South Winnipeg a 'three-way race' after shakeup: Political analyst
Published Tuesday, October 27, 2015 5:25PM CST Last Updated Tuesday, October 27, 2015 8:00PM CST
A political shakeup in south Winnipeg Tuesday as a veteran politician bowed out, and a rookie entered the ring.
Longtime Seine River MLA and former Health Minister Theresa Oswald made a decision on her future.
The Liberals, meantime, introduced a new candidate in the same constituency.
A familiar face in the Manitoba Legislature for the past 12 years, Oswald said Tuesday she won't be seeking re-election in April 2016.
"I was ready to do something different,” said Oswald. “After three terms I think it's really important to allow new blood into the party."
Oswald made a bid for the NDP leadership and was one of five rebel cabinet ministers who led a revolt against Premier Greg Selinger last year over the PST hike.
Despite their history, Selinger said he wanted Oswald to run again.
"She certainly had a commanding role in that seat and knew the community extremely well, having grown up in that area,” said Selinger. “There's no question it's a hole to fill for sure."
Peter Chura hopes to fill the job, but for the Liberals.
Party Leader Rana Bokhari introduced the former news anchor and reporter as their candidate for Seine River on the same day Oswald made her announcement.
"We were willing to face her in an election,” said Chura. “I was looking forward to actually knowing someone who was in the race, it would've made it a little more comfortable, actually. I like Theresa, she's a nice lady."
The Tories already have a candidate in place in Seine River. Janice Morley-Lecomte will run for the Progressive Conservatives in a constituency that could be hotly-contested.
"At this point in time it's almost more of a three-way race," said Probe Research Vice President Curtis Brown.
Brown said Oswald's absence in the race may benefit the Conservatives, who have been targeting the seat, but he said don't count out the Liberals in Seine River.
"Attracting somebody who's pretty well-known like Peter Chura is helpful to them in terms of showing that they're serious and they have momentum," said Brown.
Oswald said she'll finish her term as MLA before deciding what to do next.
The provincial election is slated for April 19, 2016.