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First Nations educator declares intent to run against Lunn, May

The New Democratic Party has so far had one person, first nations educator and conference organizer Edith Loring-Kuhanga, declare she is seeking the party's nomination in Saanich-Gulf Islands.

That means Conservative cabinet minister Gary Lunn, the incumbent in the riding, could be facing not one, not two, but three strong female candidates in the next federal election.

Green Party leader Elizabeth May yesterday announced she'll seek the nomination to run for her party in the riding north of Victoria. Party members will decide between her and activist Stuart Hertzog at a Sept. 19 meeting.

The Liberal Party riding association will hold its nomination meeting Sept. 12, with Renée Heatherington carrying the endorsements of prominent environmentalists including Briony Penn who ran for the Liberals last year. Heatherington faces Kit Spence, a political organizer who managed the Penn campaign.

The NDP's electoral district association president Starla Anderson confirmed Loring-Kuhanga is seeking the nomination, but said the party is still accepting declarations and is in the process of setting a date for a nomination meeting.

“The leader effect is real,” said University of Victoria political science professor Dennis Pilon explaining why he thinks May will still do well even if she's part of a trio of women facing Lunn. “She's so much better known than either of those candidates will ever be.”

It would have been better for May's campaign though if she were one woman running against several men, he said. “She needs everything to line up.”

Andrew MacLeod is The Tyee’s Legislative Bureau Chief in Victoria. Reach him here.

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