This wasn’t unexpected, but here is the official news:
Premier Kathleen Wynne has called byelections for Feb. 13 in Thornhill and Niagara Falls…The riding of Niagara Falls became vacant after Liberal MPP Kim Craitor resigned. Thornhill MPP Peter Shurman stepped down after a very public dispute with PC Leader Tim Hudak.
This will not only be a test for Premier Wynne, to see what incumbent voters think of her and how she’s handled things, approximately a year after she was chosen as Premier by the OLP, but a major look to see whether Tim Hudak, who hasn’t exactly caught fire with voters, can hold a seat where there is obvious turmoil.
NDP leader Andrea Horwath has a bit easier ride of the three leaders; she can go in as underdog, and claim to have no expectations. It will be interesting to see, even if the NDP doesn’t win either riding, what their vote totals are here as compared to last election. The NDP has seemed to have had favourable reviews and momentum, so we’ll see if they have any in 2 ridings they didn’t hold (and which I’d argue, realistically, they shouldn’t be expected to win).