Liberal Gordie Hogg has defeated Conservative candidate Kerry-Lynne Findlay in Monday’s South Surrey-White Rock byelection.
“This is your victory,” Hogg told supporters during a speech at Boston Pizza in South Surrey. “Thank you so very much for all that you’ve done.”
The result marks the first time Liberals have won the local vote in a federal election since the 1940s.
Hogg finished with 14,369 votes (47.5 per cent), compared to Findlay’s 12,752 (42.1 per cent). NDP candidate Jonathan Silveira was third, with 1, 478 votes (4.9 per cent), followed by Green Party’s Larry Colero with 1,247 (4.1 per cent). Christian Heritage Party’s Rod Taylor received 238 votes (0.8 per cent), Libertarian Donald Wilson got 89 votes (0.3 per cent) and Progressive Canadian Party candidate Michael Huenefeld garnered 86 votes (0.3 per cent).
Findlay conceded defeat at about 9:15 p.m.
“I wish we’d had more time,” she told Peace Arch News, referring to how long candidates had to campaign.
She and supporters watched the results come in at Morgan Creek Golf Course.
“We worked very hard and we will be fighting in 2019, for sure,” Findlay said.
All seven candidates were vying to win the MP seat left vacant by Conservative Dianne Watts, who resigned the position in September after announcing a bid for the leadership of the BC Liberal party.
Candidates’ campaigns for election lasted a little over a month – the byelection was announced in early November – and the run-up to today’s vote included multiple visits from party leaders. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, in support of Hogg, and Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer, in support of Findlay, each made two visits to the riding in an attempt to drum up support for their candidates.
The South Surrey-White Rock byelection was one of four taking place across Canada today. The others were in Newfoundland and Labrador (Bonavista-Burin-Trinity), Ontario (Scarborough-Agincourt) and Saskatchewan (Battlefords-Lloydminster).
The Bonavista-Burin-Trinity riding – the easternmost of the four byelections – was the first to have votes counted, with Liberal candidate Churence Rogers holding onto the riding for the incumbent party, after being selected on 69.2 per cent of the 12,593 votes cast.
In Scarborough-Agincourt, Liberal Jean Yip – the widow of late MP Arnold Chan, whose death triggered the byelection – won with 49 per cent of the vote. In Battlefords-Lloydminster, Conservative Rosemarie Ashley Falk ran away with the vote, with 69.6 per cent of voters selecting her.