Marie-France Lalonde named federal Liberal candidate for Orleans

Marie-France Lalonde smiles during a news conference at the Queens Park Legislature in Toronto on Thursday Nov. 1, 2017. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young)

The federal Liberals have a name to put on the ballot in Orléans after a former star candidate announced months ago he would not be running again.

Marie-France Lalonde, who has been the Liberal member for Orléans at Queen’s Park since 2014, won the nomination contest to compete for a seat in Parliament Thursday night, defeating two other candidates.

The nomination means the Liberal Party now has a candidate in every Ottawa riding, but it also means the Ontario Liberals will lose yet another member, reducing their party to just five seats in the legislature.

Premier Doug Ford will have six months to call a by-election in Orléans. Ford must also schedule a by-election for Ottawa-Vanier by February, to replace Nathalie Des Rosiers, who left Queen's Park to become the Principal of Massey College.

Orléans was represented at the federal level by former Lt.-Gen. Andrew Leslie, who was part of the Liberal victory in 2015. He defeated Conservative MP Royal Galipeau, who had held the seat since 2006. Leslie announced in May he would not seek re-election in 2019.

Lalonde’s name will be on the ballot alongside David Bertschi (Conservative), Jacqueline Wiens (NDP), Michelle Petersen (Green), and Roger Saint-Fleur (People’s Party).

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