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Hastings-Lennox and Addington MP says he was surprised by Andrew Scheer’s decision to step down as party leader

Conservative Party leader Andrew Scheer is stepping down from his role but says he will remain as the party’s leader until a new one is chosen.

“Andrew Scheer told caucus he made his final decision last night,” MP for Hastings-Lennox and Addington Derek Sloan tells My Bancroft Now. “He made it clear it was not because of calls for his resignation.” Sloan says he believes Scheer put a lot of thought into stepping down as the party leader, adding that he respects his decision.

Sloan says there have been “rumours flying” since the election about Scheer stepping down as party leader, and he assumes those rumours will continue to fly.

“The only thing he told us is that he had a very frank conversation with his family and kids,” Sloan says. He adds that Scheer said he wants to make sure whoever leads the Conservatives into the next election is able to give 100-percent. Sloan says much of Scheer’s speech focused on his family and how he was concerned about having to put them through another election campaign.

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Along with staying on as party leader until a new one is chosen, Scheer will also continue to serve as MP of Regina-Qu-Appelle.

“I want to reassure the constituents of our riding that this news doesn’t prevent me from what I’ve been elected to do,” Sloan says. Even without a party leader, he says he will continue to fight for “jobs, fairness, and freedom.”

Details have yet to be released on what will be done by the Conservative Party to choose a new leader, but Sloan tells My Bancroft Now he believes the Conservative Party National Council will meet today to determine the guidelines for the leadership race and when that will begin. Scheer also called for the National Council to “immediately” begin work on organizing a leadership contest.

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