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Another Tory MLA rules out running in upcoming election, fourth in one month

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He’s the fourth Progressive Conservative in a month to announce he won’t be reoffering in the upcoming election.

And Daniel Allain says everyone has a different reason. He claims it was time to take a break.

“Getting married and having a baby was easy. Getting into politics was easy. Bowing out is extremely hard,” he said. “But at the end of the day, I stood for my values. I wouldn’t change anything.”

Allain was one of six Tory MLAs who voted with the Liberal opposition on a Policy 713 motion last June, against the Blaine Higgs’ government.

Jeff Carr was another and both were shuffled out of Premier Blaine Higgs’ cabinet after that vote.

Carr also announced this week he won’t be running in the Oct. 21 election.

In an interview with CTV News Atlantic, he said he does intend to have a conversation with Premier Higgs before his term is up.

“I've always felt that if I've had a misunderstanding with somebody or disagreeing with somebody, I always try to find a way to at least leave on, I guess, terms that are non-combative because we all sleep better at night knowing that. So there will be a point in time where that happens,” he said.

Earlier this week, Higgs said he wasn’t surprised to learn Carr was leaving politics.

“Everyone has different reasons why they leave. I think we have now 22 nominations that are concluded…we are seeing new people come into the system wanting to be part of a province that is successful,” he said.

Arlene Dunn and Mike Holland announced in February they would also not be running in the election.

University of New Brunswick political scientist J.P. Lewis says this could be an opportunity for Higgs.

“It could represent, obviously, dissatisfaction with leadership, which I mean, folks have been quite public about. We know that's going on. Many of these actions have not been surprising,” he said. “The glass-half-full view of it is this could be Higgs' is a chance to rebrand the party fully in his image.”

In sports’ terms, it could be seen as a rebuilding year for the PC Party, Lewis says.

“He is losing the folks that would appear to be the ones that were close to driving him out of the premier's office in 2023. And now for him, it might be seen it as a reset,” he said.

Allain says he believes in a fiscally conservative party that’s also socially progressive.

Carr brother legacy coming to an end

For the first time in 25 years, the legislature will not have a Carr brother sitting among its ranks. Jody, Jack and Jeff have all spent time as MLAs in the house.

Jody Carr was first elected in 1999 and left politics in 2018. Jack Carr won a byelection in 2008 and left in 2014.

For Jeff Carr, 2024 marks 10 years as an elected MLA.

“That's probably one of the harder things is that legacy will end,” he said. “A legacy of working for a community, standing up for people, because that's our job. Stand up for people that just can't stand up for themselves."

For more New Brunswick news visit our dedicated provincial page.

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