“She is 100% committed to leading and helping to build the party and grow the party,” Steve Outhouse, her campaign manager, told The Canadian Press.
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Lewis was the very first black candidate to run for the leadership of the Conservative Party.
Despite signing up as a low-key candidate, the Toronto lawyer proved to be a strong candidate, winning the popular vote and garnering 30% of the vote in the second ballot before falling less than 5% behind MacKay.
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney praised Lewis’ “huge support” at a press conference on Tuesday, shortly after appointing the nation’s first black justice minister.
He said Lewis won the vote in Alberta in the second ballot and “would have won in the third ballot, but she was eliminated nationally.
Conservative leadership contestant Leslyn Lewis
“She has overwhelmingly won the support of Albertans and rural prairie residents,” Kenney said.
“I think it sends a very important message about how this country is truly characterized by equal opportunities and how the conservative movement embraces people from diverse backgrounds.
She overcame huge barriers and became a very powerful voice in our national politics and I hope and expect to see great things from her, ”he said.
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Former Premier Brad Wall also praised Lewis supporters in Saskatchewan in a previous interview with Global News.
Lewis sent “a very clear message for western Canada” at a time when some in the west “flirt with protest parties or independence movements,” he said.
Some of Lewis’s promises included the elimination of the carbon tax, the restriction of access to abortion, the creation of a strategic oil reserve, the reinstatement of an action plan to combat the trafficking in human beings and halting the expansion of new categories of medical assistance in dying.
– With files from the Canadian Press
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