Emerson, Hearn will not seek re-election
Robert Fife, Ottawa Bureau Chief
Published Tuesday, September 2, 2008 11:32PM EDT
Foreign Affairs Minister David Emerson, one of the bright stars in the Conservative cabinet, will not be running in the election expected to be called on Sunday, CTV News has learned.
Sources have also told CTV that Fisheries Minister Loyola Hearn will retire from politics when the writ is dropped.
Both men are senior ministers who carry heavy political responsibilities.
Emerson won the riding of Vancouver Kingsway in the last election and switched to the Tories when Stephen Harper formed a government.
He was unlikely to win this working class riding as a Conservative although the party was prepared to find him a safer riding.
But sources say Emerson decided he didn't want to make the lengthy commute back and forth to the capital.
Emerson is considered to be one of the most experienced cabinet ministers in Prime Minister Stephen Harper's government. As the minister of international trade, he managed to reach a softwood lumber agreement with the United States, ending a long-simmering trade dispute.
As a Liberal, he had served as the industry minister after being appointed to the post by Liberal prime minister Paul Martin in 2004.
Hearn is retiring after spending decades in politics as a Newfoundland provincial cabinet minister and later as a federal Tory MP and cabinet minister.
He served as education minister in the province before joining the federal Progressive Conservative party. He then became the first House leader for the new Conservative party.
In the last year, Hearn defended Newfoundland and Labrador's seal hunters after the European Union threatened a possible ban on seal products from Canada.
Hearn also weathered several attacks from Newfoundland Premier Danny Williams over Ottawa's equalization formula for the provinces. Williams has said he will do everything in his power to defeat the federal Tories.