Former Kingston and the Islands federal Member of Parliament Ted Hsu says he intends to seek the nomination as the local Ontario Liberal Party candidate in 2022. Hsu made his announcement over social media on Thursday, Jul 30.
Hsu is the second former politician to enter the race for the Liberal nomination for Kingston and the Islands this month. Former provincial MPP Sophie Kiwala also announced her intention to run as the Liberal candidate on Jul. 21.
Hsu said both his children and the pandemic have motivated him to return to politics.
“As my kids and their young friends have grown up and become aware of their world, they tell me how worried they are,” Hsu said. “They believe they are inheriting all our problems, but not the resources to deal with them.”
Hsu said that as he witnesses the human and economic costs of the pandemic, as well the retreat of democracy world-wide, strained international relations, workplace automation, social justice issues and climate change, he too is concerned for the future.
“I want to make sure our economy and social fabric are strong enough so that we have the resources to support and protect the people of Ontario,” he said.
Hsu said he hopes to offer a broader perspective on politics. “Government is not just about slicing up the pie for different groups who need help,” he said. “It also needs to be about helping our society bake a bigger pie as we serve more people.”
Hsu was elected federal MP in 2011, one of only 34 Liberals elected to parliament that year. Stephen Harper’s Conservatives held government, followed by the NDP who made strong gains to become the official opposition.
In 2013, Hsu was named by peers from all parties as the “MP who best represents constituents” in Maclean’s annual Parliamentarians of the Year awards. Hsu decided not to run for a second term in 2015, saying he wanted to spend more time with his family. He was replaced by current Liberal MP Mark Gerretsen.
Provincially, Kingston and the Islands is currently represented by NDP MPP Ian Arthur. Arthur won the seat from Kiwala in 2018, and was Kingston’s first NDP, and non-Liberal representative, since 1995.