Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty resigns

“It’s time for renewal,” McGuinty told his caucus. “It’s time for the next Liberal Premier, it’s time for the next set of Liberal ideas to guide our province forward.”
McGuinty announced on the evening of Oct. 15 that he would remain as Premier until the next liberal leader is chosen.
He told reporters that two recent events influence him to resign from office. With his wife, Terri, at his side, he said the wedding of his daughter, Carleen, last month reinforced the importance of family and friends to him.
“I thought it wasn’t going to be that big a deal,” said McGuinty. “You know, they had been dating for 13 years. But I found it actually to be pretty emotional to be there with her and my family and my extended family.”
The other event, he said, was the Liberal Party’s Annual General Meeting in Ottawa two weeks ago. Delegates strongly endorsed his leadership, but said his responsibility is to the future of renewing the party. “That told me it was time,” said McGuinty.
Dalton’s mother, Elizabeth, told the press she thinks her son is the best Premier Ontario ever had.
“He is a big boy and he knows what he’s doing,” she said. Elizabeth resides in Ottawa, the city where she raised nine children including David McGuinty, who is a Federal Liberal MP.
“He keeps everybody involved and feels very strongly for his workers,” she said.
Upon McGuinty’s resignation, there has been speculation that he is planning a jump to federal politics by seeking the leadership of the federal Liberals. He did little to quash the speculation.
“I’m not making any plans whatsoever beyond my team of duty here at Queen’s Park,” he told reporters on the night of Oct. 15.
When pressed specifically as to if he was closing the door on running, McGuinty laughed and said, “All I said is I don’t have any plans.”
McGuinty met with Lieutenant-Governor David Onley earlier on Oct. 15 to ask him to prorogue the legislative. McGuinty said it was necessary to have all legislative business grind to a hault, including the daily Question Period, because his government has reached an impasse with labour leaders and the opposition over its plans to freeze wages.
The time away from the legislature, he said, will provide an opportunity for his government to negotiate directly with labour leaders and the opposition “free of the heightened rancor that has sadly too frequently characterized our legislature of late.”
With McGuinty resigning, many of his colleagues are being scrutinized including Chris Bently, Energy Minister, who is facing accusation over his refusal to release documents to a legislative committee last May. The finance committee was supposed to determine by Nov. 19 whether he should be held in contempt. With the legislature prorogued, the committee’s work was also grounded to a hault.
Some politicians from other parties are upset with McGuinty’s decision to prorogue the government. Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Hudak praised McGuinty’s contribution to the province of Ontario, but criticized his decision to prorogue the legislature, saying it was not in the best interest of Ontarians.
“Given the scope of the challenges that our province faces now is not the time to close down the legislature and walk away,” Hudak told the press.
New Democratic Party Leader Andrea Horwath urged McGuinty to reconsider the prorogation, which she said would do a “disservice to the people of this province”.
The legislature will not resume until a successor to McGuinty is chosen.

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