Erin O'Toole Is the New Conservative Leader of Canada. But Who Is He? - 2020-08-24
At the end of a long, botched online leadership convention early Monday morning that saw the results delayed over six hours, the party declared O'Toole its new leader, beating Peter MacKay, the perceived frontrunner when the race started. The victory comes as the increasingly embattled Trudeau faces down several scandals and the resignation of his finance minister during the biggest economic crisis in a century.
O'Toole, 47, is a military veteran and former lawyer who has been an MP in a Toronto area riding since 2012. During his time in office, O'Toole served as the minister of veterans affairs under Stephen Harper and the shadow minister of foreign affairs. The leadership vote was decided via ranked ballots and O'Toole won on the third ballot with 57 percent of the votes. MacKay, despite winning the first ballot, finished with only 43 percent of the vote.
The leadership race had been on since December after former leader Andrew Scheer decided to step down following a disappointing showing in the 2019 election and questions about his use of party funds, including to pay for his children's private school tuition. During the race, O'Toole ran as the "true-blue" candidate and positioned himself to the right of MacKay, whom he repeatedly cast as "Liberal-lite."