Hamilton will have at least three new faces representing local ridings after all the votes have been counted following the September federal election.
Canadians will be heading to the polls on Sept. 20 following the calling of a snap election from Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau on Sunday.
For the first time in long time, Hamilton has three ridings in which an incumbent will not be returning — Flamborough-Glanbrook Conservative MP David Sweet, NDP Mountain MP Scott Duvall and East Hamilton-Stoney Creek Liberal MP Bob Bratina.
Former city mayor and political analyst Larry Di Ianni says the fact there will be newbies and a potential vacuum in city politics if Redhill area (Ward 5) councillor Chad Collins becomes the MP for East Hamilton-Stoney Creek is cause for excitement among political watchers.
“If indeed he, Chad Collins, happens to be successful then there’s going to be a new face at the local council table as well,” Di Ianni said.
“So there’s an echo effect there, and some repercussions not only at the federal scene, but at the local scene as well.”
Henry Jacek, professor of political science at McMaster University, says Collins joining the Liberals along with former mayoral candidate Vito Sgro as a candidate in Flamborough-Glanbrook could make those races interesting, as the pair were vocal detractors of Hamilton’s $3.4 billion LRT, supported by the Liberals.
“Collins has been stronger in saying he really doesn’t want it,” Jacek said.
“It’s going to be interesting, particularly if the NDP or the Conservatives say that we can’t give up that money. That’s a tremendous amount of money and other places in the country would be happy to take.”
Jacek says name recognition with Collins should help the Liberals fend off the NDP in East Hamilton-Stoney Creek who have had the riding taken away from them in 2015 by another recognizable face, former mayor Bob Bratina.
Name recognition could be at play on Hamilton’s Mountain with Duvall’s departure and CHCH TV reporter Lisa Hepfner becoming the Liberal candidate after beating out Bruno Uggenti for the nomination on Monday night.
Duvall, a former city councillor, had been the MP since winning a nomination battle in 2015 following MP Chris Charlton’s resignation.
The NDP have held the riding for over 15 years and Jacek says that and Hepfner’s profile will make for a fascinating battle.
“She’s been a TV personality in the news for many, many years. So she’s got that going for her,” Jacek said.
“But the NDP organization on Hamilton Mountain is very strong and it’s been strong since it has really had that riding since 2006.”
So excited! Officially the #LPC candidate. Tonight I thank my team for standing behind me. I thank the Liberals of #HamOnt Mountain for standing for me. And now I’m asking the residents of the Mountain, stand with me, with us, & together we’ll move forward. For everyone. #cdnpoli pic.twitter.com/Jvvr5J2IHK
— Lisa Hepfner (@lisahepfner2021) August 17, 2021
Di Ianni says another wildcard is the length of the election which is only 36 days – one of the shortest time periods allowed by law – which likely means campaigns will be “media-driven.”
“They may do some media advertising in the local paper or maybe radio, but they are going to rely very, very heavily upon their name recognition,” said Di Ianni
“But, the fortunes of the leader, the party and how they’re presented in the general campaign itself, that’s going to determine how people vote I suspect.”
Jacek believes a number of the ridings neighbouring Hamilton will be battles between the NDP and Liberals with potentially a new one in Brantford after Conservative MP Phil McColeman announced he was not seeking re-election.
He also expects a close battle in St. Catharines between Liberal incumbent Chris Bittle and Conservative Krystina Waler.
“People have a chance to go to vote in an election that really may be relatively close,” Jacek said.
“So everybody’s vote is going to matter. It’s going to be very interesting.”
There are 338 ridings in Canada, and Global News will be keeping track of changes in all of them up until and during the election on Sept. 20.
Here is a list of all the current MP candidates up for election in the Hamilton-area, Burlington, Brant County and Niagara Region:
Liberals: Vito Sgro Conservatives: David Muys NDP: Lorne Newick Green: Martin Smith People’s Party Of Canada: Bill Panchyshyn
Liberals: Margaret Bennett Conservatives: Fabian Grenning NDP: Matthew Green (incumbent) People’s Party Of Canada: Kevin Barber
Liberals: Chad Collins Conservatives:Ned Kuruc NDP: Nick Milanovic
Liberals: Lisa Hepfner Conservatives: Al Miles NDP: Malcolm Allen
Liberals: Filomena Tassi (incumbent) Conservatives: Bert Laranjo NDP: Roberto Henriquez Green: Victoria Galea
Liberals: Karina Gould (incumbent) Conservatives: Emily Brown NDP: Nick Page Green: Christian Cullis People’s Party Of Canada: Jonathan Earl
Liberals: Alison Macdonald Conservatives: Larry Brock NDP: Adrienne Roberts People’s Party Of Canada: Cole Squire
Liberals: Karen Matthews Conservatives: Leslyn Lewis People’s Party Of Canada: Kenneth Gilpin
Liberal: Vance Badawey (incumbent) Conservatives: Graham Speck NDP: Melissa McGlashan Green: Kurtis McCartney People’s Party Of Canada: Michael Kimmons
Liberals: Andrea Kaiser Conservatives: Tony Baldinelli (incumbent) NDP: Brian Barker Green: Melanie Holm People’s Party Of Canada: Peter Taras
Liberals: Ian Bingham Conservatives: Dean Allison (incumbent) Green: Joanna Kocsis
Liberals: Anita Anand (incumbent) Conservatives: Kerry Colborne NDP: Jerome Adamo Green: Oriana Knox People’s Party Of Canada: Michael Bator
Liberal: Pam Damoff (incumbent) Conservatives: Hanan Rizkalla NDP: Lenaee Coubrough-Dupuis People’s Party Of Canada: Gilbert Jubinville
Liberal: Chris Bittle (incumbent) Conservatives: Krystina Waler NDP: Trecia McLennon Green: Catherine Rhodes People’s Party Of Canada: Rebecca Hahn