UPDATE: Sandra Pupatello is Getting Back Into Politics


Sandra Pupatello is getting back into politics.

The former Windsor West Liberal MPP and Ontario cabinet minister will hold a campaign kick-off Friday as she is expected to make the long rumoured jump to federal politics.

Pupatello was first elected to the Ontario Legislature in 1995 and served at Queen's Park until 2011.

During that time she held a number of high profile cabinet positions for the Liberals under Premier Dalton McGuinty, including minister of economic development and trade, minister of community and social services and minister of education.

In 2013, she made an attempt to secure the Ontario Liberal Party leadership but lost to Kathleen Wynne.

Pupatello has scheduled a news conference for 4 p.m. Friday at the Fogular Furlan Club, where she is expected to announce she's seeking the Liberal nomination in the riding of Windsor West.

University of Windsor Political Science Professor Lydia Miljan says Pupatello carries a star quality and name brand.

Speaking on AM800's the Lynn Martin Show, Miljan says Windsor West was Pupatello's riding provincially, so she already has support.

"Remember when she was in provincial politics, she won handily every single one of her races, and not just by a plurality but by a strong majority," she says. 

Miljan admits the race will be a tough one to call.

"Brian Masse is also really popular," she says.  "Last time around he got 51 per cent of the vote, while it might be relatively easy for her to win the nomination, it will be quite the battle between the two of them in the race."

Also seeking the nomination in the riding are Melinda Munro and Hsiao D'ailly.

If she receives the nomination, Pupatello would be running against incumbent New Democrat M-P Brian Masse, Henry Lau of the Conservatives, and Darryl Burrell of the People’s Party of Canada.

The federal election is October 21.