July 17, 2014 3:09 pm

Tim Hudak returns to legislature after stinging election defeat

Ontario Progressive Conservative leader Tim Hudak announces that he will be stepping down as party leader after being defeated at his election night campaign head quarters in Grimsby, Ont., on Thursday, June 12, 2014.

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette

TORONTO – Tim Hudak is making his first appearance at the legislature since he resigned as leader of the Progressive Conservatives after losing the June 12 election.

He says he missed the first two weeks of the session – including the throne speech and budget – because he was spending time with his family.

Hudak joked that his infant daughter Maitland, who was born just a few weeks before the election was called, now recognizes him.

He says he’s still proud of the campaign the Tories ran even though it ended in defeat.

Hudak has borne the brunt of the anger over the Tories’ loss, which has been pinned on his ill-fated promise to cut 100,000 public sector jobs to balance the books.

He resigned as leader July 2 and the Tory caucus named veteran politician Jim Wilson as interim leader until the party elects a new chief.

Hudak says he put out a plan that he thought was right for the province by having it spend within its means, but he respects the choice voters made in re-electing the Liberals.

© The Canadian Press, 2014

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