'Who would believe that NDP orange would cover Nova Scotia... ' - NDP Premier-elect Darrell Dexter.
Halifax (10 June 2009) - The New Democratic Party swept to an historic victory in Nova Scotia Tuesday, winning 31 seats in the 52-seat provincial legislature. The Liberal Party finished a distant second with 11 seats while the ruling Progressive Conservatives were reduced to third place with 10 seats.
It is the first time the NDP has won power in any province east of Ontario and the first time in six years that Nova Scotians have elected a majority government.
The old-line parties resorted to desperation tactics in the final days of the campaign – including negative ads and fear-mongering stunts misrepresenting the traditional support of organized labour for the NDP – but voters paid no attention.
Ridings like Shelburne, Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley, Truro-Bible Hill and Cumberland North went NDP, a once unthinkable outcome in such a traditional political province.
"Who would believe that NDP orange would cover Nova Scotia from Cumberland County right down through the (Annapolis) Valley, as far south as Shelburne County and right on through to Cape Breton Island?" NDP leader and Premier-elect Darrell Dexter asked jubilant supporters - and a watching provincial and national television audience - at his personal victory celebration in Cole Harbour.
Dexter pledged to lead a responsible government, focusing on keeping emergency rooms open, removing the provincial sales tax from electricity bills and fixing pot-holed pocked rural roads.
At dissolution, the Tories had 21 seats, while the NDP had 20. The Liberals trailed with nine. There was one Independent and one vacant seat.
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Complete results of the 2009 Nova Scotia election