Source confirms Mulroney will run for Ontario PC leadership as Elliott joins race
Jeff Lagerquist, CTVNews.ca Staff
Published Thursday, February 1, 2018 3:37PM EST
Last Updated Thursday, February 1, 2018 5:44PM EST
Political newcomer Caroline Mulroney will run for leadership of Ontario’s Progressive Conservative Party, a campaign source tells CTV News sister station CP24. The development was followed by confirmation that former MPP Christine Elliott will also join the race.
The move follows wide-spread speculation about who will lead the party into the June 7 provincial election against Premier Kathleen Wynne in the wake of former PC leader Patrick Brown’s resignation over sexual harassment allegations.
Mulroney is the Progressive Conservative candidate for the York-Simcoe riding, a lawyer, and the daughter of former Conservative prime minister Brian Mulroney.
According to the source, Mulroney has significant support from both caucus and candidates, and will have to get 100 signatures to become a nominated candidate.
Mulroney received some endorsement on social media after her sister-in-law Jessica Mulroney posed the question of if she should run to her Instagram following.
“We need more smart and competent women in politics,” read the poll posted on Tuesday. “I think my sister-in-law Caroline Mulroney would be an amazing Premier. Do you think she should run?”
Former Ontario PC MPP Christine Elliott also announced that she would join the race on Thursday. Elliot tweeted, “I’m in #pcpo #onpoli.”
Elliot is currently Ontario’s medical patient ombudsman. She is also the widow of the late Jim Flaherty, who served as finance minister in the Ontario government of Premier Mike Harris and federally under former prime minister Stephen Harper.
Elliott represented the ridings of Whitby-Ajax and Whitby Oshawa between 2006 and 2015.
Former Toronto city councillor Doug Ford officially announced his intentions to run for the party’s leadership on Monday. He will be seeking the nomination in the riding of Etobicoke-North.
Votes will be cast electronically between March 2 and March 8. The results will be announced March 10. The Tory’s leadership election organizing committee has said the party would stick to a one-member one-vote rule.
“The 2018 Ontario PC leadership race will see party members from every region of the province able to vote and select Ontario’s future premier,” said Hartley Lefton, chairman of the committee, in a statement on Wednesday. “Balloting will be conducted by secure remote electronic voting.”