By Robson Fletcher, Metro Calgary
Featured image: Candice Ward for Metro
October 22, 2013
To almost no one’s surprise, Naheed Nenshi was re-elected mayor of Calgary Monday in a decisive victory over second-place finisher Jon Lord and a field of seven other candidates.
Nenshi had 74 per cent of the vote at press time, leading by more than 67,000 votes over second-place Lord, who had 21 per cent of the vote.
The next closes candidate was Sandra Hunter, who ran on a platform of legalizing marijuana (even though that’s not within municipal jurisdiction), who had nearly 2,100 votes at press time, or two per cent of the vote.
“Thank you tonight for giving me the opportunity for another four (years),” Nenshi said in his acceptance speech late Monday night, as many of the ward races for city councillor remained up in the air.
The results of those races will determine exactly how much of Nenshi’s vision for the city he will be able to actually act on, as a majority of votes on the 15-person council is required to pass any bylaws.
For the time being, Nenshi said Calgary remains a great place to live and he looks forward to making it “even better” – his campaign slogan.
“Every single kid in every single corner of this community has the opportunity right here to live a great Canadian life,” Nenshi said, as his crowd of supporters applauded and chanted his name.
Despite the long odds against unseating the highly popular incumbent mayor, Lord said he felt he made a difference by running and giving voters a viable alternative.
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“Remember, I started this all by myself – no organization, no money – five weeks before election day,” he said. “We got issues out that are of great importance and great concern to the future of Calgary. Everybody in Calgary is now aware taxes have gone up 30 per cent. I don’t think anyone was aware of that five weeks ago.”