People's Party of Canada Leader Maxime Bernier to run in Manitoba byelection
People's Party of Canada Leader Maxime Bernier will run in an upcoming byelection for a federal seat in Manitoba, Radio-Canada has learned.
Bernier, a former cabinet minister who quit the Conservative caucus in 2018 to found the party, will make an official announcement in Portage la Prairie on Friday.
The riding of Portage-Lisgar was held previously by longtime Conservative MP Candice Bergen, who served as the party's interim leader last year and stepped down in February.
Bernier has said he was considering running for the seat, in part because it is in a rural area with a large francophone community.
Bergen easily won the riding in 2021, winning over 50 per cent of the vote. The People's Party of Canada candidate came in second with 22 per cent.
When reached by CBC, PPC spokesperson Martin Masse wouldn't confirm Bernier's candidacy, but said it was a "strong possibility."
"It's a riding with obviously a lot of voters who share the PPC's conservative, libertarian and populist approach to politics, and one where we have the best potential to elect a member of Parliament," Masses said in an email.
"The confirmation should come on Friday," he said.
Bernier will be up against Bergen's former campaign manager Branden Leslie, who won the nomination to run under the Conservative banner.