On August 15, two days before Nova Scotians voted in the 41st provincial election, prime minister Justin Trudeau visited governor general Mary Simon at Rideau Hall to dissolve parliament. This triggered the issuing of election writs and started the 36-day campaign for Canada's 44th federal election. This election call came early, more than a year ahead of the fixed federal election date, which was set for October 2023. Now Canadians head to the polls on Monday, September 20. To help you get ready, here's a look at Nova Scotia's 11 electoral ridings—where all but one is represented by Trudeau's Liberals—and who's running for a seat in parliament.
In the Halifax riding, Liberal Andy Fillmore is hoping for re-election. He's up against former NDP MLA Lisa Roberts, who resigned from provincial politics to run in the federal race. Cameron Ells is running under the Conservative banner and former Green interim leader Jo-Ann Roberts is also running in the downtown riding. B. Alexander Hebert is representing thee PPC. The Halifax riding includes the peninsula and extends toward Spryfield.
With former Parliament House speaker Geoff Regan retiring after 24 years as Halifax West's MP, Lena Metlege Diab is running under the Liberal banner. The former provincial immigration minister announced in June that she'd take a run at the federal seat. Metlege Diab, a lawyer, was first elected to the Nova Scotia legislature in 2013. She's up against Conservative Eleanor Humphries, the NDP's Jonathan Roberts and Green Party's Richard Zurawski, a former city councillor. Julie Scott is running for the People's Part of Canada. This riding covers the west end of Halifax and Bedford, Upper Hammonds Plains, Tantallon and Terence Bay.
Liberal Darren Fisher is running for re-election in the Dartmouth-area ridings. The former Halifax city councillor has been MP since 2015. He's running against small business owner Kevin Payne representing the NDP and activist Rana Zaman with the Green party. Michelle Lindsay is running under the populist People's Party of Canada banner.
Tom Myers, the one-time Conservative candidate for the Dartmouth riding, dropped out of the race on August 30 following an allegation of sexual assault. The Conservative party did not replace him with a candidate in this riding. Myers, the CEO and librarian of the South Shore Public Libraries, denied the accusation, but said in a Facebook post that "for the best interests of my loved ones and my colleagues and career I have taken the difficult decision to (step) back from politics." Myers did not respond to a request for comment.
On August 29, recent provincial NDP candidate Lauren Skabar shared on Twitter that she met Myers in October 2019 at a Nova Scotia Library Association conference. During the conference Myers referred to himself as Skabar's "future boss" and commented on "that tiny skirt" before tugging on the hem, she says in the post.
"Before I could say anything, he put his hand up the back of my skirt and into my underwear. When I objected, he told me that was no way to talk to my 'future boss.'" Skabar says in the post. Skabar says she's "very relieved" Myers withdrew from the race.
Incumbent Liberal MP Lenore Zann is up for re-election, facing off against Stephen Ellis for the Conservatives, Dan Osborne for the NDP, Jillian Foster for the Greens and Bill Archer with PPC. Formerly an actor, Zann has an interesting history with the Liberals: She was a provincial MLA for the NDP and runner-up to Gary Burrill in the NDP's 2016 leadership race, but in 2019 she left the local party to run as a federal Liberal. This riding reaches the New Brunswick border and includes the towns of Amherst, Oxford, Truro, Pugwash and Tatamagouche.
Incumbent Liberal MP Kody Blois is running against Mark Parent representing the Conservatives, the NDP's Stephen Schneider and PPC's Steven Ford. Parent represented the Progressive Conservatives at the provincial level as MLA in Kings North between 1999 and 2009, serving as minister of environment, labour and agriculture during the Rodney MacDonald government. Blois first won the Kings Hants seat in 2019. The riding covers the eatern part of Kings County, including Enfield, Elmdsale, Kentville, Windsor and Wolfville.
Darrell Samson, the Liberal who's held the Sackville-Preston Chezzetcook seat since 2015, is up for re-election. He is the former superintendent of the Conseil scolaire acadien provincial. Prior to Samson's first election win, the riding had been an NDP stronghold under Peter Stoffer, who had represented the area from 1997 to 2015. Samson is up against Jenna Chisholm for the NDP, Angela Conrad with the Conservatives, Anthony Edmonds with the Greens and Earl Gosse with the PPC. This riding covers the HRM coast from Lake Charlotte to Jeddore Harbour, and includes Preston and Sackville.
South Shore-St. Margarets
Liberal fisheries and oceans minister Bernadette Jordan is up for re-election in the South Shore riding. Jordan, minister since 2019 and MP since 2015, is up against NDP Olivia Dorey, Conservative Rick Perkins and the Green's Thomas Trapper. The riding covers Shelburne, Queens and Lunenburg counties.
Jaime Battiste, Canada's first Mi'kmaw member of parliament, is the incumbent Liberal in this Cape Breton riding. Battiste made headlines in 2019, the year he was elected, when offensive tweets from 2012 were uncovered. On Twitter the MP had joked about sexual assault and specifically targeted Indigenous women with references to drug use. He apologized, and Justin Trudeau kept him on as a candidate. Battiste went on to beat Conservative Eddie Orrell with 30 percent of the vote a few months after his tweets came to light. The Eskasoni-based MP is up against Orrell once again, as well as the NDP's Jeff Ward, a fellow Mi'kmaq candidate. Ward is from the Mi'kmaq Nation Metepenagiag in New Brunswick and lives in Membertou. The PPC's Ronald Angus Barron is also running. The riding covers Cape Breton's Victoria County and the northern part of Inverness County.
Liberal incumbent Mike Kelloway is running in the Cape Breton-Canso riding where he was elected in 2019. He's up against Conservative Fiona MacLeod and NDP Jenna Reddick. One of two Cape Breton ridings, it covers the eastern side of Guysborough county and the western, southern and eastern coasts of Cape Breton Island. This includes Inverness, Glace Bay, Canso, Port Hawkesbury and Cheticamp.
In West Nova, Nova Scotia's sole Conservative MP is up for re-election. Chris d'Entremont, the former provincial politician, has held the seat since 2019. Alxys Chamberlain, retired provincial health minister Leo Glavine's former executive assistant, is running for the Liberals in West Nova. Chamberlain and d'Entremont are up against Cheryl Burbidge for the NDP and Scott Spidle representing the PPC. This riding covers Berwick towards Annapolis, Digby and Yarmouth Counties.
Sean Fraser, the Liberal MP first elected in 2015, is hoping to be sent back to Ottawa from the Central riding that covers Pictou, New Glasgow, Antigonish, Stellarton, Sherbrooke and Sheet Harbour. Fraser is up against Betsy MacDonald representing the NDP, Conservative Steve Cotter and PPC candidate Al Muir.