- Heather Stefanson’s election as the leader of Manitoba’s Progressive Conservatives and the province’s premier has been upheld by a judge.
- Shelly Glover, who got only 49% of the vote on Oct. 30, claimed voting irregularities and asked the court to overturn the results.
A judge has dismissed a legal challenge to Heather Stefanson’s election as Manitoba’s Progressive Conservatives leader and the province’s premier.
Shelly Glover, who received only 49 percent of the vote on Oct. 30, claimed voting irregularities and asked the court to overturn the results.
“I am not convinced that any of the alleged irregularities… influenced the election result,” said Justice James Edmond of the Court of Queen’s Bench on Friday.
Lawyers for the party testified in court that Glover had no evidence that anything happened to influence the voting results.
They also claimed that scrutineers from both the Glover and Stefanson campaigns watched all ballots being counted.
Stefanson was sworn in as premier three days after the election to replace Brian Pallister, who had retired. Glover refused to accept defeat and promptly filed a legal challenge.
Glover’s lawyer, Dave Hill, cited daily spreadsheets provided by the party to both campaigns as mail-in ballots arrived in late October. The sheets were intended to keep track of which party members had voted.
After the voting deadline, the final spreadsheet had about 500 fewer votes than the official results, announced 16 hours later.
Hill also claimed that there was questionable behavior in keeping the ballots secure from tampering. He stated that the boxes were moved out of the counting room after the count.
Harley Schachter, a lawyer for the PC party, argued that the daily spreadsheets were never an official count and that both campaigns were aware of their flaws.
The ballots were counted at 18 tables in the presence of scrutineers Glover and Stefanson, and a tally sheet at each table recorded the number of votes cast for each candidate.
Lawyers for the PC Party and Stefanson said Glover’s team provided no evidence that any ballots were improperly counted.
Schacter stated that the ballot boxes were moved under the supervision of an outside accounting firm and security company.
“We are pleased with the court’s decision today to dismiss Shelly Glover’s complaint,” said Tom Wiebe, President of the PC Party of Manitoba.
“As previously stated, we followed the election rules, and the judge confirmed that it was a fair process.” We now look forward to ensuring that the PC Party remains strong, united, and ready to unite all Manitobans.”
Source: Global News
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