Manitoba First (French: Manitoba D'abord) was a provincial political party in the Canadian province of Manitoba. It was registered by Elections Manitoba on March 24, 2016 and originally called the Manitoba Party.[2]

Manitoba First
Manitoba D'abord
Defunct provincial party
FoundedMarch 24, 2016 (March 24, 2016)
DissolvedMarch 3, 2022 (March 3, 2022)
Political positionRight-wing[1]
  • Blue
  • green
Seats in Legislature
0 / 57
Website Edit this at Wikidata

It ran 16 candidates in the 2016 general election, garnering 4,887 votes, or 1.1 per cent of the total vote. The party placed second in Arthur-Virden and Spruce Woods.

Steven Fletcher,[3] who was elected to the Legislative Assembly of Manitoba in 2016 as a Progressive Conservative, joined the party in August 2018 and became the party leader in September 2018, but did not seek re-election in the September 2019 general election.

On August 6, 2019, the party changed its name to Manitoba First and Douglas Petrick was listed as the new leader.[4][5] In the 2019 election, the party won no seats.

The party deregistered on March 3, 2022.[6]

Leadership controversy edit

On August 13, 2018, then-independent MLA Steven Fletcher joined the Manitoba Party.[7] On September 11, 2018, Fletcher became leader of the Manitoba Party, despite the protestations of previous board members who claimed they were unaware of Fletcher's plans.[8] Two of these former board members filed court documents in December 2018, seeking Fletcher's ouster after claiming that the previous leader, Gary Marshall, "gave" Fletcher the leadership without authority, as Marshall had been removed as party leader following a unanimous vote during a board meeting in July 2018. Marshall claimed the board meeting never occurred, while Fletcher maintains he knew nothing about any internal disputes, and that the leadership change was done in accordance with the law.[9]

The party logo used when Steven Fletcher became leader in September 2018 until the party rebranded as Manitoba First in August 2019.

On May 22, 2019, Fletcher announced he would be running in the 2019 Canadian federal election as a candidate for the People's Party of Canada. He ran in the federal riding of Charleswood—St. James—Assiniboia—Headingley, which he had previously represented from 2004 to 2015 as a member of the Conservative Party of Canada.[10] Subsequently, Fletcher resigned as leader of the party and David Sutherland, 2016 candidate in the riding of Dawson Trail, was listed as leader.[11]

2016 platform edit

In an interview with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation in January 2016, then-leader Gary Marshall stated the new party is "...a party of tax cuts",[12] and its platform included a pledge to lower the provincial sales tax rate to 5 per cent from 8 percent, removal of PST charges on all food purchases, and changing the personal and business income tax rates to a flat 10 per cent, among other proposals.[13]

The party also proposed to remove all red light and speed cameras from intersections and mobile units, eradicate government regulations "... that impede trade and commerce", and changing how tax revenues are allocated among education, municipalities, and so on.

The original party logo under the Manitoba Party name used in the 2016 election.

Election results edit

Election Leader Votes % Swing Seats % Seats +/– Rank Status
2016[14] Gary Marshall 4,887 1.1 New party
0 / 57
0   5th Extra-parliamentary
2019[15] Douglas Petrick 647 0.1  1.0
0 / 57
0   6th Extra-parliamentary

References edit

  1. ^ Annable, Kristin (April 26, 2016). "So-called fringe party garners game-changing votes". Winnipeg Free Press. Retrieved September 13, 2023.
  2. ^ "Manitoba Party joins election fray". Winnipeg Sun. March 24, 2016.
  3. ^ "About – Manitoba Party".
  4. ^ "Political Parties – 2019 Annual Report" (PDF). Elections Manitoba. Retrieved July 11, 2023.
  5. ^ "Political Parties". Internet Archive - Elections Manitoba. Retrieved July 17, 2023.
  6. ^ "2022 Annual Report" (PDF). Elections Manitoba. Retrieved July 11, 2023.
  7. ^ "MLA Biographies - Living". Legislative Assembly of Manitoba. Government of Manitoba. Retrieved October 12, 2023.
  8. ^ "Ousted Tory MLA Steven Fletcher takes reins as leader of Manitoba Party". CBC News. September 11, 2018. Retrieved April 13, 2019.
  9. ^ "Two Manitoba Party activists want judge to oust Steven Fletcher as leader". CBC News. September 14, 2018. Retrieved April 13, 2019.
  10. ^ "Manitoba MLA Steven Fletcher to run for People's Party of Canada". CBC News. May 22, 2019. Retrieved June 2, 2019.
  11. ^ "Registered Parties in Manitoba". Elections Manitoba. Retrieved June 2, 2019.
  12. ^ "More tax cuts the 'answer to all' Manitoba's problems, new party says". CBC News. January 23, 2016.
  13. ^ "Our Platform". The Manitoba Party. Retrieved March 27, 2016.
  14. ^ "2016 Election Summary". Elections Manitoba. Retrieved March 2, 2019.
  15. ^ "2019 Election Summary" (PDF). Elections Manitoba. Retrieved May 29, 2020.

External links edit