Conservatives seek to hold two seats in today’s byelections in Ontario, Alberta

A pair of federal byelections today in what had been comfortable Conservative ridings offer challenges for both the Tories and the opposition parties.

OTTAWA — A pair of federal byelections today in what had been comfortable Conservative ridings offer challenges for both the Tories and the opposition parties.

Voters in Whitby-Oshawa are looking to replace the late Jim Flaherty, who won with 58 per cent of the vote in 2011.

The Conservatives have flooded the riding with high-profile campaigners in recent weeks, hoping to hang on to it.

The Liberals, however, are pressing hard and say they are closing the gap.

In the Alberta riding of Yellowhead, the Conservatives are expected to easily retain a stronghold where Rob Merrifield took 77 per cent of the vote in 2011.

Merrifield resigned in September to work for newly minted Alberta Premier Jim Prentice.

In Whitby-Oshawa, the Conservatives are running Pat Perkins, a former two-term mayor of Whitby.

She has been endorsed by Flaherty’s widow, Christine Elliott, who is a front-runner for the Ontario Progressive Conservative leadership. Two of Flaherty’s sons are honorary chairs of the Perkins campaign.

The Liberals, who finished a distant third in the riding in 2011, have fielded Celina Caesar-Chavannes, an entrepreneur, research consultant and political newcomer.

They say they have a shot at an upset.

The New Democrats are running Trish McAuliffe, an autoworker and union activist, who ran second to Flaherty in 2011 with 22 per cent of the vote.

In Yellowhead, retired Mountie Jim Eglinski is carrying the Conservative standard.

The Liberals, who took only three per cent of the vote in 2011, are running Ryan Maguhn, a high school teacher and member of Hinton town council.

Eric Rosendahl, a local labour activist, is the NDP candidate.

A win — or even strong second-place finishes — would be a boost for Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau, who has led the Liberals to dramatic gains in every byelection held since he became leader 19 months ago.

That would bolster Trudeau’s argument that the Liberals are the real alternative to the Harper government, not the NDP’s official Opposition.

Just Posted

The City of Red Deer sits at 249 active cases of the virus, after hitting a peak of 565 active cases on Feb. 22. (Black Press file image)
Red Deer down to 119 active COVID-19 cases

Province identifies 179 new cases Saturday

Red Deer Emergency Services responded to an explosion at a duplex on Rupert Crescent Saturday morning. (Photo by Sean McIntosh/Advocate staff)
Firefighters respond to explosion in Red Deer early Saturday morning

There was an explosion at a Red Deer duplex early Saturday morning.… Continue reading

Terry Betts, of Kananaskis, looks at the vehicle he was hoping to sell during the Quick Times Red Deer Swap Meet in the Westerner Park parking lot Saturday. (Photo by Sean McIntosh/Advocate staff)
Quick Times Red Deer Swap Meet held outdoors

A big automotive swap meet was held outdoors this year in Red… Continue reading

The Alberta Sports Hall of Fame and Museum is set to re-open on July 2. (File Photo)
Alberta Sports Hall of Fame and Museum to reopen Monday

The Alberta Sports Hall of Fame and Museum will reopen for visitors… Continue reading

Huzaifa (left), Saif (middle) and Zoya (right) were among the 60 or so Red Deerians who participated in a vigil for the victims of a recent terrorist attack that killed four people in London Ont. (Photo by BYRON HACKETT/Advocate Staff)
Red Deer vigil honours victims of London, Ont. terrorist attack

About 60 people gathered at the corner of 49 Ave. and 50… Continue reading

A man wears a face mask as he walks by a sign for a COVID-19 vaccination site in Montreal, Sunday, May 16, 2021, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues in Canada and around the world. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
Canada paid a premium to get doses from Pfizer earlier than planned

OTTAWA — Canada paid a premium to get more than 250,000 doses… Continue reading

The Kamloops Indian Residential School in Kamloops, B.C., is shown in this 1930 handout photo. HO — Deschatelets-NDC Archives
Calls grow for Ottawa to review settlement decisions for residential school survivors

Lawyer Teri Lynn Bougie still cries when she talks about the final… Continue reading

Syringes are readied at a COVID-19 mobile vaccination clinic for members of First Nations and their partners, Friday, April 30, 2021 in Montreal. Most of the federal contracts for COVID-19 vaccines allow for Canada to donate some of its doses to other countries or international aid organizations and in at least three cases, for the doses to be resold.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Canada’s vaccine contracts allow for doses to be donated, in some cases resold

OTTAWA — Most of the federal contracts for COVID-19 vaccines allow for… Continue reading

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, President of the Union of British Columbia Indian Chiefs, responds to the report on the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls, in Vancouver, on Monday June 3, 2019. As stories of the horrors of residential schools circulate after the Tk'emlups te Secwepemc First Nation announced it had located what are believed to be the remains of 215 children, Grand Chief Stewart Phillip of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs said he feels a connection with the former students. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Two sides of the same coin: Ex-foster kids identify with residential school survivors

VANCOUVER — As stories of the horrors of residential schools circulate after… Continue reading

A woman sits and weeps at the scene of Sunday's hate-motivated vehicle attack in London, Ont. on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. Four members of a family in London, Ont., are set to be buried today. The public has been invited to help celebrate the lives of Talat Afzaal, 74, her son Salman Afzaal, 46, his wife Madiha Salman, 44, and their 15-year-old daughter Yumna Salman.THE CANADIAN PRESS/ Geoff Robins
Funeral to be held today for London family killed in attack

LONDON, Ont. — Four members of a Muslim family killed in what… Continue reading

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and United States President Joe Biden listen to United Kingdom Prime Minister Boris Johnson deliver opening remarks at a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, United Kingdom Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Trudeau to discuss foreign policy with G7 leaders at second day of summit meeting

CARBIS BAY, CORNWALL, ENGLAND — Foreign policy is on the agenda for… Continue reading

Multivitamins are shown on the packaging line at the Pfizer plant in Montreal, Thursday, July 12, 2012. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
Canadian drug companies want new pricing regs delayed again until after pandemic

OTTAWA — Almost three dozen Canadian pharmaceutical companies made a direct appeal… Continue reading

In this file photo, a lotto Max ticket is shown in Toronto on Monday Feb. 26, 2018. (By THE CANADIAN PRESS)
No winning ticket for Friday’s $70 million Lotto Max jackpot

TORONTO — The massive $70 million dollar Lotto Max jackpot remained unclaimed… Continue reading

Most Read