MacLauchlan hints at what his future may hold at speaking engagement

Wade MacLauchlin made only passing reference in a speech Wednesday to his election defeat just hours earlier.

Outgoing P.E.I. premier says he has 'no pretention of hanging on'

Wade MacLauchlan delivered the keynote address to the P.E.I. Atlantic Immigration Summit on Wednesday. (Brian Higgins/CBC)

P.E.I.'s outgoing premier hinted at what his future may hold at an event early Wednesday.

Wade MacLauchlan's keynote address at an immigration conference in Charlottetown made only brief and lighthearted reference to his defeat in Tuesday's provincial election.

"I don't know how many places in the world, we have an election yesterday, plus the Leafs out of the playoffs, and the premier — still the premier — kind of walks in, without a body guard, with no pretention of hanging on," said MacLauchlan.

CBC has not spoken with MacLauchlan directly about what he intends to do after losing his seat to PC Bloyce Thompson Tuesday.

MacLauchlan spoke for a little over 23 minutes, without notes, to delegates at the P.E.I. Atlantic Immigration Summit. He credited new immigrants for driving growth in P.E.I.'s population and economy over the past decade.

"They're coming for a job and all the settlement that comes with that," said MacLauchlan. "Other provinces are looking at it, wondering how we kind of pulled into the fast lane."

MacLauchlan honoured his commitment to speak at the summit, following defeat in Tuesday's election. (Brian Higgins/CBC)

MacLauchlan's participation in the summit had been planned before the election was called. At the conclusion of his remarks, he departed quickly and declined further comment. 

MacLauchlan's Liberal Party now finds itself where it's never been before — sitting in third place. MacLauchlan watched Tuesday night's election results with family, friends and local supporters in Stanhope.

"We've had a peaceful election. We'll have a peaceful transition and I intend to be a resident of MacMillan Point in West Covehead," said MacLauchlan Tuesday night. "To be here with my family and my neighbours and other Islanders to continue to make a success of this great province."

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