Houston was the clear winner, and then some
Vote totals released and underline new leader’s dominance
Tory leader Tim Houston’s dominance of the Conservative leadership race was understated by the point totals released on the day he won the leadership.
e party used a point system, giving each of the province’s 51 ridings equal weight – 100 points. Points were distributed to the ve leadership candidates in proportion to their vote total in each constituency.
at system delivered Houston 2,497 rst ballot points, just 54shy of the 2,551 needed to win.
But by every other conceivable tally, Houston won the leadership outright on the rst ballot. e party released the vote totals Tuesday.
Of the 8,947 total votes cast, 4,568 – more than 51 per cent – were for Houston. His closest rival was Cape Breton Regional Mayor Cecil Clarke who received 2,476 votes.
Houston, who represents Pictou East in the legislature, won in 39 of the province’s 51 ridings, while Clarke won nine, mostly on Cape Breton, but he also took the two Lunenburg seats and Halifax Chebucto.
Kings North MLA John Lohr won his home riding and neighbouring Kings South, while Elizabeth Smith-mccrossin won only in her own riding, Cumberland North. Julie Chaisson did not win any ridings outright and nished third in her home riding of Chester St. Margaret’s, behind Houston and Clarke.
Lohr amassed 1,109 votes; Smith-mccrossin took 618, and Chaisson, 176.
e new leader’s home riding produced the most votes among ridings. In Pictou East, 911 Tories voted for a new leader, and 801 of those votes – about 88 per cent – went to the MLA, Tim Houston.
Houston also won the most votes in Preston- Dartmouth, which produced just 38 votes, the fewest among all ridings. But Houston’s 27 votes there were good enough to earn him 71 points.