Ontario PCs talk leadership race date, rules today

The executive of Ontario's Progressive Conservative party meets today to talk about details for their upcoming leadership race, including the date and rules.

MPP Christine Elliott only PC member to publicly announce leadership bid

Former Ontario PC leader Tim Hudak stepped down from his post on July 2, sparking a leadership race. (Nathan Denette/Canadian Press)

The executive of Ontario's Progressive Conservative party meets today to talk about details for their upcoming leadership race.

There are differing opinions in the Tory ranks about whether the party should hold a relatively quick leadership convention next January or February or wait a year or longer to provide time to rebuild and work on new policies.

MPP Christine Elliott is the only candidate to publicly announce she is running for the leadership of the Ontario PC party. (Patrick Morrell/CBC)
Sources tell The Canadian Press a group of grassroots Conservatives is urging the executive to wait as long as possible so potential candidates have a chance to look for support and test their fundraising abilities.

Interim PC Leader Jim Wilson was elected by the caucus as caretaker this week to replace Tim Hudak following the Tories' second election loss under his leadership. 

He has said he'd like to see a convention held "sooner rather than later."

The lack of consensus may prevent the PC executive from setting a convention date on Saturday but if they do, they'll also have to determine a date for cutting off membership sales and set a spending limit for candidates.

They will also have to decide if the next leader will be chosen by delegates to the convention or if every member of the party will get a chance to vote.

MPP Jim Wilson, seen in a photo taken in February of last year, is serving as the interim leader of the Ontario Progressive Conservatives. (Michelle Siu/Canadian Press)
In 2009, when Hudak was chosen leader, every Conservative member was given a vote, but they were weighted so each of the 107 ridings submitted a total of 100 votes to prevent any one area from dominating the balloting.

Supporters of deputy Tory leader Christine Elliott, the only declared leadership candidate so far, are pushing for a convention early next year.

Several other caucus members have expressed interest in joining the race, including Lisa MacLeod, Vic Fedeli and Monte McNaughton, while some federal Conservatives are also said to be mulling over leadership bids.

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