Dowdall returns to Ottawa after “Groundhog Day” election night



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Conservative Terry Dowdall returns to Ottawa to represent the riding of Simcoe-Gray.


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The incumbent received increased support from constituency voters based on the election results.

With all of the Simcoe-Gray polls released Tuesday afternoon, Dowdall received 33,734 votes and 47 percent of the votes cast. This is an increase from the 32,812 votes and 43.5% of the ballots that made Dowdall the region’s MP for the first time in 2019. Former Mayor of Canton Essa and longtime Simcoe County Councilor entered federal politics in Simcoe-Gray after Kellie Leitch decided not to run until the 2019 election. Dowdall won a four-person Conservative nomination contest and was elected to the House of Commons shortly thereafter.

On Tuesday, he was happy with the outcome but still couldn’t understand why an election was called in the first place, especially now that members of the House of Commons will return with much of the same political landscape.

“It’s kind of like Groundhog Day,” Dowdall said. “The common theme throughout this campaign that I heard was why do we have this election? The number one thing. People are frustrated. . . it doesn’t make sense and I don’t think there is a single leader who is happy with the results.

Liberal Party candidate Bren Munro was second in Simcoe-Gray with 28% of the vote and a total of 19,721 votes. Both figures are lower than the party’s figures in 2019.

NDP candidate Lucas Gilles courted 14% of the votes cast in the riding, 9,684 votes, an increase from 2019, when the Green Party finished third locally.


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People’s Party candidate Adam Minatel won 7% of the vote, 5,374 votes, ahead of Green Party candidate Nicholas Clayton who received 4% of the vote, or 2,797 votes. The People’s Party’s vote share increased by almost five percent in 2021 compared to 2019 with almost 4,000 additional votes cast.

Finally, Christian Heritage Party candidate Ken Stouffer won 373 votes, or one percent of all votes cast in the constituency.

Dowdall and his campaign team returned congratulatory phone calls and put away road signs on Tuesday. He said he was optimistic that he could move forward on issues of concern in his riding even when he returned to Ottawa as a member of the official opposition with another Liberal minority government at the helm.

“We worked together during the pandemic. It was strictly – as far as I’m concerned – the Liberals thinking there was an opportunity to get a majority government and go from there, ”he said. “We will work together. I don’t think anyone wants another election.

Dowdall said he was returning to Ottawa to advance local issues such as the quality of life for Simcoe-Gray seniors, rural internet access and affordable housing. Housing market homes such as Collingwood, Wasaga Beach and The Blue Mountains are found within the riding limits.

He also wants to advocate for investment in local hospitals which he says both need major upgrades.

“We should invest more in Canada. That’s why I’m going to push. We have to spend money here because there are people here going through the cracks right now and this has even been seen before COVID, ”said Dowdall.


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More than 32,000 of the approximately 129,000 people who live in Simcoe-Gray voted early before the election.

Dowdall continues his nearly two-decade stint in public service. He previously served as Mayor of the Township of Essa and Deputy Warden of the County of Simcoe.

He has served three terms on the board of directors of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities and is the owner of local commercial property and a small business.

Dowdall lives near New Lowell and is married with two daughters.

The riding of Simcoe-Gray covers the communities of Blue Mountains, Collingwood, Wasaga Beach, Springwater, Essa, New Tecumseth and Adjala-Tosorontio. It also includes CFB Borden.



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