Essex riding belongs to Lewis again

Essex riding belongs to Lewis again

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Conservative MP Chris Lewis appeared to have captured his second victory at Essex on Monday, while for the second time holding back the challenge for Tracey Ramsey — formerly a term in a period in the NDP before losing to Lewis in 2019.

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Two years ago, Lewis withdrew a bit of a surprise by defeating Ramsey by more than 4,500 votes. The race this time ended similarly with Lewis up by nearly 6,260 votes Tuesday morning, with only mail-in ballots to be counted.

“In October 2019, people in Essex put their trust in me,” Lewis said. “It was a huge responsibility that I did not take lightly; and an honor that I am incredibly proud of, but have never taken for granted.

“Thank you for the honor of serving you again as a Member of Parliament for Essex. My goal is certainly our economic future, but just as big a priority is to end divisive politics and bring unity back to Essex. ”

Liberal candidate Audrey Festeryga was a distant third with about 15.4 percent of the vote.

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Ramsey had remained frustrated since he was defeated by Lewis two years ago after what she believed was four years of providing Essex with a strong representation in Ottawa while serving as an MP.

I always respect the will of the voters.

She had supported former longtime Conservative MP Jeff Watson in the 2015 election, so Lewis was still an opportunity to regain stranglehold for the party in Essex.

Before the polls closed Monday, Ramsey said this time she felt a different kind of energy from the 2019 election she lost to Lewis.

“From start to finish, we had lots of people coming into the campaign who were new to us,” she said. “It was young people in high school and at university. It was new faces and that is very encouraging for us. ”

Ramsey said when voters answered the door, they told her how much they liked NDP leader Jagmeet Singh.

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“Since 2019, people had gotten to know him as a leader,” she said. “There was definitely a lot of love for him.”

To get Singh to perform in the Windsor-Essex region three times during the campaign, she said “it’s flattering that the leader is trying to get you back in Parliament.”

She said Singh reached out to her right after her loss in 2019 and told her he wanted Ramsey’s vote back in parliament.

Tracey Ramsey, NDP candidate for Essex riding, speaks with optional volunteers in Essex City on Election Day, September 20, 2021.
Tracey Ramsey, NDP candidate for Essex riding, speaks with optional volunteers in Essex City on Election Day, September 20, 2021. Photo by Taylor Campbell /Windsor Star

“The support has been there since 2019,” she said.

But it did not end enough to win the riding back.

“I always respect the will of the electorate,” Ramsey said. “Really, I want to keep doing the work I do in our community because I know how important it is.”

Liberal candidate Audrey Festeryga felt in her third federal campaign in Essex that she was able to gather more contact with voters during her door-to-door visit this time, but wished she had more time to expand these compounds.

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“I wish it had been a little longer of a campaign,” she said. “The voters seemed happy to see me, and I felt that our policies resonated with them. I got a lot of positive feedback. We got the call, gathered quickly and hit the ground. But would I wish we had a week or two more? Absolutely.”

Given that the Liberal Party retained a liberal minority government on Monday, she said it was frustrating for the riding “not to have a seat at the table.”

Nancy Pancheshan, the Green Party’s green candidate for the Essex ride, had her second run in the political office after hoisting the colors of the Green Party in the 2018 provincial election.

“I can tell you there’s a difference between the two,” she said. “This time there is much more focus on climate change. For the past two years, our country and the planet have had extremes of every kind.

“I appreciate that the Greens are not close to winning, we need to do more between elections.”

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