Provincial by-election called for Lambton-Kent-Middlesex

Voters will head to the polls in the riding of Lambton-Kent-Middlesex on May 2, 2024. (Elections Ontario - image credit)
Voters will head to the polls in the riding of Lambton-Kent-Middlesex on May 2, 2024. (Elections Ontario - image credit)

Residents in the provincial riding of Lambton-Kent-Middlesex will be heading to the polls next month after a byelection was announced on Wednesday.

The Ontario legislature seat was left vacant after former Progressive Conservative MPP and labour minister Monte McNaughton resigned in September 2023.

McNaughton served as an MPP for 12 years and was a key ally to Premier Doug Ford. Much of his work as labour minister focused on addressing the province's labour shortage and encouraging more young people to go into the skilled trades. He resigned to become the executive vice-president of industry relations for Woodbine Entertainment.

Elections Ontario has not yet posted an official list of candidates for the riding but some candidates are already known.

Steve Pinsonneault, Progressive Conservative

Chatham-Kent councillor Steve Pinsonneault was announced the Ontario PC Party candidate for the riding in January.

"Steve Pinsonneault is the right candidate to stand up for the people of Lambton-Kent-Middlesex against the high-tax, low-growth policies of the Liberals and NDP," said Michael Diamond, Ontario PC Party president in a statement. "As a member of the Ontario PC team at Queen's Park, Steve will keep fighting to bring high-quality health care, good-paying jobs and better highways and infrastructure to southwestern Ontario."

Cathy Burghardt-Jesson, Liberal

Cathy Burghardt-Jesson, the long-serving mayor of Lucan, announced she is running for the Ontario Liberals for the Lambton-Kent-Middlesex in February.

"Unlike the Ford Conservatives, Cathy has spent over a decade squarely focused on serving families and being their strong voice on municipal councils," said Bonnie Crombie, leader of the Ontario Liberal Party in a statement. "I am thrilled to have Cathy on our team, and I look forward to welcoming her to Queen's Park where she will build on her advocacy for rural Ontario."

Kathryn Shailer, New Democratic Party

NDP candidate Kathryn Shailer kicked off her campaign for the riding last month.

"I am thrilled that Kathryn Shailer has stepped up to represent the good people of Lambton-Kent-Middlesex," said Marit Stiles, the leader of the Ontario NDP in a statement. "Kathryn is a dynamic leader with a proven track record. She'll be a strong new voice for this community as part of our Official Opposition NDP team."

Andraena Tilgner, Green Party

Andraena Tilgner, a registered respiratory therapist, will be on the ballot for the Green Party.

"Andraena Tilgener has seen first-hand how profoundly people are affected by the gaps in Ontario's healthcare system," said the party in a news release Wednesday. "Andraena supports the Ontario Greens' plan to invest in home care and its commitment to act on the social determinants of health by investing in affordable housing and education in Lambton–Kent–Middlesex."

Keith Benn, New Blue Party

Keith Benn, a consultant and geologist from Port Lambton, is representing the New Blue Party.

"Keith has chosen to represent the New Blue Party as a candidate because, like so many Ontarians, he recognizes that our province and our country are truly at a historical moment when we must cast our vote wisely to preserve our parliamentary democracy and our basic rights, and to get our province back on track by governing according to true conservative principles," the party posted on their website Wednesday.

A by-election was also called in Milton. Progressive Conservative MPP Parm Gill resigned his seat in January to become a candidate for Pierre Poilievre's federal Conservative Party.

Under the Election Act, elections must be called on a Wednesday and held the fifth Thursday after the writ is issued.

The by-elections will be held on May 2, 2024.