Allies and rivals offer praise for outgoing MPP

A long-time member of the Ontario Progressive Conservative caucus offered personal thanks to retiring MPP Tim Hudak on his final day in the legislature.

Lisa MacLeod, MPP for Nepean-Carleton, paid tribute to former PC leader Hudak, Thursday morning, during his last appearance at Queen’s Park.

“I was struggling with depression,” MacLeod said. “He would sit with me, either here at Queen’s Park or on the phone when I was at home, and he would try to boost me up. Sometimes that was daily. That’s the Tim Hudak I know: well brought up, always deserving of my loyalty, always a friend.”

Tim Hudak, 48, was first elected in 1995 at the age of 27 after winning his riding in Niagara West-Glanbrook. Hudak served in the cabinet of former Ontario premier Mike Harris and was elected PC leader in 2009, but failed to defeat the liberal government in both the 2011 and 2014 elections.

In 2014 Hudak was met with a lot of criticism after he promised to fire 10,000 public sector workers if the Tories were elected, an issue many blamed for Hudak’s defeat.

Political rival at Queen’s Park, Liberal MPP James Bradley (St. Catharines), said that Hudak was admired by his piers and was a good friend to all.

“He always had a smile on his face when he was in politics, which we liked very much,” Bradley said. “Tim has been a friend in the past and he’ll be a friend for a lifetime.”

Hudak will take on the position of CEO of the Ontario Real Estate Association.