Lianne Rood has officially taken the torch from retired MP Bev Shipley and will keep the riding of Lambton-Kent-Middlesex Conservative blue.
However, Liberal leader Justin Trudeau will remain Prime Minister of Canada, albeit with a minority government.
Rood, a first-time candidate, easily won her seat in the riding with over 28,000 votes, good for 49% of the vote.
“Thank you so much,” Rood told a crowd of supporters at election night celebration held in Grand Bend.
“I am so honoured to be chosen as you next Member of Parliament. Thank-you to the residents of Lambton-Kent-Middlsesex for putting your trust in me to represent you in Ottawa as your next Member of Parliament… we did it.”
Rood said she was overcome with emotion and joy as the results started pouring in on Monday night.
“As many of you know, this hasn’t just been a two month campaign for me,” she said. “It has been a year and a half since I joined the nomination race to run to be the representative here for the Conservative Party.”
Rood said the work doesn’t stop now that she has been elected.
“We’ve knocked on over 15,000 doors, I’ve spoken to so many constituents… we’ve met with so many people in the community. I’ve been driving from one end of the riding to the other and we have a huge riding.”
Rood added: “I’ve met incredible people from all walks of life. I’ve heard stories of triumph, I’ve heard stories of struggles, I’ve heard desperate circumstances. The theme of our conversations were all similar… people were afraid of the debt and they’re concerned for themselves. They’re concerned about making ends-meet, they’re concerned about their grandchildren and their parents and their families.”
Rood also thanked her family and campaign team for all of their guidance and support, and congratulated her fellow candidates in the riding for putting their names forward and running good campaigns.
“I’d also like to take a moment to thank Bev Shipley for your service and taking the chance on me and bringing me to Ottawa with you and for being such a great mentor to me over the years and especially during this campaign,” she said.
“Thank-you for your knowledge and for sharing that with me. I hope to continue to use your knowledge moving forward.”
Rood acknowledged the overall result, which saw Andrew Sheer and the Conservatives coming up short across the country, finishing second to Justin Trudeau and the Liberals.
“While tonight’s results are not exactly what we had hoped for, they’re not in our favour, but you know what, we are lucky because we live in Canada,” Rood said.
“Canada is a democracy and had a right to cast our ballots and have our voices heard and Canadians have spoke. While it’s not exactly what we thought, I have passion and drive for Lambton-Kent-Middlesex and I promise I will use that and do my best to represent you in Ottawa moving forward.”
“I promise to be your rural voice in Ottawa,” Rood added
Rood’s predecessor took to Twitter to congratulate her on the win.
Congratulations to @Lianne_Rood, our incoming Member of Parliament for LKM! Many weeks of hard work and dedication have led to this victory tonight! I know you will be a strong voice and a great representative for LKM!
— Bev Shipley (@BevShipleyMP) October 22, 2019
Liberal candidate Jesse McCormick finished in second place with 25% of the vote. NDP candidate Dylan McLay finished in third place with 16% of the vote, followed by Anthony Li with the Green Party with 6% of the vote, Bria Atkins of the People’s Party with 3% and Rob Lalande of the Veterans Coalition Party of Canada with 0.5% of the vote.
As of 1:30 a.m. on Tuesday morning, a 240/242 polls had been reported across Lambton-Kent-Middlesex.
Unofficially, the Liberals claimed 156 seats across the country, the Conservatives 122, the Bloc with 32, the NDP with 24, Green with 3 and 1 independent seat.
Watch for more details this week on the election.