Kevin Klein jumps to provincial politics as Tory candidate in Winnipeg byelection
Nomination meeting, in which Klein is expected to be acclaimed, will be held Nov. 14
Kevin Klein has unofficially secured the Progressive Conservative nomination for the upcoming byelection in the provincial riding of Kirkfield Park in west Winnipeg.
The former city councillor, fresh off an unsuccessful bid to become Winnipeg's mayor, is now focusing his attention on another level of government.
"There were others that were interested" in the Kirkfield seat, but Klein was the only PC candidate to file papers by the Nov. 3 deadline, Premier Heather Stefanson said.
A nomination meeting in which Klein is expected to be formally acclaimed as the Tory candidate will take place Nov. 14.
The former publisher of the Winnipeg Sun newspaper and one-term city councillor for the Charleswood-Tuxedo-Westwood ward ran to become mayor of Winnipeg in the Oct. 26 municipal election.
Klein finished third, more than 24,000 votes behind winner Scott Gillingham.
Days later, Klein announced he would seek the Kirkfield Park nomination. The riding became vacant in June when Scott Fielding decided to step down from politics and leave government.
A date for the byelection has yet to be set by the governing PCs, although provincial law requires it to be held by Dec. 13.
Stefanson is not ready yet to announce the election date.
"The deadline is coming up and it will be between now and that deadline," she said.
When it does happen, Klein will be up against corrections officer Logan Oxenham (NDP), CancerCare research nurse Rhonda Nichol (Liberal) and semi-retired IT professional Dennis Bayomi (Green).
Kirkfield Park is north of the Assiniboine River in west Winnipeg, extending just beyond the Perimeter Highway. It is bordered on the south by the river, on the north by Portage Avenue and a portion of Ness Avenue, and on the east by Mount Royal Road for the most part.
Although the seat belonged to the NDP from 2007-16, it has otherwise been Progressive Conservative since its inception. It was created by redistribution in 1979 but began its formal existence in the provincial election of 1981.
The next Manitoba general election is scheduled for Oct. 3, 2023, but Stefanson could call it early.
Her predecessor, Brian Pallister, called the last election in 2019, a year ahead of its scheduled date. The PCs were riding high in opinion polls at the time and won a second consecutive majority mandate.
Stefanson faces different circumstances. Opinion polls over the last two years have consistently suggested the Tories have seen their support drop sharply while the Opposition New Democrats have surged.
- An earlier version included a map and information saying Kirkfield Park's eastern boundary runs along Moray Street. In fact, it now runs along Mount Royal Road.Nov 09, 2022 7:44 PM CT