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Horwath stays on as Ontario NDP Leader

Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath THE CANADIAN PRESS/Aaron Vincent Elkaim.

Andrea Horwath will continue her position as Ontario NDP Leader.

Delegates held a vote during their annual convention in Toronto on Saturday to determine if Horwath would maintain her position or if they would be elect a new leader.

In the end Horwath received 77 per cent of the support with 811 votes.

“I’m grateful for today’s vote of confidence and the continuing trust of my party as we move forward together in our determination to build a fairer and more progressive Ontario,” she told the crowd. “As the only functioning opposition party at Queen’s Park, New Democrats will fight for a province with a real future that is shared fairly with the people whose labour will make it happen.”

Before the vote, many of the delegates had openly expressed anger at the party’s third place finish in the June 12 election, when the NDP also lost the balance of power because the Liberals won a majority.

With her job on the line, Horwath spoke to delegates about those concerns before the vote.

“I did talk about the lessons learned, about the fact that we need to not only talk about our first steps when we are talking to Ontarians during an election campaign, but also our broader visions and values,” said Horwath. “I think I made that very clear that’s been an ongoing discussion and I think it’s going to continue to be a discussion – which is a healthy thing for our party.”

Horwath triggered the provincial election after rejecting what was considered to be a very NDP friendly budget presented by Kathleen Wynne’s Liberals.

With files from The Canadian Press