Green Party Leader Elizabeth May became her party's first elected MP Monday night, the first Green in history in the House of Commons, after winning the Saanich Gulf Island riding on the west coast.
May took the seat from Conservative Gary Lunn — who had held the seat for 14 years — by almost 15 per cent more votes than the incumbent, a decisive win in a campaign that was an all-or-nothing gamble for the party.
It was a gamble that paid off.
This was May's third attempt at gaining a seat for herself and the Green Party, a perennial also-ran in ridings across the country.
Now more than ever with the Conservatives winning a majority, May said that the Green Party's voice is needed in Parliament.
“This is definitely going to be a much more aggressive and unrestrained government,” she said Monday night.
May won her seat after the Green Party poured in support into the riding in hopes of winning the party's first ever seat. The strategy worked for May even though it cost the party overall in popular support.
Last time, the Greens reached a high of 6.8 per cent of the popular vote but this time garnered only 4 per cent of the vote across the country.
“This campaign has been about commitment, passion, enthusiasm and excitement we could all feel that something different was happening,” May said to a crowd of over 800 supporters who gathered in a Sidney airplane hanger to hear the results Monday night.
May held the lead in her riding early on and her supporters broke into song once she was officially declared the winner singing This Land is Your Land, hugging and dancing in excitement.