Riding profiles: Long-standing incumbents re-offering in Ottawa Valley ridings

Article content

All three incumbents in the trio of Ontario ridings that surround Ottawa are running for re-election, with Conservatives Cheryl Gallant and Scott Reid both seeking their eight consecutive term in office.


Article content

Here’s a look at three ridings with triple-barrelled names: Lanark-Frontenac-Kingston, Renfrew-Nipissing-Pembroke and Glengarry-Prescott-Russell.


Population: 101,630 (2016)

Median household income: $74,725 (2015)

Median age: 48.5 (2016)

The candidates:  Scott Reid, Conservative; Michelle Foxton, Liberal; Steve Garrison, NDP; Calvin Neufeld, Green; Florian Bors, People’s Party of Canada

Conservative: Scott Reid has written extensively on official bilingualism and electoral reform. The son of Giant Tiger founder Gordon Reid, he has described himself as more libertarian than conservative. In his 21 years as MP, he has held nine “constituency referenda” to gauge constituents’ views on issues before the House of Commons — and votes according to their response.


Article content

Liberal: Michelle Foxton is a lawyer who was raised in Sydenham and served on South Frontenac Township council from 1998-2001. She comes from a family active in local politics — her father was reeve of Loughborough Township and warden of Frontenac County. Foxton runs a general law practice in Kingston. She is married and the mother of two boys.

NDP: Steve Garrison has been an elementary school teacher for 24 years. He was a Kingston city councillor between 2000 and 2010 and is a health care and labour activist. Garrison is divorced and has three children. He lives in Kingston.

Green: Calvin Neufeld is a writer and speaker on social justice issues. He founded Evolve Our Prison Farms, which advocates for transitioning new prison farms from a commercial-industrial model to a non-profit therapeutic model. Neufeld is a married trans man who lives in Perth.


Article content

People’s Party of Canada: Florian Bors is an IT worker who traded a townhouse in the Toronto area for a country home in Frankford, north of Trenton area in September 2020. Bors, who is married and has five children, is opposed to lockdowns and vaccine passports.

2019 results

Conservative: 30,077 (48.1 per cent)

Liberal: 15,441 (24.7 per cent)

NDP: 8,835 (14.1 per cent)

Green: 7,011 (11.2 per cent)

People’s Party of Canada: 1,117 (1.8 per cent)

What to watch for: It will be tough to break Reid’s grip on the riding. He first nudged out Liberal incumbent Ian Murray in 2000 as a Canadian Alliance candidate, and switched to become a Conservative candidate in 2004.

Since then, Reid has held a consistently strong showings at the polls, winning 48.77 per cent in 2004; 51 per cent in 2006; 55.88 per cent in 2008; 57,27 per cent in 2011; 47.9 per cent in 2015 (the first election after the electoral boundaries were changed) and 48.1 per cent in 2019.


Article content


Population: 103,495 (2016)

Median household income: $67,435 (2015)

Median age: 45 (2016)

The candidates: Cheryl Gallant, Conservative; Cyndi Mills, Liberal; Jodie Primeau, NDP; David Ainsworth, People’s Party of Canada

Conservative: Cheryl Gallant blasted to victory for the first time in 2000 as a Canadian Alliance Party candidate, beating Liberal incumbent Hec Couthier on the strength of opposition in the riding to the Bill C-68 gun control act. Clouthier ran as an independent in 2011 and 2015, losing both times to Gallant.

Liberal: Cyndi Mills is a journalist who produces a lifestyle magazine for military families and is vice president of the Upper Ottawa Valley Chambers of Commerce. A military spouse and mother of four, she lives Petawawa.


Article content

NDP: Lawyer Jodie Primeau was born and raised in Deep River and practiced law in Kingston before returning to Deep River in 2019 to found the area’s first female-run firm. She is the single parent of a daughter born in 2020.

People’s Party of Canada: David Ainsworth has a business experience from owner-operator to executive for a large corporation. The married father of two has a degree in political science and history and owns a hobby farm in Eganville.

