Bardish Chagger wins Waterloo riding in federal election


Photo by Andreas Patsiaouros
Photo by Andreas Patsiaouros

After seven years of Conservative reign, the Waterloo riding has turned red.

Bardish Chagger was named the Member of Parliament-elect for the Waterloo riding Monday evening, defeating incumbent Peter Braid who has held the riding for seven years.

“We have to go to evidence-based decision making, we cannot be blinded by ideology. It is important that we do the best for Canadians and Justin Trudeau said it best, better is possible,” said Chagger.

As of 11:50 p.m., Chagger was declared the winner with 49.1 per cent of the vote and climbing. Braid had collected around 32 per cent of the vote, while New Democratic Party candidate Diane Freeman snagged 14.5 per cent of the vote.

In Canada overall, Justin Trudeau was declared the new Prime Minister with a majority government.

Chagger credits her team for a long 11-week campaign. Her team believed that “hard work and hope will always come through.” She believes there was a clear contrast in the type of campaign the Liberal party ran in comparison to the others.

In terms of immediate plans as soon as she is in office, Chagger points to continuing to keep her doors open.

“I’ll be here for you, I’ll be a voice for everyone,” she said.

Chagger added that students voted this election and their voices were heard.

Braid congratulated Chagger for running a solid 11-week campaign, the longest in Canadian political history.

“Chagger ran a great campaign here locally in Waterloo and clearly across the country, this was a Liberal wave,” Braid said. “I’m very proud of our team. We did everything we could and I’m very proud of my services as a Member of Parliament for the last seven years.”

Braid thanked his dedicated supporters, those part of his campaign team and the students at Wilfrid Laurier University as well as the University of Waterloo for their support and help canvassing.

He also provided advice to the MP-elect.

“Work hard. Stay close to the people and know that it’s your voters and your constituents you represent.”

Braid said he would not change anything about the election.

Diane Freeman, NDP candidate, said a “sweep of the nation” cannot be expected and running again would be dependent on the party’s choice. She states that people have paid more attention to polls rather than the issues present in this election.

“I really feel like the pollsters have taken away democracy because people are paying attention to the polls as opposed to paying attention to issues,” she said.

Freeman concludes that she would not change “one thing” about her campaign.

Waterloo is an educated and innovative community, and Chagger plans to put this region back on the map.

– With files from Kaitlyn Severin, Erika Ymana and Shelby Blackley

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