The Liberals swept through vote-rich Toronto Monday night, capturing all of the city's 25 ridings by reclaiming old strongholds from the NDP and Conservatives.
That red tide overtook Conservative Finance Minister Joe Oliver, who conceded his Eglinton—Lawrence seat to Marco Mendicino. Although the high-profile cabinet minister broke a 29-year Liberal streak with his 2011 win, the Liberal momentum returned the riding to its fold Monday night.
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The Liberal sweep through Toronto saw the NDP edged out of its key ridings, both those they won in 2011 and others that have been New Democrat strongholds for years, like Toronto—Danforth.
NDP loses in Liberal sweep
It's a story that echoed across the country as the New Democrats dropped to third place in Parliament, a devastating blow to the party's momentum after it rose to the Official Opposition under Jack Layton in 2011.
Layton's widow and NDP champion Olivia Chow also got swept under by the Liberals, with Adam Vaughan holding on to the battleground of Spadina—Fort York. Chow had held the former Trinity—Spadina riding since 2006, but the newly created seat fell to Vaughan in the June 2014 byelection after Chow resigned to run in the Toronto mayoralty race.
"It's a huge win, because it's built on hope and hard work," Vaughan told a packed crowd of supporters Monday. "The urban agenda is back on the mainstage."
He promised that a federal Liberal agenda would also include affordable housing and transit, two key issues for the urban riding.
Rookie politician and former Toronto police chief Bill Blair took back Scarborough Southwest for the Liberals Monday. It was another reversal of the advances the NDP made in the 2011 election, when the seat turned orange for the first time in more than 10 years.
The NDP also lost its hold on Parkdale—High Park with Arif Virani taking the seat back for the Liberals. Toronto's western neighbourhoods have flipped back-and-forth between the Liberals and the New Democrats, with NDP MP Peggy Nash taking the riding in 2006 and in the orange crush of 2011, but losing it Monday and in 2008.
In Scarborough North the Liberals poached from the NDP as well, with Shaun Chen edging out Rathika Sitsabaiesan. The youngest Ontario MP picked up the riding in 2011, a win that was considered a sign of the NDP's breakthrough into new parts of Ontario.
Oliver concedes defeat
In Eglinton—Lawrence it looked, at first, like it would be a close race with the early results moving back-and-forth between Oliver and Mendicino. But Oliver conceded his seat long before all the polls reported as the gap between him and the Liberals widened.
"Unfortunately, I cannot share with you the result we all wanted, a second historic Conservative victory in Eglinton—Lawrence," he told his supporters Monday. "It was not to be."
Oliver was joined in his defeat by Immigration Minister Chris Alexander, after Alexander lost the Greater Toronto Area riding of Ajax to the Liberals.
The new riding of University—Rosedale remained a Liberal stronghold with incumbent Chrystia Freeland taking the seat by more than 8,000 votes with 186 polls reporting.
Bob Rae boosted the former riding's profile when he won a 2008 byelection and held on to the seat through two subsequent general elections before he resigned in July 2013.
In the rest of Toronto:
- Beaches—East York: Liberal Nathaniel Erskine-Smith elected, CBC projects
- Davenport: Liberal Julie Dzerowicz elected, CBC projects
- Don Valley East: Liberal Yasmin Ratansi elected, CBC projects
- Don Valley North: Liberal Geng Tan elected, CBC projects
- Don Valley West: Liberal Rob Oliphant elected, CBC projects
- Etobicoke Centre: Liberal Borys Wrzesnewskyj elected, CBC projects
- Etobicoke—Lakeshore: Liberal James Maloney elected, CBC projects
- Etobicoke North: Liberal Kirsty Duncan re-elected, CBC projects
- Humber River—Black Creek: Liberal Judy Sgro re-elected, CBC projects
- Scarborough—Agincourt: Liberal Arnold Chan re-elected, CBC projects
- Scarborough Centre: Liberal Salma Zahid elected, CBC projects
- Scarborough—Guildwood: Liberal John McKay re-elected, CBC projects
- Scarborough—Rouge Park: Liberal Gary Anandasangaree elected, CBC projects
- Toronto Centre: Liberal Bill Morneau elected, CBC projects
- Toronto—Danforth: Liberal Julie Dabrusin elected, CBC projects
- Toronto—St. Paul's: Liberal Carolyn Bennett re-elected, CBC projects
- Willowdale: Liberal Ali Ehsassi elected, CBC projects
- York Centre: Liberal Michael Levitt elected, CBC projects
- York South—Weston: Liberal Ahmed Hussen elected, CBC projects