Conservative Ted Falk is headed back to Ottawa after scoring another convincing victory and his third mandate as the Member of Parliament for Provencher.
Falk celebrated at his campaign office in Steinbach with a large crowd of supporters, though the mood was dampened by declarations of a Liberal minority government before Falk’s own re-election was confirmed.
With 172 of 193 polls reporting on Monday, Falk had claimed 27,826 votes. The Liberals Trevor Kirczenow followed with 5,478. NDP candidate Erin McGee received 5,244. Green Party candidate Janine Gibson garnered 2,498. People’s Party candidate Wayne Sturby scored 1,000 tallies.
Falk said he was pleased with the new mandate.
"I am so encouraged by those type of results. You know you wonder sometimes if people are happy with the kind of representation that you provide and the position you take on different issues…I’m feeling that I have lots of support."
A Liberal minority was not the result he hoped for, but Falk took solace in the belief that, because of the minority situation, Canadians will be back at the polls in the next two years.
"I’ve always thought that an NDP government would be worse than a Liberal," he mused, noting some sort of coalition can now be expected between those two parties.
"That will interesting to see how that shakes out. As Conservatives, we’ll have our work cut out for us keeping them accountable and hopefully they don’t completely break the bank when they are done two years from now."
Falk spoke of the Liberals’ track record of broken promises expressing hope that progress is made on pipeline construction and that government spending is reined in.
"Obviously we’re not going to see the carbon tax go away," he added.
"I’m very disappointed by that. I think that’s going to make it tougher for Canadians to live and it will have to eventually reflect itself in the price of goods and services.
Still, Falk looked at the 20 percent increase in his party’s seat totals as a place to build from, though he acknowledged the results of election will have still to be reviewed.
"The party will evaluate where the wheels came off on the campaign and where we dropped the ball."
Falk, an early supporter of Andrew Scheer, maintained confidence in his leader.
"I haven’t wavered. I think he still would have made a great prime minister," Falk said, while acknowledging it would be up to Scheer and perhaps the party to consider the future of the party leadership.
Falk said he looks forward to tackling Provencher issues including continued work on improving cell phone service and advocating for infrastructure projects.
"Many of our municipalities have infrastructure needs that they have expressed to me. There’s several reeves and mayors here this evening celebrating with us and I know they’ve got some significant infrastructure asks, including the multiplex here in Steinbach," he noted.
"I’m going to be working to ensure I can secure as much federal funding for them as I can."