Celine Haytayan, running under the CAQ banner, was elected in the riding of Laval-des-Rapides.
She garnered 31 per cent of the vote, to beat out incumbent Saul Polo.
She believes what gave her the edge was speaking to issues that were important to voters.
“The economy –inflation worries everyone and all the measures that we have to help out people and reassure people with this inflation,” she said.
In Laval, all six seats featured two-way battles between the Liberals and the CAQ.
Monday night, Saint-Rose remained blue, but Vimont, Fabre and Laval des-Rapides, all former Liberal ridings, changed colours, shifting the political landscape.
“That’s the problem for the Liberals moving forward,” said Daniel Béland of the McGill Institute for the Study of Canada. “They have become so marginal among francophones, in terms of francophone voters. Unless it’s an area where you have a high level of language and ethnic diversity, it’s just very hard for (the Liberals) to win seats.”
François Legault campaigned hard in Laval in September telling voters on a stop in Mille-Îles that it was time the city changed colours.
And though most of the city did flip, there were tight races like the one in Fabre, where the CAQ candidate just edged out her Liberal opponent by about 300 votes.
Beland says the Liberals need to reach out and regain support among francophone voters, lest they risk remaining a Montreal-centric party with little chance of returning to power in Laval or in the national assembly.
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