McGuinty has been premier for nine years and Liberal party leader for nearly 16. Prior to last fall's provincial election, it was widely thought he would step down soon after, regardless of the outcome.
But winning a minority complicated the matter because quitting now — when an election could come at any time — would leave the Liberals vulnerable. But stay on too long and McGuinty runs the risk of making Ontario voters weary of him.
McGuinty and his party have faced a handful of challenges recently, including:
- A disappointing third-place finish in the Kitchener-Waterloo byelection held earlier this month.
- A contempt motion in the legislature over his government’s delay in releasing documents related to two cancelled power plant projects.
- Fierce opposition to the Liberals' move to legislate a wage free for teachers and cap salaries of other civil servants.
Liberal party president Yasir Naqvi told CBC News that McGuinty has the confidence of his party, in spite of the challenges.
“He has demonstrated again and again that he is a strong leader who has the ability to make tough decisions,” said Naqvi.
About 1,000 Liberal delegates will vote in Ottawa, McGuinty's hometown, on whether to force a leadership convention.
Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Hudak and NDP Leader Andrea Horwath comfortably survived their leadership reviews earlier this year.