(Blackburnmedia.ca file photo by Ashton Patis.) (Blackburnmedia.ca file photo by Ashton Patis.)

By-election called for Lambton-Kent-Middlesex

Voters in Lambton-Kent-Middlesex will head to the polls on May 2, 2024.

The province has dropped the writ for a by-election in the riding, which has been without an MPP since former Labour Minister Monte McNaughton stepped away from politics in September.

Under the Elections Act, elections must be called on a Wednesday and held the fifth Thursday after the date of the issue of the writ.

The Lambton-Kent Middlesex riding has been held by the Progressive Conservatives since 2011.

Longtime Chatham-Kent Councillor Steve Pinsonneault is running for the Progressive Conservatives, Mayor of Lucan-Biddulph Cathy Burghardt-Jesson is running for the Liberals, Kathryn Shailer is representing the NDP, registered respiratory therapist Andraena Tilgner is running for the Green Party, Dr. Keith Benn will represent the New Blue Party of Ontario, Stephen Campbell is running for the None of the Above Direct Democracy Party, and Cynthia Workman is running for the Ontario Party.

A poll released in the lead-up to the by-election call shows that the PCs hold the early lead. The poll, done by Liaison Strategies, used interactive voice response and surveyed 403 voters. The poll showed Pinsonneault with the support of 39 per cent of respondents, while Burghardt-Jesson had 26 per cent, Shailer with 14 per cent, and Tilgner at 12 per cent. Benn did not appear in the poll.

"Lambton-Kent-Middlesex meanwhile is trending Tory. This is not a surprise in a long-time PC stronghold, though the PC vote is currently down 20 points. Some of that was probably unavoidable, long-time MPP Monte McNaughton is no longer on the ballot and byelections are sometimes a way for voters to send a message to the governing party. Low turnout may see the PC vote trend higher if their committed supporters make it out to the polls," said David Valentin, principal at Liaison Strategies. "However, despite being down 20 points, the PC numbers in Lambton-Kent-Middlesex are still good enough for a 13 point lead."

For more information on how to make sure you are registered to vote in the by-election, go to the Elections Ontario website.

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