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Will Ontario’s Next Premier be a Woman?

Pupatello, Wynnne frontrunners in leadership race

By Kristina Skorbach
Epoch Times Staff
Created: January 23, 2013 Last Updated: January 24, 2013
Related articles: Canada » National
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TORONTO— As Ontarians await the results of the provincial Liberal Party leader’s race this weekend, the field has narrowed to a few unlikely hopefuls and two strong female contenders.

Of the two frontrunners—Sandra Pupatello and Kathleen Wynne—Pupatello seems to have the upper hand thus far.

Out of the 1,857 delegates who cast their ballot during the first round of voting at the Leadership Election Meeting Jan. 12 and 13, Pupatello garnered 27.4 percent while Wynne earned 25.2 percent.

On Wednesday, Pupatello’s campaign website also reported that she had earned the support of over 100 ex-officio delegates, while Wynne had 82 out of the 419 possible. Ex-officio candidates include former MPPs and riding association presidents.

If either of the women wins, it will be the first time there has been a female Premier of Ontario. Five of Canada’s provinces are currently governed by women.

In November, seven liberal candidates signed up for the race, which included Glen Murray, Eric Hoskins, Charles Souza, Gerard Kennedy, and Harinder Takhar. In early January, Murray dropped out and backed Wynne.

Pupatello has focused her campaign on creating more jobs for Ontarians. 

As the ex-minister of Social and Community Services, Pupatello rolled out “The Plan Forward,” a platform aimed at making improvements in social services like developmental services, affordable housing, and social assistance. 

The second and final ballot for all the candidates will take place on Saturday during the Ontario Liberal Party 2013 Leadership Convent at the Maple Leaf Gardens in downtown Toronto. Ballots will be drawn just after 12 noon.

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