NDP Leadership: Romeo Saganash Pulls Out Of Race To Replace Jack Layton

Romeo Saganash

First Posted: 02/ 9/2012 6:53 pm Updated: 02/ 9/2012 8:22 pm

NDP MP Romeo Saganash has pulled out of the race to replace Jack Layton as NDP leader.

The MP for Abitibi-Baie James-Nunavik-Eeyou will make a formal announcement in his riding Friday morning.

Insufficient funds and competing demands on his time contributed to Saganash's decision to forfeit the race which now has seven candidates.

“My mother, sisters and brothers and my children all need more attention than I have been able to provide,” Saganash said in a news release obtained by The Huffington Post Canada. “I am unable to devote enough time to them, my constituents or my party and run the kind of campaign that I would like to run."

Saganash noted the warm reception he had received from NDP supporters but said it was a “impossible to run a winning campaign as the favourite second choice.”

“People send you good wishes, but they don't send their money”, he said.

Saganash said he had received tremendous reaction among the Aboriginal community but reaching out to other Canadians required an infrastructure that was impossible to build in a single campaign.

News that Saganash would pull out had the other campaigns wondering Thursday evening who he would endorse.

Saganash was coy in his news release saying he would endorse whichever candidate can best move the vision forward that I have for our party.” He talked about building support in Quebec, reaching to rural and suburban voters and engaging the forty per cent of Canadians who did not vote in the last election.

He may, however, make an announcement Friday morning in Val D'Or.

Also on HuffPost:

Brian Topp - What does the party need to do to win the next election?
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This is a question I get from party members everywhere I go. New Democrats want to win in 2015. And they want to know that the candidates have a plan to win and then to govern well. I believe that the key to winning is to offer a clear and positive social democratic agenda for change. We don't have to become Liberals to win. We don't have to defeat ourselves even as we win by adopting the priorities and agendas of our opponents -- by becoming what we are fighting to change.

And we don't have to borrow from the Conservative playbook by practicing the cynical politics of division and anger. For every criticism we make of or opponents, we have to offer a positive solution in its place. In my campaign I have offered a series of detailed proposals to improve the fairness of our tax system and I will be releasing major policy initiatives aimed at building a more equal, greener and just Canada. In the end, New Democrats win by staying positive, by offering a clear and practical agenda for change, and by having the courage of our convictions.