Former Tory cabinet minister Jeff Yurek says he won’t be running again

A former Progressive Conservative MP and former Cabinet minister will step down from politics next month.

Jeff Yurek (Elgin-Middlesex-London) has announced that he will not be running in the June 2 election in Ontario and will step down from his seat at the end of February.

“My time in public life has run its course. I think it’s time for EML voters to choose a new voice to represent their interests at Queen’s Park, ”he said in a Facebook post on Friday.

Demoted from Prime Minister Doug Ford’s office last June, Yurek, first elected in 2011, had been Minister of the Environment, Transport and Natural Resources since 2018.

“At the Cabinet table, I stood firm, being a persuasive voice for rural and southwestern Ontario,” he said.

But Yurek has been purged in a massive reshuffle that saw the prime minister reshuffle his cabinet late last spring over concerns that some rural ministers were ‘anti-foreclosure’ and urged him to reopen the economy too. quickly during the third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic last February.

“These former MPs (in cabinet) who are in safe seats and who are against the lockdown, go a long way in explaining why the prime minister opened things too quickly in February and closed things too slowly in April,” said one. senior official last year. before the cabinet changes.

On Twitter, Ford thanked Yurek “for his time and dedication to serving the people of Elgin-Middlesex-London.”

“. I wish you, your wife and daughter all the best as you enter the next chapter, ”the Prime Minister said.

No by-election will be called to fill the vacant seat, as the general election will be held in less than five months.

Yurek is the latest MLA to announce his retirement.

Other non-racing Tories include Christina Mitas (Scarborough Center), Amy Fee (Kitchener South-Hespeler), Norm Miller (Parry Sound-Muskoka), Jim McDonnell (Stormount-Dundas-South Glengarry) and Randy Pettapiece (Perth- Wellington ).

Former Liberal Premier Kathleen Wynne, who has represented Don Valley West since 2003, is not seeking re-election.

Neither are New Democrats Ian Arthur (Kingston and the Islands), Percy Hatfield (Windsor-Tecumseh) and Taras Natyshak (Essex).

Robert Benzie is the Bureau Chief of Star’s Queen’s Park and a journalist covering Ontario politics. Follow him on Twitter: @robertbenzie


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