Ontario PC Leader Tim Hudak is rejecting calls for a review of his leadership, telling reporters Monday that he is going to lead his party to victory.
Hudak spoke with reporters for the first time since the Aug. 1 byelections, which saw the Progressive Conservatives claim only one of the five seats up for grabs in the Ontario legislature.
The PC leader touted the party’s first win in Toronto in more than a decade. It was in the riding of Etobicoke-Lakeshore, where Doug Holyday was elected as the new MPP.
The Tories could not take away the other available Toronto seat, in the riding of Scarborough-Guildwood, which Mitzie Hunter was able to retain for the governing Liberals.
In total, the Liberals hung onto just two of the five seats that were vacated by former members of the government. The New Democrats picked up two seats, while the Tories had just the single seat in Toronto.
"We should neither be thrilled with the byelection results nor despondent," Hudak said.
"We actually got the most votes of any party, the most votes in the city of Toronto."
Ten PC party members are trying to enact a constitutional change to allow the Tories to have a leadership review at a conference in London, Ont., next month.
On Monday, Hudak said the party should unite behind him.
"We could, you know, circle and shoot among ourselves, or we could actually get together as a team. We can forge forward, we can build on our gains," Hudak said.
"We've got to get the province of Ontario back on track. I'm the guy to do that and I will lead us to victory."
Hudak was elected as PC leader four years ago. He has led the party through a single election, which saw the Liberals reduced to a minority government.
Following that election, Hudak received more than 78 per cent support from party members during the ensuing automatic leadership review.