OTTAWA — The polls have just closed in two federal ridings where byelections are being held today.
The byelections are being held in Quebec”s Lac-Saint-Jean, left vacant with the retirement of longtime Conservative MP and former cabinet minister Denis Lebel, and Edmonton”s Sturgeon River-Parkland, which opened up after former interim Conservative leader Rona Ambrose quit politics to join a Washington-based think tank.
Twenty-six-year-old Dane Lloyd is expected to easily hold the Edmonton seat for the Conservatives, despite a history of making controversial social media posts, including referring to women”s advocates as “Feminazis” and starting a Facebook campaign to create a Canadian chapter of the National Rifle Association.
But the Lac-Saint-Jean contest is thought to be a four-way fight, with the Tories, Liberals, NDP and Bloc Quebecois all in the hunt.
The byelections are being held in the midst of controversy for the governing Liberals over Finance Minister Bill Morneau”s personal finances and his proposed tax reforms for small business.
They”re also a first test for newly minted Conservative and NDP leaders, Andrew Scheer and Jagmeet Singh.