Wade MacLauchlan resigns as P.E.I. Liberal leader

Wade MacLauchlan is stepping down as leader of P.E.I.’s Liberal Party, the party announced in a news release Friday.

MacLauchlan failed to win his seat in April 23 provincial election

Wade MacLauchlan embraces P.E.I. PC Leader Dennis King after a leaders' debate during the 2019 provincial election campaign. (Brian McInnis/CBC)

Wade MacLauchlan is stepping down as leader of P.E.I.'s Liberal Party, the party announced Friday in a news release that also included MacLauchlan's letter of resignation.

The resignation will take effect when an interim leader is chosen, MacLauchlan's letter said.

MacLauchlan failed to win his seat in District 8 Stanhope-Marshfield in the provincial election on Tuesday.

MacLauchlan has served as P.E.I. premier since February, 2015. After 12 years with a majority government, the Liberals were reduced to third-party status when Islanders voted on Tuesday. The Progressive Conservatives won 12 districts, the Green Party eight and the Liberals six.

In his resignation letter dated April 25 and addressed to Marilyn Lowther, acting president of the Liberal Party of Prince Edward Island, MacLauchlan said it was an "honour" to serve as leader during a "time of real achievement for our party."

'Let's keep working!'

"I am confident in the future of the Liberal Party of Prince Edward Island and of our great province. What we have achieved together has been all about team work. Let's keep working! Thank you again to you and all who have contributed to our collective success," MacLauchlan's letter said.

In its news release, the party said P.E.I. "has achieved tremendous success over the past four years" under MacLauchlan's leadership, including record job creation  and investments in social programs. 

"Wade MacLauchlan's commitment to Prince Edward Island is unwavering and it has been a privilege to have him as our leader. We wish him all the best in his future endeavours," it said.

Premier-designate Dennis King issued a statement thanking MacLauchlan for his years of service to P.E.I., and wishing him well.

"Wade should be commended for his time as Leader of his party and for his commitment to Islanders through his public service," he said.

"As premier, Wade represented Prince Edward Island well on the national stage and has many policy achievements during his time in office."

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