Ontario Health Minister Christine Elliot is once again calling it a day from politics after coming back in 2018 in the riding of Newmarket-Aurora.
In a statement Elliot said that after 16 years in public life its time to hang her hat up and move on, "After considerable reflection and discussion with my family, it is with deep gratitude for my 16 years in public life that I recently shared with Premier Ford I will not be seeking re-election in the upcoming provincial contest in June. "
Elliot says that she is staying on as Minister of Health until the next election though, "Between now and this spring, Premier Ford has asked me to continue to support our government as Minister of Health and I have agreed without hesitation."
Elliot was first elected in 2006 after her late husband, Jim Flaherty, jumped from Ontario Politics to Federal Politics.
Upon leaving, Elliot said that she was proud of the work that she has done in her 16 years in office, and is leaving proud, "I saw gaps in care and that motivated me to action. I am so proud to have worked on these issues as the critic for the Official Opposition, Ontario's first Patient Ombudsman and most recently as Deputy Premier and Minister of Health."
Along with Premier Doug Ford, Elliott was the face of the pandemic response in Ontario, she added that Ford's leadership during the pandemic was strong and helped keep Ontario families safe, "I have no doubt the people of Ontario will return them to government to continue the critical work of protecting Ontarians' health and safety, while recovering from the pandemic. "
Elliot was elected in the riding of Whitby-Oshawa from 2006 to her first retirement in 2015. Then she resigned as an MPP to become Ontarios first Patient Ombubsman under the Ontario Liberals. She served in that role until 2018 when she resigned to run for the leadership fo the Progressive Conservatives after former Leader Patrick Brown abruptly departed. She lost that leadership race to Doug Ford.
Elliot had run for the leadership twice before 2019, once in 2009 losing to Tim Hudak, and then again in 2013 losing to Patrick Brown.
Elliot becomes the 10 PC MPP to announce their retirement from politics, and the 17 MPP to announce their departure.
The next general election is scheduled for June 2nd, 2022.