The Liberals have firmed up their plans to contest two of Hamilton’s suburban ridings. MPP Ted McMeekin has announced his intention to go after the newly-redistributed riding of Hamilton-West Ancaster Dundas, and Ward 15 Councillor Judi Partridge announced she will run for the Liberals in the new Flamborough-Glanbrook riding. In the new riding configuration Mc Meekin will lose his home base of Waterdown , where he served as mayor prior to amalgamation. He will retain Ancaster and Dundas which are the major population centres in the riding, and now he will add part of the west mountain to the constituency. Flamborough-Glanbrook resembles to a degree the old Wentworth ridings, essentially forming a semi-circle around Hamilton stretching from Waterdown to upper Stoney Creek. While in area, the majority of the riding is rural, it is undergoing an urban population shift with explosive growth taking place in Waterdown, Mount Hope, Binbrook and Upper Stoney Creek.
McMeekin will face off against Tory Ben Levitt—a young west mountain resident whose nomination faces court challenges from two candidates who vied for the nomination. No word yet on NDP plans for either riding, and so far there has been no word of a Tory candidate to face Partridge in Flamborough-Glanbrook.
Provincially there are signs the Liberals are taking Tory leader Patrick Brown as a serious threat as they have stepped up the tone and frequency of attacks. He is getting heat for having interjected to decide several nomination races thus far. He has said he is determined that the party will not get taken over by extreme elements—a source of gaffes and campaign embarrassments in the past. The Liberals face their own scrutiny on nomination practices in September when Wynne insider Pat Sorbara goes on trial in Sudbury for allegedly offering a job to Andrew Olivier to abandon his candidacy for the local provincial nomination in favour of current Energy Minister Glen Thibeault.