There were 23 seats up for grabs in Toronto last night. On a night when the Conservative Party was elected to form a minority government, Toronto had other ideas. Not a single one of Toronto's 23 seats went to a Conservative candidate.
In 2004, every one of our 23 seats went to the Liberal party except for Jack Layton's riding. This time, the result was identical except Olivia Chow won her riding and Peggy Nash won my riding. That gives us twenty Liberal MPs and three NDP MPs. In Montreal and Vancouver, the results were similar with the Conservative party also being shut out in both cities.
Stephen Harper's Conservative Party cannot win in Toronto because of how close to our hearts we cherish our socially liberal values. The mere suggestion of repealing our abortion laws or revisiting the same-sex marriage debate upsets the average 416er. Toronto, like Montreal and Vancouver, is a progressive, open-minded, accepting and sensible city that will not sacrifice these values at any cost. So long as the Conservatives can't make a dent in Canada's big cities they will never win a majority.
The plan is coming together nicely. Paul Martin's resignation as leader is imminent and a new leader will emerge who doesn't belong to Jean Chretien or Martin. The new leader will unite this nation and return us to our former stature as the envy of progressive nations across the globe.