years ago.

He also mentioned that Pupatello stood by Takhar in 2006 when, as a cabinet minister, was found in conflict for not keeping arms-length distance from his business dealings.

Finally, the source said, Takhar and Pupatello have similar policies.

"They both have a small business platform," he said.

The official said that the decision to join Pupatello was made 10 minutes before it was made public. As a result, Takhar's name will appear on the second ballot.

Takhar's delegates will be a big boost to Pupatello who, in the first ballot, only beat chief rival Kathleen Wynne, by two votes.

Earlier in the day, candidate Eric Hoskins was forced to drop out the race after finishing last on the first ballot. He and most of his delegates have gone to the Wynne camp.