Mike Redmond reflects on time as leader of NDP after stepping down
Redmond says results were a factor but not an 'enormous' one
Mike Redmond, the former leader of the NDP on P.E.I., resigned Wednesday night after reviewing the recent District 11 byelection loss with the party.
Redmond, the leader of the party for five years, acknowledged the results were a factor, but the fourth place showing was not the only reason for his departure.
"It's not always about the election results, it's about the message that the NDP carries and we are a social justice party," he said.
"That doesn't always translate into election wins but it's a message that we've carried for decades and will continue to carry."
A balanced life
Redmond says the past two years have been particularly taxing with provincial and federal elections as well as two byelections.
"It's been very very difficult to balance life, and family, and my studies and the farm," he said.
"At some point you have to make a decision who you're going to put first and I have to start to put my family first."
It was an honour and a privilege for me to be able to go from tip to tip across P.E.I. … and listen to concerns of everyday Islanders.- Mike Redmond
Redmond said he fulfilled a promise he made to the party and himself, that he would run in two elections, and that at this juncture he feels he is making the best decision.
"I think the time is right for some new leadership in the party and for the party to go in a different direction," he said.
"I think it's always difficult to know when it's time to exit, but it's time. And I'd like to go on and do some other things, and put some time into other ventures."
'An honour and a privilege'
Redmond said the biggest challenge he faced during his time as leader was getting his message across, but he wouldn't change anything about how he conducted himself as leader.
"I don't think you can change things because those are learning opportunities and you can't grow as a person or as a party if you don't go through those occasions," he said.
When you get invited to somebody's table it's a very very personal issue of politics and I really enjoyed that opportunity.- Mike Redmond
Redmond said he enjoyed his time as leader, getting to know Islanders, though he was disappointed he wasn't able "to do more for Islanders."
"It was an honour and a privilege for me to be able to go from tip to tip across P.E.I. … and listen to concerns of everyday Islanders," he said.
"When you get invited to somebody's table it's a very very personal issue of politics and I really enjoyed that opportunity."
Redmond said he doesn't have plans to re-enter politics but wouldn't definitively rule out the possibility.
"I would never say never."
MORE P.E.I. NEWS l More French students than ever on P.E.I.
With files from CBC:Island Morning