HALIFAX – Darren Fisher has stolen the seat from NDP Robert Chisolm securing a Liberal victory for the Dartmouth-Cole Harbour riding.
The riding of Dartmouth-Cole Harbour had been in a tight race throughout the entire election, and even on Election Day, there was little indication whether Chisolm or Fisher would take the seat.
But as the votes were tallied, it was clear Fisher would sweep the riding. He grabbed 29,697 votes, more than double the number of votes received by Chisholm, who received 12,442 votes.
He arrived to cheers and chants of “Darren, Darren” as he walked into the Mic Mac Aquatic Club for his victory party.
“It’s a shock to the system,” he said as he addressed media before taking the stage.
“It’s very, very difficult right now to put this into words. This is one of the those things that’s probably the most humbling thing that’s ever happened to me.”
Fisher attributed his win to Justin Trudeau and the vision of Canada the Liberals were presenting to Nova Scotians.
“This is bigger than Dartmouth-Cole Harbour. It’s bigger than the team that worked to get me elected. It’s something that, at least for Atlantic Canada, it’s something Atlantic Canada can believe in.”
Mayor and councilors react to win
Mayor Mike Savage, who previously held the riding before the NDP’s Robert Chisholm snatched it from him in 2011, made an appearance at Fisher’s victory party.
“Darren Fisher is a great representative of the people. I’m very pleased for him and very proud of him,” he said.
His advice to Fisher? “The key is to hire good people and recognize that your job is to be a good constituency member of Parliament. Darren knows how to do that. He’s done that as a councilor. He’ll get it done,” he said. Savage said a special election to fill Fisher’s seat on council will be held in the New Year. Dartmouth councilor Gloria McCluskey said she had no doubt Fisher would win the riding.
“I knew he would. Now I have no seat mate for a while,” she said.
Provincial Liberals celebrate
Provincial ministers Andrew Younger, Tony Ince and Joanne Bernard also celebrated Fisher’s win. All three were present at his victory party. “This is surprising but not totally surprising,” Ince said.
Bernard notes how helpful it will now be to work alongside a Member of Parliament who is also Liberal.
“When your MP is the same political stripe provincially as they are federally, only good things come from that,” she said.
“Now you can see synergies. You will see better communication,” Ince said.
“You will see things getting done because we’re not too busy fighting with each other about certain issues. We can now put our heads down and look at the things Trudeau said he would like to get done and I think together we can do it.”
Since 1988, every MP elected in this riding has served a second term until now, as Fisher has changed the course.
-with files from Heide Pearson