Photo: The new electoral district that Stittsville is a part of: Carleton.
The 2018 Ontario general election campaign is well underway, with writs issued on Wednesday and voting day set for June 7.
But unlike in the 2014 election, Stittsville does not have an incumbent representative to consider voting for. That’s because we are in one of 17 new districts added to account for recent population growth. Carleton-Mississippi Mills has been chopped up into three new ridings: Kanata-Carleton, Carleton (containing Stittsville) and Lanark-Frontenac-Kingston.
Carleton mirrors its federal counterpart of the same name, also a new creation for the 2015 election. (Although the riding at both levels has existed before.)
The MPP for the old riding, which still technically exists until after the election, is Jack MacLaren. He was infamously turfed from the Progressive Conservatives last year and so joined the right-wing Trillium Party. He’s running again next door in Kanata-Carleton.
WHO’S RUNNING IN CARLETON?
As of May 9, we have a few candidates:
- Goldie Ghamari is running under the PC banner.
- Theresa Qadri (who happens to be Coun. Shad Qadri’s wife) is the Liberal nominee.
- Courtney Potter is the NDP’s candidate.
- Gordon Kubanek is running for the Greens.
- Jean-Serge Brisson for the Libertarians.
- Kevin Harris for the Cultural Action Party.
- Mark Dickson as an independent.
- Jay Tysick — a former chief of staff to College Coun. Rick Chiarelli, Tysick was disqualified for the PC nomination in 2016 and flipped to the Alliance Party instead. Except he’s registered as an independent on Elections Ontario’s website.
- Evan Nightingale for the None of the Above Direct Democracy Party.
Most of Carleton is rural, with communities such as North Gower, Kars and Osgoode. But there are a few urban areas as well, with Stittsville one of the largest — and with nearly 34,000 residents, according to city estimates, candidates likely won’t want to ignore Stittsville. A mix of urban and rural issues, along with some universal ones like education and healthcare, should lead to a challenging campaign.
With a new riding, it’s always an open question how the polls will turn out. But the situation was much the same in 2015, when Pierre Poilievre was elected the only Conservative MP in Ottawa. Carleton then was a sea of blue, with Stittsville a standout red island.
To register to vote, or check if you already are, visit elections.on.ca.