Preliminary results in Nanaimo-Ladysmith showed a tight three-way race Monday night, with the New Democrat Lisa Marie Barron and the Conservative Tamara Kronis trading off the lead, followed closely by incumbent Paul Manly of the Green Party.
By Tuesday morning, Barron had a 1,000-vote lead on Kronis and was almost 3,000 votes ahead of Manly.
With just under 70 per cent of polls reporting Monday, Kronis said she was feeling “fantastic” and hoped to take the seat.
“We were expecting a tight race. We’ve made huge gains for Conservatives in this riding and this election,” Kronis said.
Manly said he was confident that special ballots would bring him the win.
“Obviously this isn’t what we had hoped for right here, right now,” he said. “It would be nice to be 1,000 votes ahead instead of 1,000 votes behind, but we have 8,000 votes yet that are going to be counted on Friday.”
However, later in the night he said in a tweet that "the current margin will be hard to overcome."
I would like to thank my campaign team, all the volunteers who put their time, effort and hearts into my campaign, and the voters of Nanaimo-Ladysmith who supported me. Even with 8000 special ballots remaining to be counted on Friday, the current margin will be hard to overcome.— Paul Manly (@paulmanly) September 21, 2021
With more than 8,800 special ballots requested in the riding, it could be some time before a final result is known. Those ballots won’t be counted until they’ve been verified. Elections Canada has said that process will start on Tuesday.
Manly was first elected in a May 2019 byelection and re-elected just a few months later in the October 2019 general election, closely followed by the Conservative and NDP candidates.
There are 106,999 eligible voters in the riding.