In one of the most hotly contested ridings in Durham Region, Oshawa voters have chosen to return incumbent Jennifer French to Queen’s Park.
Throughout the Provincial election, the race between the NDP’s French and the new Progressive Conservative candidate Alex Down had been too close to call.
After the polls closed, French had earned 42.1 per cent of the votes, and Down had brought in 40.2 per cent — keeping the riding NDP orange with a 757 vote margin.
The results are likely not a shock for Oshawa constituents. From 1975 until 1995, the city had a long stretch of NDP MPPs. Then from 1995 until 2014, Oshawa elected Conservative MPP Jerry Ouellette for a legacy of 15 years. That’s when NDP candidate Jennifer French, a labor rights activist and teacher, first won the Oshawa seat at Queen’s Park.
In 2018 provincial election, the NDP were re-elected with almost 45 per cent of the vote, followed by the PC with close to 42 per cent. In contrast, the candidate with the next highest number of votes in the 2018 election (the Liberal candidate) had approximately 8 per cent.
In her campaign, French stressed the importance of supporting affordable housing, education, health care and people facing a skyrocketing cost of living.