Sudbury

Lack of candidates before federal election 'kind of normal' says former MP

With five months to go until the federal election, there are still lots of blank spaces on the ballots in northeastern Ontario.

NDP says it will be announcing 'star candidate' in Nickel Belt riding as October 21 election nears

Several parties have yet to announce their candidates for the upcoming federal election, but a former MP says it's not unusual. (Nathan Denette/Canadian Press)

With five months to go until the federal election, there are still lots of blank spaces on the ballots in northeastern Ontario.

All three major parties still have several candidates slots to fill.

There's been talk nationally of how far the NDP and Liberals are behind the Conservatives in their quest for candidates, but Claude Gravelle, a Sudbury-area NDP organizer and former Nickel Belt MP said that's not the case.

"It's kind of normal," he said. "The last few elections we've had some nomination meetings a week prior to the election, so people are saying we're having a hard time finding candidates, we're not."

Gravelle said the NDP will soon be unveiling a "star candidate" for his old riding in Nickel Belt.

Meanwhile, the Conservatives have quietly chosen their candidates for the Sudbury area.

Aino Laamanen is running again in Nickel Belt, while newcomer Pierre St-Amant got the nod for the Tories in the Sudbury riding.

Sault Ste. Marie police officer Sonny Spina was chosen as the Conservative candidate in that riding last month. 

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