Conservative leadership: Ballot counting to begin Thursday


The Conservative Party is giving itself a head start by counting the hundreds of thousands of ballots it received to determine who its next leader will be.

Tuesday was the deadline for party members to return their ballots by mail to the Conservatives’ headquarters in downtown Ottawa.

More than 400,000 ballots were returned – out of some 678,000 party members eligible to vote in the contest, which is a record number for a Canadian political party.

The sheer size of that membership list meant party officials had to plan how all those ballots would be counted in time for the new leader to be named at an event in Ottawa on Saturday night.

The party is setting up tabulators to begin the ballot counting process on Thursday.

There was an hour-long delay in delivering results in the last Tory leadership race of 2020, when machines damaged thousands of ballots and former leader Erin O’s victory ‘Toole was announced after midnight.

This report from The Canadian Press was first published on September 7, 2022.