Former cabinet minister and current Ontario Liberal leadership hopeful Sandra Pupatello says a quick election isn't on her agenda if she becomes premier.
The former Windsor-West MPP says people in Ontario are more interested in the economy and jobs than going to the polls.
"I don't think the public wants an election. What my first goal will be is to have a seat in the house," said Pupatello.
Pupatello left politics in 2011 and took a job at PricewaterhouseCoopers.
Now she says the opportunity has presented itself to lead Ontario with a focus on improving the province's unemployment rate.
"I actually think that if we change the conversation, to be talking about jobs and the economy, I can't even imagine how the opposition parties will not want to work with me," said Pupatello. "And if they don't want to work with me, and we have to go to the polls in an election, I'm going to make sure the public knows their agenda is not about jobs and the economy."
Since Premier Dalton McGuinty announced his resignation in October seven Liberals are now vying to become the next premier of Ontario:
- Glen Murray
- Kathleen Wynne
- Eric Hoskins
- Charles Sousa
- Harinder Takhar
- Gerard Kennedy
- Sandra Pupatello
A new Liberal leader is expected to be chosen in late January.
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Dalton McGuinty's Scandals
When you lead Canada's biggest province for nine years you're bound to have some missteps. Ontario's Premier Dalton McGuinty has had his share of scandals and mistakes. <p>We highlight a few that caused him more headaches than usual. <p>Photo: Ontario Liberal Party
Back in 2004, a relatively new Liberal government under Premier Dalton McGuinty was forced to go back on a campaign promise not to raise taxes and instituted a health premium of between $300-$900. Photo: Alamy
In 2006, the Liberals tried to announce a new $46-billion energy plan that would see renovations of many of Ontario’s power plants. But the plan became a problem for the Liberals when <em>the Globe and Mail </em>revealed that the government tried to exempt their plans from environmental assessments. Photo: Shutterstock
The government’s plans to modernize medical records in the province ran into massive scandal when reports of overspending, waste and possible conflict of interest were revealed at <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EHealth_Ontario">eHealth</a>, the agency responsible for building a new electronic records system. The scandal forced the resignation of Health Minister David Caplan. <P>Photo: Shutterstock
G20 Police Laws
Dalton McGuinty and the Liberals were criticized for laws giving police greater powers to ensure security during the <a href="http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/story/2010/12/08/mcguinty-g20-ombudsman-report652.html">G20 in 2010</a>. The laws were seen by civil rights groups as draconian. Andre Marin, Ontario’s ombudsman also <a href="http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/torontog20summit/article/902817--ombudsman-charges-g20-secret-law-was-illegal">criticized the government</a> calling the laws and police action a massive violation of civil rights. <p>Photo: AP Files/Carolyn Kaster
Ontario’s air ambulance service, Ornge, <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/tag/ornge-scandal">caused another headache for McGuinty’s Liberals</a> after reports of financial irregularities, cost overruns, huge salaries for managers being kept secret and reports of kickbacks began to emerge in the media. <P>Photo: CP/Globe and Mail
Canceled Power Plants
Hobbled by scandal and facing a resurgent Conservatives in the 2011 provincial election, the <a href="http://www.globaltoronto.com/timeline/6442734189/story.html">Liberals cancelled two power plants</a> in the GTA despite the fact it would cost taxpayers several hundred million dollars. Ontario's auditor general estimates those costs could climb to $1.1 billion. <P>Photo: Michelle Siu/CP