Conservatives haven’t been able to win a seat in Montreal’s greater metropolitan area since the 1988 election, when they were known as the Progressive Conservatives. Tory leader Andrew Scheer has tapped former junior hockey champion Angelo Esposito to contest the suburban Montreal riding for the party. Esposito, known for playing with Team Canada and scoring the winning goal of the gold medal game at the 2009 World Junior Championships, is one of the biggest names for the Tories in Quebec. The former hockey star is likely Scheer’s best bet to win in the Montreal area. While the Liberals remain dominant in and around Montreal, Alfred-Pellan has gone Liberal, NDP and Bloc Quebecois in the last three elections. Wining the riding for the Conservatives won’t be easy for Esposito. But if the Tories can do well in Alfred-Pellan, a multicultural suburban riding, then Tories would have significantly enlarged their voter base in the province.
Population: 101,373 (Elections Canada)
Major communities: The eastern part of the city of Laval.
Incumbent: Angelo Iacono, Liberal.
Main challengers: Entrepreneur Angelo Esposito for the Conservatives; legal director for a franchising company Andriana Kocini with the NDP; Marguerite Howells with the Greens; activist and former teacher Michel Lachance with the Bloc Quebecois.
Election history: Alfred-Pellan was won by the NDP’s Rosane Dore Lefebvre in 2011 with 42 per cent of the vote. In the 2008, 2006 and 2004 elections, the riding was won by the Bloc Quebecois’ Robert Carrier. Before 2003 the riding was called Laval-East and was won by the Liberals in 2000.
Fun fact: Alfred-Pellan is located on the eastern-most part of the city of Laval, located across the river bordering Montreal’s north shore. Laval is located on Ile Jesus, named by the Jesuits who controlled the island beginning in 1636 during the era of New France. The island used to house summer vacation homes for Montrealers and is now an urban and industrial centre.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 16, 2019.
The Canadian Press