Fragiskatos elected in London North Centre for a third time

London North Centre MP Peter Fragiskatos speaks to reporters at his constituency office on Adelaide St., December 18, 2018. (Photo by Miranda Chant, Blackburn News)

It was a tight race, but voters in London North Centre have decided the riding will stay Liberal.

Incumbent Peter Fragiskatos of the Liberal Party has secured his third victory in the 44th federal election. Elections Canada had Fragiskatos pulling in 36 per cent of the vote with 150 out of 187 polling stations reporting. Prior to the results coming in, he held a tight lead over runner up Dirka Prout of the New Democrats who trailed by about 2,000 votes.

In third was Stephen Gallant of the Conservatives, followed by People’s Party candidate Marc Emery and Mary Ann Hodge of the Green Party.

Fragiskatos told Blackburn News London early Tuesday morning that “it’s the biggest honour” and he’s grateful the riding has chosen to trust him for the third time.

A large issue during this election centred on how the government plans to get the country through the COVID-19 pandemic.

Fragiskatos acknowledged getting Londoners through the pandemic is a priority, however there are several other issues he plans to continue working on.

“I want to make sure that the progress we’ve been able to make through the federal program known as the National Housing Strategy continues. It is the federal government’s answer to homelessness,” Fragiskatos said. He added child care and climate change are also issues the Liberal incumbent plans to bring forward to parliament in the coming months as his riding’s constituents, regardless of their political affiliation, have brought the topics to his attention.

Fragiskatos has held the riding since 2015. The area has primarily stayed red since the early 2000s, apart from when Conservative Susan Truppe who turned the area blue in the 41st federal election in 2011.

When asked about how another minority government will affect Londoners who may be feeling frustrated by the results, Fragiskatos said he plans to fight for all voices.

“Politics doesn’t matter to me. What matters to me is democracy and representing people,” said Fragiskatos. “I want to continue to listen. That is the key to politics, that is the key to making meaningful change.”

While Fragiskatos plans to get right back to work serving the area, he added he is especially looking forward to the next several months ahead as he and his wife Katy anticipate the birth of their daughter sometime next month.