Former interim leader, longtime Conservative MP Candice Bergen steps down

Bergen was first elected to Parliament in 2008.

Former interim leader, longtime Conservative MP Candice Bergen steps down
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Former interim leader of the Conservative Party of Canada and current member of Parliament Candice Bergen is resigning, according to multiple reports.

The 58-year-old Bergen has represented Manitoba's Portage—Lisgar riding since 2008, and assumed the role of interim leader following the ouster of Erin O'Toole by the party's caucus after it failed to defeat Justin Trudeau's Liberals in the 2021 federal election.

Bergen remained interim leader until the party's leadership convention in September 2022, won by Pierre Poilievre. She did not participate as a candidate in the contest, saying last September that she would not seek re-election.

“Today I've submitted my letter of resignation as member of Parliament for Portage—Lisgar ending an incredible and very fulfilling 14 years serving my party, my caucus and my country,” Bergen said in a video posted to Twitter. “I'm choosing to leave now not because I'm tired or because I've run out of steam — in fact, it's the exact opposite. I feel hopeful and reenergized,” she continued, citing the “courageous and principled leadership” of Poilievre as reason for Conservatives to be optimistic.

She did not provide any rationale for her decision, nor did she outline what her future plans might be.

Last week, Manitoba Finance Minister Cameron Friesen announced that he'd step down as an MLA to run for the federal Conservative nomination in the riding, CBC reported.

Thanking her staff, constituents and colleagues in the House of Commons, Bergen said, “with God's and God's help, I believe that the best is yet to come. Thank you so much Portage—Lisgar, and thank you Canada.”

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