Cisterna’s valiant effort still leaves NDP in third for K-W

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“I think people here will agree, we put in all of our effort an our energy, and now we just have to sit and wait,” Isabel Cisterna, Kitchener-Waterloo New Democratic Party candidate said before election results were fully tallied.

The feeling in the jazz room of the Huether Hotel tonight, as Cisterna awaited the provincial election results, was one of dedication, support and of family. It seemed as if everyone knew one another and it was more a reunion among friends than a haphazard collection campaign supports coming to await results.

However, despite the palpable optimism, the NDP party trailed in third after the Liberal win and followed by the Progressive Conservatives provincially.

Locally, Cisterna also places third with approximately 17 per cent after a conservative win by Witmer, followed by Liberal leader Eric Davis.

“This journey will not end here,” Cisterna said to a captive audience as the final declaring numbers came in. “This is just the beginning. We will know we did what we could and we put on a brave fight. We have momentum, we can do it.”

There was barely a moment this evening where Cisterna’s words or her very presence weren’t met with cheers, whistles or thundering applause. It often drowned out what she planned on saying next in her final speech, but it kept her smiling.

“When we started this journey,” she continued, “it was a journey with a single dream. And the dream was to do great. It didn’t matter how the results ended. The goal was to bring integrity and dignity to the party, and bring the kind of excitement and hope that people deserve and that we should all be a part of, and we did that.”

“Isabel came in at a good position of being very well known,” said Alison Rogers, women’s rep on the Lesbian Gay Bi-sexual Trans Queer (LGBTQ) and caucus for Ontario NDP. “And she has the arts and Latin community supporting her. She’s just a well known public figure, and I think she’s very relatable.”

“It’s been a pleasure seeing the new rise of the NDP,” announced Jim McIntyre to the audience, previous supporter of ‘other parties’ that he would not mention, before he put in his vote for Cisterna this election. “And I hope,” he continued, “that you endorse the party and all they represent in the future.”

“I am a better person in doing this, for taking a risk,” Cisterna said. “And it was well worth it. I think we did this to win and I feel like a winner right now.”

Marc Xuereb, Cisterna’s campaign manager said that he had a lot of fun running her campaign. “It was the first time I ever managed a campaign,” he said.

“And I saw that it was going to be a lot of time and effort — and it certainly was — but even from the first couple of days of the campaign, listening to her speak to people, I just knew I had to put everything I could into helping her.”

“We shook the ground of Elizabeth Witmer,” Cisterna said, and the room burst into applause and cheers. “I think she found a good contender.”

With her final words before a traditional Chilean musician and dancer took the microphone, Cisterna said, “My message for you is to continue to be hopeful. Even though the results were not what we wanted, we shouldn’t get down about it. We did amazing imagine what we can do next time.”

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