Incumbent Conservative Dan Albas is back in the driver’s seat for a fourth consecutive term in the riding of Central Okanagan-Similkameen-Nicola.
With all but one of the 247 poll locations within the riding reporting their results as of the morning of Sept. 21, Albas leads second-place candidate Liberal Sarah Eves by a wide margin, with 28,051 votes, or 45.9%. Eves currently has 14,337 ballots to her name, or 23.5%.
New Democratic Party candidate Joan Phillip has ran a close race behind the Liberal candidate, sitting at 12,606 votes. Kathryn McDonald of the People’s Party of Canada has garnered 4,484 votes, while the Green Party’s Brennan Wauters brings up the rear with 1,641 votes.
The first projection for Albas to be declared the winner came at around 8:30p.m. PST by the Canadian Press, with around 40 of the 247 polls reporting in. Approximately one and a half hours later, Albas spoke on his victory.
“Thank you to all of the people that waited in lines to make sure that their voice was heard and their ballot was counted. Thank you to the Elections Canada staff, that have had to go through a hectic, 36-day election, and to go through a pandemic election was not an easy thing.”
Albas also thanked the other candidates in the riding, saying that Canadians are “well served” when given a number of choices.
“It’s a big honour to be a member of parliament. It’s a big responsibility because we have a lot of issues facing our country right now, and whether it be focusing on the fourth wave pandemic and dealing with the issues that are coming from that, and getting us onto a proper recovery so we can return to normalcy.”
He stressed the issue of the amount of division that has been created throughout the short campaign period between voters.
“We need to heal, and we also need to hold the government to account for its promises.”
Albas was first elected to Parliament in 2011 for the then-riding of Okanagan-Coquihalla. The boundaries of the riding were changed for the 2015 election, with the name changed to Central Okanagan-Similkameen-Nicola, when Albas was re-elected to his seat.
His third term ran from the 2019 federal election until the 2021 election.
Fellow Conservative Tracy Gray was re-elected in the riding of Kelowna-Lake Country, while Frank Caputo, also representing the Conservatives, will take the seat for Kamloops-Thompson-Cariboo.
Liberal Prime Minister Justin Trudeau first called the snap election on Aug. 15. By the end of Election Day on Sept. 20, he and the Liberal Party had mostly performed simply a cabinet shuffle, once again winning a minority government that had already been in place.
As of the morning of Sept. 21, the federal Liberal Party is projected to win 158 seats in the House of Commons, compared to Erin O’Toole’s Conservatives at 119 seats, who will form the Official Opposition Party.
Yves-Francois Blanchet and the Bloc Quebecois are once again projected to finish third with 34 seats, while Jagmeet Singh and the NDP’s are set to take 25 seats.
The Green Party, led by Annamie Paul, is projected to take two seats in Parliament, though Paul herself came in fourth in her riding in Southern Ontario.
The People’s Party of Canada, though seeing an increase in votes from the 2019 election, once again failed to secure a seat, including leader Maxime Bernier falling to Conservative Richard Lehoux in his home riding of Beauce, Quebec.