No fresh faces in new Ontario cabinet

Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty announced his new cabinet on Thursday afternoon.
Ontario's new cabinet ministers have been sworn in. Mike Crawley reports. 2:03

The men and women who will be in charge of Ontario's health care, highways and schools were introduced on Thursday. 

Ontario cabinet

  • Dalton McGuinty, Premier and Intergovernmental Affairs.
  • Ted McMeekin Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.
  • John Gerretsen, Attorney General.
  • Eric Hoskins, Children and Youth Services.
  • Charles Sousa, Citizenship and Immigration.
  • Madeleine Meilleur, Community Safety and Correctional Services, Francophone Affairs.
  • John Milloy,Community and Social Service.
  • Margarett Best, Consumer Services.
  • Brad Duguid, Economic Development and Innovation.
  • Laurel Broten, Education, Women's Issues.
  • Chris Bentley, Energy.
  • Jim Bradley, Environment.
  • Dwight Duncan, Finance.
  • Harinder Takhar, Government Services.
  • Deb Matthews, Health.
  • Linda Jeffrey, Labour, Seniors.
  • Kathleen Wynne, Municipal Affairs and Housing and Ministry of Aboriginal Affairs.
  • Michael Gravelle, Natural Resources (Forestry).
  • Rich Bartolucci, Northern Development and Mines.
  • Michael Chan, Tourism and Culture.
  • Glen Murray, Training, Colleges and Universities.
  • Bob Chiarelli, Transportation and Ministry of Infrastructure.

But Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty's new cabinet doesn't contain many new faces.

The new 22-member cabinet is actually a lot like the old cabinet.  Every minister who won re-election on Oct. 6  is back and there's not a single rookie among them.

"I have chosen the tried and the tested and the experienced," said McGuinty.

The most significant change is that the energy portfolio goes to Chris Bentley.

The former energy minister, Brad Duguid, now gets the task of creating jobs as economic development minister.

The new cabinet is six members smaller than the one before the election, with some ministers doing double duty.

Toronto's Kathleen Wynnne will be minister of both municipal affairs and aboriginal affairs.

Ottawa's Bob Chiarelli will handle transportation and infrastructure.

The biggest ministries stay in the same hands - Dwight Duncan as finance minister and Deb Matthews will head health.

"We have to make sure every penny we spend on health care is spent well and we've got some challenges to get there," said Matthews.

McGuinty is holding out an olive branch to the opposition saying his government will welcome constructive ideas.

"We will judge an idea not on the basis of where it originates, but where it can take Ontario," he said.

The opposition isn't impressed.

"He's essentially bringing back the same cabinet that he had before, and I think he had an opportunity to give a signal to Ontarians that he's prepared to understand there are some changes that need to happen," said NDP house leader Gilles Bisson.

"There was a real opportunity for the government to signal to the population that this was not going to be the same status quo government, and it's a bit of a doubling down."

Progressive Conservative Peter Shurman echoed that concern, saying the premier isn't signalling things will be different this time around.

"Einstein said that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result," he said outside the Tories' first caucus meeting since the election.

"These are the same people who got us into this mess. They are not going to get us out of this mess."

Still, both parties have said they are willing to work with the government, with Bisson praising the choice of the non-partisan John Milloy as Liberal house leader, saying he sees that as a sign of good faith from the premier.


With files from The Canadian Press