Nfld. & Labrador

NDP's Jack Harris looking to take Ottawa seat back from Liberal Nick Whalen

To a standing ovation and the surprise of no one, Jack Harris will be the NDP's candidate for St. John's East when Canadians go to the polls in October.

Former Noia CEO Bob Cadigan seeking Conservative nomination in riding

Former MP Jack Harris addresses a room full of supporters as he looks to get back his old job back. (Jeremy Eaton/CBC)

To a standing ovation and the surprise of no one, Jack Harris will be the NDP's candidate for St. John's East when Canadians go to the polls in October. 

The longtime New Democrat said his reason for running in his 11th election was clear. 

"I still have the belief that I have a contribution to make," Harris said at the the party's nomination meeting Tuesday night in St. John's, where he was acclaimed. 

"I feel strongly about what we have to offer as a party."

Jack Harris brought in NDP MP Charlie Angus to help with his announcement on Tuesday night. (Jeremy Eaton/CBC)

Harris was upset by Liberal Nick Whalen in 2015 as the province of Newfoundland and Labrador went totally red; with Whalen taking 48 per cent of the vote and Liberals taking all seven federal seats.

With NDP MP star Charlie Angus by his side, the two took jabs at the Liberal party, the members of parliament representing this province and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for not following through on campaign promises. 
 
"We do need to have other voices in Ottawa," said Harris.

"There are serious problems that need to be addressed and we don't hear them addressed. I think that has got to change."

Competition in St. John's East

Earlier on Tuesday Bob Cadigan, the former president and CEO of Noia which represents the oil and gas industry sent out a statement laying out his intentions to seek the Conservative nomination in St. John's East. 

"I've seen the representation that we have in Ottawa, and to be honest, I think we need a stronger voice," Cadigan said. 

"I think I can be that stronger voice."

Bob Cadigan sets his sights on the Conservative nomination in St. John's East is seen here in this 2017 CBC photo. (Paula Gale/CBC)

Cadigan said he is seeking help from some former provincial politicians.

"I've reached out to some former premiers to get their sense on what the issues are," he said.

"I think former premier Brian Peckford sees me as a champion for the Atlantic Accord that he originated. I think I can do the job."

Cadigan wouldn't say who else he's been in touch with, but that it will come out if he gets the nomination.

The race in St. John's East is heating up with months to go until people actually vote on Oct. 21.  

CBC News contacted Nick Whalen's office for a comment on Tuesday's two announcements but did not immediately receive a reply. 

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