Some say the only poll that matters is on election day, but Kathleen Wynne didn’t wait for that to happen.
After months of polls showing lacklustre voter support for the Ontario Liberals, the leader of the party said she was “sorry, not sorry” for what the Grits have done in the province. But the numbers suggest the race is coming down to the Tories or the NDP, so Wynne took matters into her own hands.
“On June 7th, voters will elect a new government. I don’t know who voters will choose but I am pretty sure that it won’t be me. After Thursday, I will no longer be Ontario’s premier. And I’m OK with that,” Wynne said Saturday.
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Clearly emotional with her voice breaking at times, the Liberal leader admitted it was a “hard thing to do.” After all, the provincial election was only five days away. However, she insisted it was the best move for her party to make the case for supporting local Liberal candidates.
“The more Liberal MPPs we send to Queen’s Park on June 7th, the less likely it becomes that either Doug Ford or the NDP will be able to form a majority government,” Wynne told reporters. “By voting Liberal, you can keep the next government, Conservative or NDP, from acting too extreme — one way or the other.”
Wynne refused to endorse either the PCs or the NDP, or whether she would stay on as party leader after the June 7 vote. But she did stress that the battle for every local riding is “really, really important.”
NDP, PC leaders react
NDP Leader Andrea Horwath took exception to Wynne’s announcement, calling it a “dangerous game” to play with voters.
“Her request today for a minority government is a demand that she be allowed to continue to hold the power at Queen’s Park — something voters have already rejected,” Horwath said in a statement.
Meanwhile, PC Leader Doug Ford didn’t say much about Wynne’s remarks, only maintaining the upcoming provincial election was about change.
A vote for the Liberal Party can mean so much. The more Liberal MPPs we send to Queen’s Park on June 7th, the less likely it becomes that either Doug Ford or the NDP will be able to form a majority government.
— Kathleen Wynne (@Kathleen_Wynne) June 2, 2018
Now both the NDP and the PCs are digging in with their claims that they are the best option to lead Ontario. But will Wynne’s call for voters to choose Liberals to keep either party in check make any difference?
Will voters hear her message and help the Liberals retain official party status in Ontario by holding at least eight seats at Queen’s Park? Or will voters see this as a white flag for the Liberals and feel forced to choose between the NDP or the PCs to prevent one from winning? Tell us what you think by voting in our poll above and having your say in the comment section below.
With files from The Canadian Press