Christine Elliott resigns as Whitby-Oshawa MPP
Elliott ran against Patrick Brown for PC leadership earlier this year
Toronto-area MPP Christine Elliott announced her resignation from Ontario's legislature, effective immediately, on Friday.
"This decision was not easy," the Whitby-Oshawa MPP said in a statement.
Elliott ran to lead the Ontario Progressive Conservatives earlier this year and was considered a front-runner right up until the vote, which saw Barrie MP Patrick Brown eventually win.
"While I put my name forward to lead our party, party members made a different choice. I fully respect our members' decision and I wish my colleagues and the Party every success in the future," Elliott said in her statement.
The politician, who has been an MPP since 2006, didn't announce what she'd be doing next but gave some hints.
"Although my role will change, I remain committed to advocating for a fully inclusive Ontario where all people can live lives of purpose and dignity," she said.
Premier Kathleen Wynne said Elliott was one of the most respected MPPs in the House.
"Ms. Elliott acted in the best interests of the people she represented and would work with anyone, regardless of political stripe, to bring positive change to her community and province," Wynne said in a statement. "In the legislature, Ms. Elliott could be the fiercest of adversaries in debate. She was passionate, but never personal."
Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath echoed Wynne's sentiment, saying "Christine always conducted herself with dignity and intelligence."
"Although we didn't always agree on politics, I have tremendous respect for her efforts in the Legislature and in her community, particularly to empower Ontarians with disabilities," Horwath said. "Christine By her example she inspired young women to get involved in politics."
Patrick Brown, the leader of the Progressive Conservative Party of Ontario, called Elliott "an esteemed member of our caucus."
Elliott lost the leadership race to the former Barrie MP last May.
"We appreciate her well wishes and in turn wish her the best as she embarks on this next chapter of her life," Brown said in a statement.