Saskatchewan NDP candidate Aleana Young’s campaign was all about her readiness to deliver, and though the ballots in her tightly contested riding haven’t yet been fully counted, she was still able to do just that.
In an election eve tweet, Young announced the delivery of her newborn baby, Hara Louise Astarte Roadhouse, along with a picture of the newborn clasping a pin with her campaign slogan: “Ready to Deliver.”
Young, who spent the last several weeks of her pregnancy campaigning for the riding of Regina University, is locked in a close race against Saskatchewan Party incumbent and cabinet minister Tina Beaudry-Mellor.
Beaudry-Mellor, who was first elected to the seat in the last general election, congratulated Young on the birth of her child.
Read more: Saskatchewan election: Regina University
“I hope both you and she are doing well. Hara will be a strong woman,” said Beaudry-Mellor, who presides over the advanced education and status of women portfolios.
Global News has since projected a Saskatchewan Party majority government, with party leader Scott Moe expected to govern in his second term as premier of Saskatchewan.
This is the fourth-consecutive election the party has won, though full results won’t be revealed until Nov. 7 due to the around 61,000 mail-in ballots that were received by Elections Saskatchewan.
Global News is currently projecting 48 Saskatchewan Party and 13 NDP seats, with the majority of NDP seats being decided over close races in urban areas like Regina and Saskatoon. Several ridings — such as Saskatoon Meewasin, where Saskatchewan NDP Leader Ryan Meili is in a tight race — will not be decided until at least a few days from now due to mail-in ballots.
As of publication, Beaudry-Mellor maintains a 5.9 per cent lead over Young, with 90.9 per cent of polls reporting.
This is not the first time the two have faced off for the seat as well, with Beaudry-Mellor narrowly beating Young by 424 votes in the 2016 provincial election.
The race for the seat was also expected to be very close this time around.
University of Saskatchewan political scientist Greg Poelzer said that the Saskatchewan Party incumbents in Regina University and Regina Coronation ridings were in for “very tough battles, battles that they have a good chance of losing.”
“Those two ridings, I think, are also important in terms of a future where the Sask. Party ends up going,” Poelzer said.
Created as one of three new ridings for the province’s 2016 general election, Regina University encompasses the neighbourhoods of Hillsdale and Whitmore Park.
Young serves as a school board trustee in the Regina Public School Board and is the vice-president of Family Service Regina.
Beaudry-Mellor previously served as minister of social services and was an instructor of politics and international studies at the University of Regina.
Progressive Conservative Party candidate Debbie Knill and Green Party candidate Tanner Wallace were also on the ballot.