‘Enjoy the next four years’: McDonell takes SDSG again

Progressive Conservative Jim McDonell and his family celebrate in front of supporters at the Ramada Cornwall on Thursday, June 7, 2018. McDonell took Stormont-Dundas-South Glengarry with another landslide victory. (Newswatch Group/Bill Kingston)

SDSG/CORNWALL – Progressive Conservative Jim McDonell will be representing Stormont-Dundas-South Glengarry for another four years.

Unofficial results show McDonell won with 26,780 votes, 61.5 per cent of the vote, while NDP Marc Benoit had 9,416. Liberal Heather Megill had 5,386 and Green Elaine Kennedy had 1,596 votes. Libertarian Sabile Trimm received 360 votes.

“It’s great news. We have a Doug Ford PC majority government. All of our members seem to be back, which is great news. We’re a great team,” McDonell told reporters in the lobby of Ramada Cornwall shortly after his victory was sealed in the 2018 Ontario election.

The PCs won 76 seats for a majority government. The NDP had 40, the Liberals had 7 and Green Party leader Mike Schreiner won his seat in Guelph. The Liberals with seven seats have lost official party status.

McDonell said he suspected the outcome that happened tonight but polls ahead of various elections, including Alberta and the USA, have been wrong. “I kinda had a feeling but you’re never sure. Some of the seats we were worried about seem to be winning with a good number.”

He didn’t expect the Liberals to be “as badly beaten as they were. I would have thought they would have been the competition.”

On the showing of the NDP, McDonell felt voters know the troubles the province experienced during the Bob Rae era as well as the political climate right now in British Columbia. He believes voters were also hesitant to vote NDP with the party’s plan to shut down the Pickering nuclear power plant.

While the final voter turnout numbers aren’t in, McDonell feels there was a lot more interest in this election. He described the 2014 election “a sleeper.”

McDonell said Ford was doing a whirlwind tour of Ontario so they haven’t discussed priorities for Stormont-Dundas-South Glengarry now that the PC party will govern.

“Doug’s focus had to be in ridings we needed to win. We needed another 30 ridings to form government and that was our goal.”

McDonell would later enter the packed Adirondack Room with his family to cheers and applause. “Enjoy the night and enjoy the next four years,” he told the crowd.