Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff will make his only election campaign stop in Prince Edward Island in the Egmont riding, a decision that has left some voters and political pundits "puzzled."


Guy Gallant sees Ignatieff's visit as a vote of confidence in his campaign. ((CBC))

Ignatieff will be in Summerside on Saturday to support Guy Gallant, the Liberal candidate in the riding.

A political science professor at the University of Prince Edward Island said of the four ridings Ignatieff could visit, he's not sure why Egmont was picked.

"I'm a bit surprised," said Peter McKenna.

"My sense is — I could be wrong — but many people in Egmont weren't even sure who this Guy Gallant was two weeks ago, so I'm a bit puzzled that Ignatieff would be going there now at this stage in the campaign."

Conservative candidate Gail Shea, the incumbent in Egmont, won her seat by just 55 votes over then-Liberal candidate Keith Milligan in the 2008 election.

She has spent two years in the federal cabinet as the minister of fisheries and oceans since then, which some voters say makes her too popular to lose.

"Everybody you hear talking here is supporting Gail," said Ross MacKay, a resident of Campbellton.

Eric Phillips, another resident, agreed.

"Gail's done a pretty good job in the last couple years."

Gallant said he sees Ignatieff's visit as a vote of confidence from the federal Liberal party.

"It shows the commitment that Michael Ignatieff and the Liberal Party of Canada have for the people of Egmont," he said Wednesday.

"It also shows that they're paying close attention to this race, and that this is a much closer race than people thought originally."

McKenna said another explanation may be that the Liberals are confident they will win the other three ridings in P.E.I. — Cardigan, Charlottetown and Malpeque — all of which have long been held by Liberals.

Shea said whatever the reason, she's not concerned about Ignatieff's visit.

"I think a lot of people have decided how they're going to vote," she told CBC News.