POLITICS

Mulcair Vows To Hold Trudeau To Account In Email To Supporters

10/23/2015 04:19 EDT | Updated 10/23/2015 04:59 EDT

NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair has signalled that he's not going anywhere.

Mulcair sent an email to New Democrats Friday thanking them for their support, while also conceding this week's election results were not what they had "hoped for."

He suggested NDP MPs will pay close attention to how Justin Trudeau's Liberal majority government sets out to fulfill its promises.

"Mr. Trudeau has made ambitious commitments and Canadians have high expectations for their next Parliament," he wrote, echoing his concession speech. "We will hold this new government to account and fight for your priorities every day. That is my commitment to you."

The NDP leader also lauded the party's "historic contributions to build this country," including fielding the most women and indigenous candidates in history. He vowed not to let down the 3.5 million Canadians who cast a ballot for the NDP.

"We will continue our pursuit of better health care for Canadians. We will continue to fight against climate change and protect our land, air, and water," he wrote. "And we will continue our efforts to build a true Nation-to-Nation relationship with First Nations, Inuit, and Metis peoples."

His note ends with a reference to beginning the "next chapter."

'In it for the long haul'

Mulcair has not been heard from since his gracious speech Monday night after the NDP, which led polls at the start of the election campaign, elected just 44 MPs across the country.

Many high-profile and respected MPs, including deputy leader Megan Leslie, Jack Harris, Peter Stoffer, Peggy Nash, and Paul Dewar, were caught up in what's being described as a "red wave" that swept the country.

Mulcair told supporters in Montreal that he accepted the election results with "full humility" and wished Trudeau well.

But the speculation about Muclair's future began almost immediately. Former Liberal leaders Stephane Dion and Michael Ignatieff both stepped down after disappointing elections in 2008 and 2011.

Mulcair's spokesman George Smith told The Canadian Press Wednesday that the party would stick by its leader.

"The election results were, of course, not what we wanted but with our best result outside of the orange wave, the NDP and Tom Mulcair are in it for the long haul," Smith said.

Dewar, who ran against Mulcair for NDP leader in 2012, apparently agrees Mulcair should keep the job.

"I think it would be, frankly, foolhardy right now to be looking at a new leader and we should be consolidating the gains we made," Dewar said.

Mulcair is set to face a leadership review at the party convention in the spring, as stipulated in the NDP constitution. If more than 50 per cent of ballots call for a leadership election, one will be held within a year.

While some of the turfed New Democrats are starting to give media interviews, ousted Toronto Danforth incumbent Craig Scott did not go gentle into that good night.

Scott, who lost former NDP leader Jack Layton's old seat to a Liberal, took to Facebook this week with a message of "frustrated frankness," in which he bashed Grits and bemoaned Canada's "broken" electoral system.

At the dissolution of Parliament in August, Liberals held just 36 seats. Now, Trudeau's team has an astounding 184 — despite 39.5 per cent of the popular vote.

Scott suggested that at least some Liberal incumbents didn't deserve re-election.

"Liberal MPs (not all but far too many) were fundamentally lazy, sitting passively in their corner of the House (assigning the same MP to do almost all their speaking for the other 35 for four straight years) and arrogantly waiting for the messiah to take them back to the promised land of power (and they were proven 'right' in that calculation)," he wrote.

With files from The Canadian Press

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In Photos: Canada Election 2015