On Mar.17 four federal ridings in Canada hosted byelections. Residents of Toronto Centre, Willowdale, Vancouver Quadra and Desnethe-Missinippi-Churchill River (northern Saskatchewan) went to the polls in what seemed to be a prelude to a general election that could take place as early as this spring. Stephane Dion’s Liberals needed to win at least three of the seats to keep himself entrenched as leader of the opposition and to fight off any uprising within the party due to his lackluster performance. Dion was able to achieve this feat and now has some solid backing in Ottawa with Bob Rae, Martha Hall Findlay and Joyce Murray joining him on Parliament Hill. His only defeat came from the hands of the Conservatives in Saskatchewan, where a Liberal candidate controversy may have cost him this key battleground.
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