Elizabeth May is pitching herself as co-leader of the Green Party: sources

·2 min read
Green Party parliamentary leader Elizabeth May speaks during a news conference on July 8, 2020 in Ottawa. (Adrian Wyld/The Canadian Press - image credit)
Green Party parliamentary leader Elizabeth May speaks during a news conference on July 8, 2020 in Ottawa. (Adrian Wyld/The Canadian Press - image credit)

Former Green Party of Canada leader Elizabeth May is going to run again for her old job and is proposing to share responsibilities with a co-leader, sources tell CBC News.

Multiple sources confirm a report by the Toronto Star that May is set to join the Green Party leadership race.

Sources who spoke on the condition of confidentiality because they aren't permitted to speak publicly told CBC News that May is proposing to run as co-leader. Some sources said they were caught off guard when they first heard the news.

According to the party's leadership guidelines, the party will announce official leadership contestants on Aug. 31.

The field of candidates will be whittled down through two rounds of voting; the party will announce which candidates made it through the first round on Oct. 14. The final round of voting begins immediately after and the party is expected to announce a new leader on Nov. 19.

The Green Party has come in for criticism over its strict rules for the race. Quebec Green Party Leader Alex Tyrrell said the format favours well-known candidates over less prominent ones.

Tyrrell was preparing a leadership campaign of his own when the federal party expelled him earlier this month. The federal Greens said they ejected him because he violated the party's code of conduct with his controversial statements about the war in Ukraine.

Sources who spoke to CBC News said May's proposed co-leadership model would require the approval of party members. The sources said she's hoping to lead the Greens alongside Jonathan Pedneault, a former researcher at Human Rights Watch.

May resigned the leadership in 2019 after what many observers called a disappointing federal election campaign result for the party. The party increased its seat count in the House of Commons to three — fewer than some had predicted.

If she's elected, May will succeed Annamie Paul, who resigned after the 2021 election.

Paul, the first Black and Jewish woman elected to lead a federal party, described her brief time in the leadership as one of the most challenging periods in her life. She accused the some federal council members of writing a list of allegations against her that were racist and misogynistic.

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