New Conservative leader to be announced this weekend

(From left to right) Leslyn Lewis, Derek Sloan, Erin O'Toole and Peter MacKay. (Photos courtesy of John Balca, Danman2110, manningcentre, Erin A. Kirk-Cuomo via Wikipedia)

The likely challenger to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in the next federal election will be announced this weekend.

With ballots due on Friday, the Conservative Party of Canada will formally announce the results of its leadership election in Ottawa on Sunday.  Registered Conservative voters will choose between one of four candidates — Erin O’Toole, Derek Sloan, Leslyn Lewis, and Peter MacKay.

A total of 269,469 Conservative members have received ballots to vote, making the leadership race one of the largest in the country’s history, according to the party. The election is being done entirely using postal ballots.

The election was originally slated for June 27 but the party decided on March 26 to postpone the leadership race due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

“Our Leadership Election Organizing Committee is excited to be able to finally announce the Conservative Party’s next leader and we want to thank all the candidates for their hard work over the past eight months to get here,” said Dan Nowlan, co-chair of the Leadership Election Organizing Committee, in a news release.

A Conservative leadership election was called after current Leader Andrew Scheer announced his intentions to step down from his position back in December of 2019.