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Quebec MP Pierre Nantel has joinedElizabeth May’s Green Party after his dismissal from the NDP Friday.
Nantel was dismissed from the NDP, both from the caucus as well as having his candidacy removed, on August 16 following “confirmed reports” that he was “is in discussions with another party to run under their banner,” reports CBC.
At the time, Green Party Leader Elizabeth May confirmed that she had been in contact with Nantel for nearly a year regarding the possibility of coming on board.
It wasn’t clear how soon Nantel would be swapping parties, but May was optimistic, and said that she was hoping to make an announcement on the matter “very, very soon.”
According to iPolitics, the swap may be a result of the steep decline in NDP popularity across Quebec over the last four years, which Nantel may believe is hampering his own popular appeal by proxy.
As iPolitics reports, “Nantel was first elected in the so-called Orange Wave election in 2011, where Quebec sent 59 NDP MPs to Ottawa. After winning nearly 52 per cent of the vote in 2011, Nantel was re-elected in 2015 with only 31.2 per cent of the vote, narrowly besting his Liberal rival by 1.21 percentage points.”
NDP deputy leader Alexandre Boulerice also mentioned that Nantel had mentioned increasing worry over the state of the environment and his desire for an immediate response to combat climate change.
This swap means that the Green Party now has 3 sitting MPs, while the NDP now must work quick to find a replacement representative for the Longueuil-Saint-Hubert riding.
“The NDP will start the process of nominating a candidate in the riding of Longueuil-Saint-Hubert so that people in the riding can elect an MP that is on their side and will put their interests first,” said Melissa Bruno, NDP national director.