Tim Hudak: Who's in the hunt to replace him?
Speculation about who will lead the Ontario PCs
Now that Tim Hudak has confirmed he will step aside as leader of Ontario's Progressive Conservatives, speculation as to who will replace him after such a dramatic election defeat has picked up momentum.
The PC party says it won't lay out rules for the leadership contest until next month, but the rumours are flying about who might run.
Ontario is home to several federal Tory MPs who could be contenders, including Patrick Brown, a backbencher from Barrie who says he is considering a run. "I have had some encouraging suggestions and it's something I would consider, but it's still very premature," said the 36-year-old Brown.
St. Catharines' MP Rick Dykstra is on the fence too.
"I've certainly kept my options open and am considering what that would be over the next months," he said.
Other high-profile Tories say they're fine where they are in Ottawa, despite hearing their names over and over in the speculation about the pending leadership race.
"My job is to focus on my job," said longtime Ontario politician Tony Clement.
Transport Minister Lisa Raitt was not definitively saying her plans this week either. "I like my job, I'm the minister of transport. It's a good job," she said.
Some MPs, like Mississauga—Streetsville MP Brad Butt, suggested choosing someone closer to Queen's Park.
Ontario PC MPPs Christine Elliott and Monte McNaughton, are both rumoured to be mulling a run for PC leader, as are Ottawa's Lisa MacLeod and northern MPP Vic Fedeli.