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Pierre Poilievre is crowned Conservative leader on first ballot

Keean Bexte

September 11, 2022

Pierre Poilievre is the new leader of the Official Opposition after winning the Conservative Party leadership race on the first ballot with 68% of voters’ support.

Pierre Poilievre is crowned Conservative leader
Pierre Poilievre is crowned Conservative leader.

He beat out former Liberal Party of Quebec leader Jean Charest, Conservatives MPs Leslyn Lewis and Scott Aitchison and former Ontario MPP Roman Baber.

Poilievre beat Charest by large margin — Charest came in second with 16% of voter support. 

Lewis, the social conservative in the race, received 9%.

Baber received 5% of the vote, while Aitchison received 1%.

The results were announced at the Ottawa Shaw Centre on Saturday night after a lengthy program which had viewers begging for the results.

Upon winning, Poilievre addressed a roaring crowd of supporters who cheered “freedom.”

Poilievre took to the stage and began by acknowledging the passing of Queen Elizabeth II, who he said modelled dignity, civility, humility and service.

He said the journey has begun to replace a government who has stolen your life with the cost of living crisis.

“This is not my victory, it is yours,” he said.

Poilievre also thanked the other candidates, including Baber who he said stood up for freedom. Lewis stood up for families and faith, he said. The new leader thanked Charest for his service to Canada.

Many viewed Charest as a liberal-lite candidate, while Poilievre stuck to his conservative principles. Former Conservative prime minister Stephen Harper also endorsed Poilievre.

This year saw some of the most significant numbers of people signing up to join the Conservatives. Before winning, Poilievre claimed to have signed up almost 312,000 new members to support his bid for the leadership.

The leadership race also saw the Conservative party break 2020 membership sales records. The party sent out 678,000 ballots to Conservatives across the country. 

“There is unprecedented interest in joining the Conservative Party of Canada,” said CPC President Rob Batherson in June.

The Poilievre campaign sold nearly 312,000 memberships.

He will now take over for former interim Conservative leader Candice Bergen and face off with Justin Trudeau directly once the House of Commons returns.

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