Dynamite win for Progressive Conservative Bouma in Brantford-Brant

·2 min read

It was projected to be a neck-and-neck race, but incumbent MPP Will Bouma stood head and shoulders over NDP challenger Harvey Bischof to hold Brantford-Brant for the Progressive Conservatives.

Bouma clinched a second term at Queen’s Park by claiming 44.17 per cent of the vote to Bischof’s 28.29 per cent.

Liberal Ruby Toor and Green candidate Karleigh Csordas trailed in third and fourth place, respectively.

Bouma, a former County of Brant councillor, said he would use his second term to push for further improvements to area hospitals, including a new emergency room for Brantford General, along with securing expanded GO Transit service to the city and exploring a new “north-south link” between the 403 and 401 to improve traffic safety on the busy Highway 24 corridor.

“I’m looking forward to getting back to work,” Bouma told The Spectator.

“There’s much to do, and I’m already texting back and forth with all the community leaders about picking up where we left off. It’s exciting.”

Bischof, a retired high school English teacher and former president of the Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation, was polling competitively heading into election night and had secured the endorsement of several unions and the Brantford and District Labour Council.

NDP Leader Andrea Horwath visited Brantford-Brant several times to get out the vote for Bischof and federal NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh also campaigned with Bischof in the riding.

But voters opted for Bouma, whose comfortable win was in direct contrast to the 2018 election, where as a rookie candidate he narrowly beat out the NDP’s Alex Felsky by 635 votes.

This time Bouma cruised to victory with 7,455 more votes than his high-profile opponent, though his total vote share only rose about two per cent.

“I’m very glad the people of Brantford and Brant and Six Nations spoke confidently about where they see the leadership has been and where it’s going,” Bouma said.

“So many times you walk by something and you say to yourself, ‘Someone should fix that.’ And to be able to actually affect that change is very gratifying.”

BRANTFORD-BRANT

62 of 62 polls reporting

Will Bouma (PC): 20,738 (44.17 per cent)

Harvey Bischof (NDP): 13,283 (28.29 per cent)

Ruby Toor (LIB): 6,083 (12.96 per cent)

Karleigh Csordas (GRN): 3,174 (6.76 per cent)

Tad Brudzinski (NB): 2,089 (4.45 per cent)

Allan Wilson (OP): 640 (1.36 per cent)

Leslie Bory (CCP): 490 (1.04 per cent)

Rob Ferguson (LP): 299 (0.64 per cent)

John Turmel (IND): 157 (0.33 per cent)

J.P. Antonacci, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Hamilton Spectator

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