Saskatchewan NDP leader Cam Broten loses his seat
Close race in Saskatoon Westview between Broten and Sask. Party’s David Buckingham
It was a tight race in the Saskatoon Westview riding where NDP leader Cam Broten waited to learn whether he'd win his seat. In the end, the constituency went to the Saskatchewan Party by 232 votes.
The winner was David Buckingham, who received 49.2 per cent of the vote while Broten followed closely at 46.3 per cent. The win was not announced until almost 11:30 p.m. CST.
The election was a disappointment for both Broten and his party, which won only 10 seats.
Addressing a room packed with supporters in Saskatoon at the NDP headquarters for election night, Broten said "This isn't quite the night we were hoping for."
"This is not the results that so many of us worked so hard for. But in a democracy the election belongs to the voters."
Buckingham was not considered a star candidate for the Saskatchewan Party. He previously was the mayor of the Village of Borden for two terms and a councillor for one. He moved to Saskatoon in 1979 to pursue a career in the car hauling business as a commercial driver, according to the party website.
Earlier in the night, Premier Brad Wall congratulated Broten on his campaign. He also mentioned that Broten called him and told him to go ahead with his victory speech while Broten waited for the results on his own constituency.
"He has called and graciously congratulated us on our win and I want to congratulate him on his campaign and thank him and all his candidates," Wall said.
It was a tense scene at NDP headquarters in Saskatoon at the Bessborough Hotel where people watched for the results in the leader's riding.
NDP Heaquarters. Packed. Waiting for Cam Broten result. Nervous bunch? You bet. <a href="https://twitter.com/CBCSask">@CBCSask</a> <a href="https://t.co/qVCjpZO36Y">pic.twitter.com/qVCjpZO36Y</a>—@Devin_Heroux
This was the first election for the party leader. Broten took the job after narrowly beating Ryan Meili in a leadership race in 2013. Broten won by a margin of just 44 votes.
"I know Cam Broten well and nobody works harder," Meili said at NDP headquarters on Monday night.
"He's been up against a difficult battle. The Brad Wall machine is not an easy one to overcome."
Meili said there were some positive stories in the election, but he had hoped to see more progress for the party. He said that in the future he would like to see the party focus less on the ruling party`s mistakes and look towards the future of the NDP.
Saskatoon Riversdale NDP MLA Danielle Chartier also said that Broten has worked extremely hard as party leader.
"Cam has been a wonderful leader," she said.
Whether Broten will maintain his position as party leader has not been announced.
- This story incorrectly stated Buckingham received nearly 57 per cent of the vote and Broten followed at almost 55 per cent. The story has been corrected.Apr 05, 2016 1:51 AM CT