Doug Ford, the leader of the Ontario Progressive Conservatives, has won a second majority government with a landslide victory that saw him boost his seat count from 2018 and force both of his primary competitors to resign.
In 83 of the 124 ridings, Ford’s PCs have been elected or are in the lead. The NDP will be the official opposition, with 31 seats elected or leading, while the Liberals are in third place with eight seats elected or leading.
Guelph has remained in the hands of the Greens, while Haldimand-Norfolk is being led by an independent candidate. When the news of the projection was announced, a crowd gathered at the Toronto Congress Centre in Etobicoke erupted in cheers.
“What a night and what a result – together, we have accomplished the unthinkable – we have made history… amazing, I am just so happy, so appreciative for your support, it’s what keeps me going,” Ford told the gathering.
The Ontario Progressive Conservatives look to have received more than 41% of the vote, which is similar to their 2018 showing.
He claimed in a short address that he felt he had extended what it meant to be a Progressive Conservative in Ontario, and that he had refocused the political debate on the economy.
“If you’ve been worried about your job at the local car factory, I want you to know that we’re investing in the future of the auto sector, and if you’re a student looking for a job in the IT sector, I want you to know that we’ll have a job waiting for you.”
You have my word that I will get up every day, go to work, and do everything in my power to make this dream a reality.”
During the five-week campaign, his team claimed to have knocked on three million doors, and his senior official was overjoyed.
The incumbent for Etobicoke North ran a careful “front-runner” campaign, holding few events where reporters might question him and turning down multiple requests for one-on-one interviews.
Instead, the 57-year-old organized massive outdoor photo chances and indoor rallies with supporters to promote his party’s commitments on infrastructure such as Highway 413.
During the campaign, Ford led in most polls, with many this week putting him more than 10% ahead of the Liberals and even farther ahead of the NDP.
Steven Del Duca lost his Vaughan-Woodbridge riding, and Andrea Horwath said that she would resign down as leader following the election.