Nfld. & Labrador

Hillier 'probably' not running for N.L. leader

Retired general Rick Hillier says he has no plans to run as leader of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Retired general Rick Hillier says he has no plans to run as leader of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Hillier, who was born in Newfoundland and Labrador, is one of the people who has been suggested as a possible leadership successor to former premier Danny Williams, who officially retired from politics Friday, Dec. 3.

Hillier was asked about it Wednesday night by CBC's George Stroumboulopoulos.

"No, I don't plan on running. I have no plan to run," Hillier said. "Here's what I'll say: Newfoundland and Labrador has some incredible leaders both back on the Island and across the rest of the country and perhaps indeed around the world," said Hillier.

"We're going to find the right leader to replace Danny Williams, who is incredible. And we're going to make sure Newfoundland and Labrador is the strong province it needs to be, inside this awesome country of Canada, and it's probably not going to be Rick Hillier."

He said he's spent the past 2½ years telling people he won't run.

Hillier was appointed chancellor of Memorial University of Newfoundland in late June 2008, just days before he retired from the Canadian Forces on July 2, 2008.

Newfoundland and Labrador Natural Resources Minister Kathy Dunderdale was sworn in as the province's 10th premier Friday, but has said she won't seek the permanent position as leader at the Progressive Conservative Party convention to be held in the spring.

A provincial election is scheduled for October 2011.