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PostPosted: Thu Oct 26, 2017 8:19 am    Post subject: James Aylward elected as leader PEI PC party Reply with quote

( perhaps the most low profile leadership race we've seen in Canada in a while , hadn't even heard it was taking place , either way the pc's in PEI finally have a new leader and seem ready for the next election which is 2 years away )

UPDATE: James Aylward selected as new leader of P.E.I. PC party

Teresa Wright teresa.wright@theguardian.pe.ca
Published: Oct. 20, 2017, 8:57 p.m. Updated: Oct. 23, 2017, 3:49 p.m.

Brad Trivers, left, raised James Aylward's arm in victory Friday night at the PC party leadership convention in Brudenell. Aylward won the leadership vote over Trivers with 1,685 votes to Trivers' 1,107. TERESA WRIGHT/THE GUARDIAN

GEORGETOWN-ROYALTY - James Aylward’s second run at leadership the P.E.I. Progressive Conservative party was the charm.

Aylward was elected leader of the PC party Friday evening, handily winning the race with 1,685 votes, which was over 500 more votes than rival candidate Brad Trivers received.

But there was no sense of rivalry among the two during the leadership convention at the Rodd Brudenell River Resort Friday. Each candidate praised one another during their rally speeches before the result was announced, and afterward Aylward immediately called Trivers to share the stage with him.

Trivers called on his supporters to throw unanimous support behind Aylward, and the crowd in the room erupted in cheers and a standing ovation.

“It’s an amazing feeling to have this kind of support from the entire party,” Aylward said.

“I couldn’t ask for anything more.”

Aylward says he believes his experience as an MLA in office since 2011 and his previous run at leadership in 2015 were key in helping convince members to choose him as party leader this time around.

“I truly feel Islanders are looking for change,” he told reporters Friday evening.

“We’re going to collectively, with our caucus, roll out a plan to move forward and show Islanders that we are ready to govern.”

The race began six months ago and was characterized as lacklustre by political pundits.

But Aylward says he kept his nose to the grindstone, making 6,500 phone calls and clocking over 30,000 kilometres in travel across the Island in his bid to become the top Tory in P.E.I.

It’s a job he firmly believes will take him to the premier’s office and the PC party into government after the next provincial election.

“We’re going to formulate a really grassroots platform, we’re going to support small business, we’re going to reinforce communities from one end of the Island to the other,” he said.

“We’re going to do, essentially, the opposite of what this current government is doing.”

Aylward also placed heavy focus Friday on a desire for the party to win another seat in the legislature in an upcoming byelection that must be held within the next six months to replace former education minister Doug Currie in Charlottetown, who resigned from office on Thursday.

Capturing this seat from the Liberal government before the next election could help boost Islanders’ perceptions of the PC party’s ability to be successful in the next provincial election, Aylward said.

“I think it’s a bit of a litmus test of how the government is failing Islanders, and it’s also a true barometer of the faith that they are going to put in the next government of P.E.I. — and that’s a Progressive Conservative government.”

Trivers offered his congratulations to Aylward on his win and pledged to work alongside him, both in the legislature and under Aylward’s leadership, to help build the party’s fortunes.

“What an achievement. He’s been working at this for a long time with a lot of great supporters,” Trivers said.

The two have a breakfast meeting planned for Saturday morning before the party’s annual general meeting convenes, where Aylward says the real work of building the party’s policies and platform will begin.

“At our AGM, we will collectively, as members of this great party and Islanders in general, we will roll up our sleeves and will begin the process of working towards forming government in 2019. We can do it.”


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 26, 2017 8:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

James Aylward wins P.E.I. Progressive Conservative leadership

‘Believe in better’ slogan resonates with voters as Aylward wins leadership bid

By Cody MacKay, CBC News Posted: Oct 20, 2017 3:00 PM AT| Last Updated: Oct 20, 2017 10:29 PM AT

'Right now we have a very major task in front of us, we have a byelection coming up in the next few months,' Aylward said.

James Aylward is the new leader of P.E.I.'s Progressive Conservative party.

The Stratford-Kinlock MLA defeated lone competitor Brad Trivers at the PC leadership convention at the Rodd Brudenell River Resort Friday night by a vote of 1685 to 1107.

Aylward waved and cheered as he was named the new leader, thanking Trivers for a tightly contested race and inviting him on stage.

"Let's be unanimous in supporting James Aylward as next party leader," Trivers said, handing the podium to Aylward.

"We have a lot of work ahead of us," Aylward said as he took the podium.

'We will win that byelection'

Aylward turned his attention to the byelection coming up following the recent resignation of Liberal MLA Doug Currie.

"Right now we have a very major task in front of us, we have a byelection coming up in the next few months," he said.

"The caliber of people coming forward are second to none, you're going to be incredibly amazed at the individuals seeking that nomination — we will win that byelection," he added.

Kerry Campbell/CBC
Aylward and Trivers raised hands following the announcement. Aylward says work on forming the future of the party begins tomorrow, after breakfast with Trivers. (Kerry Campbell/CBC)

Aylward said work starts Saturday with the PC Party's annual general meeting — after having a post-convention breakfast with Brad Trivers that morning.

"We will collectively … roll up our sleeves and begin the process of working towards forming government in 2019," he said. "We will do this and we need you there with us."

2,799 ballots cast

Following Aylward's speech the people in attendance clapped and cheered.

Former premier Pat Binns won the 50/50 draw, but donated his share back to the party.

All eight current PC caucus members were in attendance for the leadership convention.

Margaret Anne Walsh, interim president of the P.E.I. PC Party was at the convention on Friday night, as was former federal MP Gail Shea and former P.E.I. PC leader Rob Lantz.

2,799 ballots were cast in the leadership bid — including the seven spoiled ballots.

The party's search for a new leader began with the resignation of Rob Lantz following the 2015 provincial election. Jamie Fox took on the role of interim leader.


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 26, 2017 8:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

P.E.I. PCs back on track, says former premier Pat Binns

Retired politician recommends finding an issue to make party stand out

By Gail Harding, Posted: Oct 20, 2017 7:00 AM AT| Last Updated: Oct 20, 2017 11:09 AM AT

Former premier Pat Binns says the P.E.I. PC Party is doing well and has a good chance to win the next election.

As the P.E.I. Progessive Conservatives prepare to learn who their new leader will be, former Premier Pat Binns says the party is on the right track for the future.

"To be honest, I think everyone was concerned about the conservative party and where it was going," he said.

"It had some tough years and it seemed to have some infighting for awhile and people not getting along."

Binns, who still keeps a close eye on the party, said this wasn't inspiring confidence in the electorate — but a big turnaround has helped.

"The two leadership candidates, by their nature, are two friendly outgoing people who people like and they're not fighting with each other and I think their caucus all gets along pretty good."

Find the issue

Binns said between the election of a new leader, improved co-operation among party members, and the Liberal government being in power for a while, anything could happen in the next election.

"Sometimes it's just a couple of good issues that will make a difference."
■Aylward, Trivers review key issues en route to leadership finale

Binns, whose served as premier for three terms,said that when he was leader and the PCs were elected, the party didn't have any more going for it than it does at this time.

"But we latched onto a couple of good issues — one was the GST — it was coming in across the country and we said no."

Binns said people identified with the issue and it differentiated the PCs from their rivals.

"In the lead up to the election, that's what the conservative party is going to have to do, find the issue," he said. "I don't know what the issue is, but the issue that makes them stand apart."

It will be announced Friday which leadership candidate — MLA James Aylward or MLA Brad Trivers — will lead the party.

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James Aylward elected as leader PEI PC party

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