Liberal Marie-France Lalonde is the new MP for Orléans
Lalonde gave up provincial seat to run for federal Liberals
Liberal candidate Marie-France Lalonde won the riding of Orléans Monday night.
Saying in May that it was time for him to "take a new path," Liberal MP Andrew Leslie announced he wouldn't be running for re-election in Orléans, leaving the area's most populous riding up for grabs.
At her victory party, Lalonde said she was filled with emotion and relief.
"I'm very grateful. I said from the beginning that we needed to keep this seat red," she said.
She acknowledged the division across the country, but said it's important for parliamentarians to work on everyone's behalf.
"I am a firm believer that as you reach out and you listen, you consult, you find an approach that will work for the most," she told CBC Radio's Ottawa Morning.
Lalonde said while provincial cuts were difficult, a federal Conservative government's would have been worse.
"Certainly [Doug] Ford's record is terrible, but [Andrew] Scheer's cuts would have been worse, and certainly we cannot afford his cuts, certainly to our public servants here in this riding."
She pointed to the Ontario premier's cancellation of a Francophone university in 2018, which she believes sent the message that Franco-Ontarians were not important, and it was the federal Liberals that swooped in to try to save the project.
Thirty per cent of the riding's constituents list their first language as French.
Green Party candidate Michelle Petersen, who has experience working at CALACS, the area's francophone sexual assault support centre and Roger Saint-Fleur of the People's Party were also on the ballot.
Orléans in 2015
With files from CBC Radio's Ottawa Morning