West-Nepean voters head to polls for Thursday's MPP byelection - Metro US

West-Nepean voters head to polls for Thursday’s MPP byelection

Voters in Ottawa West-Nepean head to the polls Thursday to elect a new member of provincial parliament.

The position was vacated in February when Jim Watson stepped down to run for mayor this coming fall. Watson had held the position since 2003 when he defeated Progressive Conservative Gary Guzzo by nearly 3000 votes. He defended the riding 2007, winning by nearly 9000 votes.

Watson has already served one brief term as mayor in 1997.

After months of speculation that he would return to municipal politics, he made it official by announcing his candidacy in January, becoming the third high-profile Liberal to step do so.

Former Deputy Premier George Smitherman is running for mayor in Toronto. He is running against former federal Liberal Party director Rocco Rossi.

Liberal candidate Glen Murray, who was once the mayor of Winnipeg, won the byelection to replace Smitherman in his Toronto Centre Riding.

Another provincial byelection is also taking place in Leeds-Grenville on Thursday, after the MPP for that riding, Bob Runciman, was appointed to the Senate.

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