The 2019 results

Conservative: 31,080 (52,72 per cent)

Liberal: 11,532 (19.56 per cent)

NDP: 8,786 (14.9 per cent)

Green: 3,230 (5.48 per cent)

People’s Party of Canada: 1,463 (2.48 per cent)

Independent (Dan Criger): 1,125 (1.91 per cent)

Indepdendent (Dheerendra Kumar): 917 (1.56 per cent)


Article content

Veterans Coalition: 358 (0.61 per cent)

Libertarian: 266 (0.45 per cent)

Independent (Jonathan Davis): 200 (0.34 per cent)

What to watch for: In her 21 years as an MP, Gallant has drawn fans as a constituency MP, but has also shown a talent for courting controversy. Earlier this year, Liberals accused Gallant of spreading “deranged conspiracy theories” after she said Liberals wanted all illicit drugs to be legal and wanted to normalize sexual activity with children during a video meeting with young Conservatives at Queen’s University.

But Gallant’s frequent contentious comments have done nothing to dampen her popularity with voters. In 2019, Gallant scooped up 52.72 per cent of the vote in 2019, with Liberal Ruben Marini coming in a distant second at 19.56 per cent. Gallant has only dropped below 50 per cent of the vote once, in 2015, and won 61.1 per cent in 2008.


Article content


Population: $109,975 (2016)

Median household income: $78,905 (2015)

Median age: 45.1 (2016)

The candidates: Francis Drouin, Liberal; Susan McArthur, Conservative; Konstantine Malakos, NDP; Brennan Austring, People’s Party of Canada; Jean-Serge Brisson, Libertarian;

Liberal: Francis Drouin joined the Liberal party at the age of 17, served as president of the Young Liberals and worked for former Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty and ran several campaigns before being elected in 2015. He has a degree in business administration from Collège La Cité and a commerce degree from the University of Ottawa.

Conservative: Investment banker Susan McArthur has over 30 years of experience in domestic and international banking and investing, including advising corporate clients on transactions including acquisitions and divestitures, public and private debt and equity financing and capital restructuring. She was the moderator for the final Conservative leadership debate scheduled in April 2017.


Article content

NDP: Konstantine Malakos grew in in Peterborough and studied acting in New York. He lived as an illegal immigrant for five years and was involved in activism to recognize same-sex marriage. He and his partner returned to Canada in 2011, and moved to a farm near Glen Robertson shortly before the election of 2019. He also ran as an NDP candidate in 2019.

People’s Party of Canada: Brennan Austring

Libertarian Party of Canada:  Jean-Serge Brisson was born in Embrun and opened up a radiator repair shop there in 1973, attracting attention after he started to refuse to collect sales taxes in 1991. He has been leader and president of the Libertarian Party of Canada and has run in two provincial and two federal elections.

The 2019 results


Article content

Liberal: 31,293 (47.56 per cent)

Conservative: 23,660 (35.96 per cent)

NDP: 6,851 (10.41 per cent)

Green: 2,113 (3.21 per cent)

People’s Party of Canada: 1,174 (1.78 per cent)

Libertarian: 262 (0.4 per cent)

Indpdendent (Daniel John Fey): 239 (0.36 per cent)

Rhinocerous: 199 (0.30 per cent)

What to watch for:  Liberal Don Boudria had a lock on the riding between 1984 and 2004. Conservative Pierre Lemeiux, an engineer and retired lieutenant-colonel, wrested the riding from the Liberals in 2006 after Boudria retired, ending a 44-year Liberal reign by only 203 votes.

Lemieux won by more than 5,000 votes in 2008 and more than 10,000 in 2011 before losing to first-time Liberal candidate Francis Drouin in 2015. Lemieux campaigned again in 2019 and lost again.

According to the bylaws in the Conservative Party of Canada’s constitution, candidates who lose two elections can’t run for a third time. Investment banker Susan McArthur was acclaimed as the Conservative candidate in the riding on Aug. 15. She will be up against Drouin’s considerable profile. McArthur does not live in the riding.

ALSO: Read other published riding profiles for the Ottawa region



    Postmedia is committed to maintaining a lively but civil forum for discussion and encourage all readers to share their views on our articles. Comments may take up to an hour for moderation before appearing on the site. We ask you to keep your comments relevant and respectful. We have enabled email notifications—you will now receive an email if you receive a reply to your comment, there is an update to a comment thread you follow or if a user you follow comments. Visit our Community Guidelines for more information and details on how to adjust your email settings.