Liberals win provincial byelection in rural N.L
The Liberal Party pulled off a victory in a provincial byelection Tuesday night in the district of The Straits-White Bay North, on Newfoundland's Northern Peninsula.
In a race that was neck-and-neck all evening between the Liberal and Tory candidates, right up until the last few polls, Liberal Marshall Dean squeaked out a victory by just 126 votes.
Dean received 1,925 votes while Progressive Conservative candidate Rick Pelley received 1,799.
The only other candidate, Dale Colbourne, who ran for the New Democratic Party, got 321votes.
A total of 6,816 area residents were eligible to vote.
Elections Newfoundland and Labrador initially released a preliminary final result that had Dean winning by 139 votes, but that was revised a short time later to reflect the 126 vote difference.
The byelection was called to replace former cabinet minister Trevor Taylor, who resigned from politics in late September.
It was a hard-fought, highly charged campaign that saw the provincial government back down on the strongest issue in the byelection: planned cuts to health care in the region.
The Newfoundland and Labrador government planned to reduce medical services in the area, but that decision was reversed late last week.
The byelection doesn't lessen Premier Danny Williams's hold on power. The Tories still hold 42 of the 48 seats in the legislature, the Liberals occupy four seats and the NDP one.
There is one vacant seat. A byelection has yet to be called to replace former cabinet minister Paul Oram, who resigned two weeks after Taylor stepped down.