Liberal Scott Reid wins byelection

Big swing away from Tories in riding formerly held by Joan Shea

Frank Gale
Published on August 27, 2014

Liberal Scott Reid sums up his resounding win in the St. George’s-Stephenville East byelection Tuesday as evidence of the public’s thirst for change.

The unofficial results from Elections Newfoundland and Labrador showed Scott Reid of the Liberals finishing with 2,211 votes, Wally Childs of the Progressive Conservatives with 948, and Bernice Hancock of the NDP with 579 votes.

Reid said that as he went door to door during the election campaign he got the feeling people were looking for change and that was very strong in some areas of the district.

“It was actually humbling to have such support in the district,” Reid said.

Childs said people said they wanted change and they got it. He said he plans to hold Reid’s feet to the fire to be true to some of the things he said during the campaign.

Childs said while he was campaigning he got the feeling that people were feeling neglected and when you’re neglected you want something different. He said that’s what happened.

“If I’ve helped out people by just running in this campaign, then the whole exercise in democracy has been a success,” Childs said.

He said politics is one of the things that was on his bucket list and while it was an awesome experience, he may or may not run again.

Reid said he didn’t take anything for granted during the campaign and went to every voter he could reach, listened to the people and heard what they had to say.

He said the people of the province are ready for change and are looking to Dwight Ball, leader of the Liberal party.

Reid plans to move back to the district, where he has lived for the longest period in his life.

“It’s my home, make no mistake about that,” he said. “It’s the place that shaped who I am.”

Reid sees opportunities in the district in agriculture, the Stephenville airport, Port Harmon in Stephenville and small business ventures.

He said he’ll  work with individuals to see where improvement in those things can be made.

He said it’s important to get involved and make a difference in a positive way and said he can do that in his new position as member of the House of Assembly.

While Ball was obviously pleased with the win in the district, bringing the number of Liberals in the House of Assembly up to 13, he said even with the general election within the next year, his party is not taking anything for granted.

He said the people of Newfoundland and Labrador have the last say and his party will be back with nominations after Labour Day.

Ball said he was in every region of the St. George’s-Stephenville East district during the election campaign and he, too, realized quickly that people were ready for a change.