Pupatello leads in Liberal leadership race

Jan 15, 2013 | News

By Sandra Pupatello (Flickr) [CC-BY-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

By Sandra Pupatello (Flickr) [CC-BY-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

By Dona Boulos

With the Ontario Liberal Leadership Convention scheduled to start on Jan. 25, an early leader has emerged in the race to replace Premier, Dalton McGuinty.

Pupatello, a former Windsor-West MPP, may have surpassed her own anticipations with the number of convention delegates she had secured as of this past weekend.

According to a Globe and Mail article, Pupatello “came into the weekend saying she would be happy to place second [in the race].”

Alternatively Pupatello came out on top, winning 27 per cent of the delegates, defeating her closest challenger, Kathleen Wynne, MPP for Don Valley West, by a two per cent lead.

The Liberal race has quickly become a two-woman race, with Gerrard Kennedy, a former MPP for Parkdale-High Park, falling behind in third with 14 per cent of the delegates.

There were originally seven leadership candidates, according to a CBC report, but Glen Murray, MPP for Toronto Centre, dropped out of the race on Jan. 10, throwing his support behind Wynne.

Harinder Takhar, MPP for Mississauga-Erindale, won 13 per cent of the 1,800 convention delegates who voted this past weekend. Charles Sousa was at 11 per cent and Eric Hoskins, MPP for St. Paul’s, last with six per cent of the votes.

McGuinty resigned as premier on Oct. 15 of last year, saying, “It’s time for renewal”.

The convention will be held in downtown Toronto at Ryerson University’s Mattamy Athletic Centre, the former Maple Leafs Gardens.

The convention will bring together 1,837 delegates who will be able to cast ballots for the new Liberal leader.