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Houston welcomes Lohr to PC leadership race

Tim Houston, addressing a full house at the Glasgow Square Theatre, on Sunday. Houston announced his candidacy for leader of the Nova Scotia PC Party on Nov. 19.
Tim Houston announced his candidacy for leader of the Nova Scotia PC Party on Nov. 19. - Sam Macdonald

Pictou East MLA Tim Houston welcomed his Progressive Conservative colleague John Lohr to the leadership race on Friday.

Houston described Lohr, who launched his party leadership bid last Monday, as a “good person,” and “a colleague on the caucus,” but left it at that.

“I’m not going to write an endorsement for him,” Houston told The News.

Lohr, who represents Kings North, is the second person to officially enter the PC leadership race after Houston.

However, fellow Tory Rob Batherson decided not to enter the race for family reasons despite some speculation that he would launch his own bid.

The leadership race was triggered after outgoing PC leader Jamie Baillie first announced his intention to step down last year.

Baillie will remain at the party’s helm until a new leader is chosen. He is expected to stay on as MLA for Cumberland South until the next provincial election.

Houston told The News that the new leader will be voted in by a convention of party members overseen by a committee.

The voting rules will be released to PC party members next month, according to Houston. Depending what is decided, party members will vote in person or online for a new leader.

The next step will be the party leadership convention itself, which may be held in the fall.

Houston himself is on the leadership campaign trail, meeting with Nova Scotians across the province.

“It’s going great, just touring around listening to Nova Scotians and what they want for the future,” said Houston.

He added that health care, educations and opportunities for a better life were high on the public’s agenda.

“They want some hope for the future,” said Houston.

According to his Twitter feed, Houston visited Annapolis Royal Thursday and also tweeted a message of support to Dalhousie University’s Conservative members who hosted federal Conservative MP John Barlow.

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