|38th Leader of the Official Opposition in Ontario|
Assumed office |
June 29, 2018
|Lieutenant Governor||Elizabeth Dowdeswell|
|Preceded by||Vic Fedeli|
|Leader of the Ontario New Democratic Party|
Assumed office |
March 7, 2009
|Preceded by||Howard Hampton|
|Member of the Ontario Provincial Parliament|
for Hamilton Centre
Hamilton East (2004–2007)
Assumed office |
May 13, 2004
|Preceded by||Dominic Agostino|
|Hamilton City Councillor|
December 1, 1997 – June 16, 2004
Serving with Ron Corsini (1997–2000)
|Succeeded by||Bob Bratina|
October 24, 1962|
Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
|Political party||New Democratic|
|Domestic partner||Ben Leonetti (c. 1985–2010)|
|Alma mater||McMaster University|
|Occupation||Community development coordinator|
Andrea Horwath, MPP (// ( listen); born October 24, 1962) is a Canadian politician and community development coordinator who is the Leader of the Official Opposition in Ontario and Leader of the Ontario New Democratic Party. She is a member of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario, representing the riding of Hamilton Centre, and was chosen as the party's leader at its 2009 leadership convention.
She is the first woman to lead the Ontario New Democratic Party, and one of only three women to serve as leader of a political party with representation in the provincial legislature (former Ontario Liberal Party leaders Kathleen Wynne and Lyn McLeod are the other two).
Early life, education, early career
Horwath was born and raised in Hamilton, Ontario, and has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Labour Studies from McMaster University. She worked part-time as a waitress to pay her way through university. Her father Andrew, an ethnic Hungarian, had immigrated to Canada from Slovakia, and worked on the assembly line at the Ford Motor Company plant in Oakville, Ontario. Her mother, Diane, is of French and Irish descent.
She worked closely with the Hamilton labour movement for several years, programming and providing literacy, numeracy and ESL training for workers. She subsequently got involved in the cooperative housing movement in Welland, and later became a community development coordinator for Hamilton's McQuesten Legal & Community Services, providing public legal education to groups working with tenants, injured workers and people with disabilities.
In 1996 Horwath earned a certificate of achievement in anti-racism training, and was an organizer of Hamilton's Days of Action campaign against provincial government cutbacks announced by Mike Harris. That year she received the Woman of the Year Award in Public Affairs from the Hamilton Status of Women Committee, in recognition of her work in the community. She also dedicated her time and efforts toward the field of social housing, and was subsequently awarded the Graham Emslie Award for Community Development in Housing by the Canadian Housing and Renewal Association.
She lives in Hamilton with her son Julian (born November 1992). In a March 2011 interview with the Toronto Star, she spoke publicly for the first time about the breakup of her longtime relationship with Julian's father, Hamilton businessman Ben Leonetti. Horwath had met Ben Leonetti in her university years, when she was working part-time as a waitress and he was a jazz musician. The two lived together for 25 years without getting married and split up in 2010.
Early political career
In the Canadian federal election of 1997, she was the NDP candidate against incumbent Liberal Stan Keyes in the riding of Hamilton West. Although unsuccessful, her second-place finish was a significant improvement on previous NDP efforts in the riding, and gave her an increased level of prominence in the city.
Later in 1997, she was elected to Hamilton City Council for Ward Two, outpolling two incumbents who had represented the area for more than 20 years. She emerged as a prominent voice for the political left in the city, and was re-elected to council in 2000 and 2003. During her three terms as city councillor, she chaired the solid-waste-management committee and the municipal non-profit housing corporation.
Horwath was elected to the Legislative Assembly of Ontario in a 2004 by-election in the then-extant provincial riding of Hamilton East, defeating Liberal candidate Ralph Agostino to succeed the deceased Liberal member Dominic Agostino, Ralph's brother. Winning 63.6 per cent of the vote, up from the NDP's 29.4 per cent in that riding six months earlier, her landslide victory boosted the NDP's seat count over the threshold for official party status in the legislature, and helped give the federal New Democratic Party a bounce in Hamilton that would continue into the federal election shortly thereafter.
In the 2007 election, Horwath ran in the new riding of Hamilton Centre, due to redistricting that divided her former Hamilton East riding between Hamilton Centre and the new riding of Hamilton East—Stoney Creek. Horwath's new Hamilton Centre riding included approximately half of her former riding as well as a portion of the former Hamilton West riding where she had run federally in 1997. It also included her entire former city council ward.
In the leadup to the campaign, Horwath was expected to face Hamilton West Liberal incumbent Judy Marsales. However, Marsales opted not to run for another term, and Horwath easily defeated Liberal candidate Steve Ruddick on election day.
2009 NDP leadership campaign
On November 7, 2008, Horwath officially launched her campaign to win the party's leadership. The leadership election was held March 6–8, 2009. Horwath led on the first two ballots, and won on the third ballot with 60.4% of the vote defeating Peter Tabuns, Gilles Bisson and Michael Prue.
The 2011 provincial election saw a rise in support for the NDP under Horwath's leadership. The party won more than 20% of the popular vote for the first time since 1995 and almost doubled its seats to elect 17 members of the legislature. The election also resulted in the Liberal government of Dalton McGuinty being reduced to a minority government with the NDP holding the balance of power.
In April 2012, Horwath passed a leadership review at the party's convention with 76% support.
In the 2014 provincial election, the NDP was able to maintain its seat count of 21 at dissolution despite the loss of three seats in Toronto, but lost the balance of power when the Liberals took a majority win in the election. Horwath has faced criticism from some party members and progressives for running a populist campaign which they described as right-wing. Despite criticism of her leadership from some quarters, Horwath received a slightly increased level of support, 77%, at the party's post-election convention held on November 15.
Horwath ran in her third election as NDP leader against the Liberal government led by Kathleen Wynne and a Progressive Conservative Party led by Doug Ford. Horwath promised to introduce "Canada's first universal Pharmacare plan", highlighted by a universal dental plan and a prescription drug plan that "will initially cover 125 of the most commonly prescribed drugs". She also promised a child care plan in which seventy per cent of Ontario parents "would either have free child care or pay an average of $12 a day in a licensed not-for-profit daycare". Horwath promised to return Hydro One to public ownership by buying back privately held shares. She also said that she would close the Pickering Nuclear Generating Station immediately, while the other party leaders have pledged to keep it open until 2024. The NDP promised to increase corporate tax rates from 11.5 to 12.5 per cent, as well as introducing an income tax increase for those earning over $220,000 per year. Horwath said the province would fund half of the operating cost of municipal transit and indicated that she would not introduce back-to-work legislation.
The party's support in public opinion polls increased in May 2018, leading to greater media attention and greater scrutiny for Horwath and her party. She ultimately led the party to official opposition status in the Legislature, the second highest number of seats in the party's history.
In March 2012, Horwath received the EVE award which is sponsored by Equal Voice, a non-profit organization focused on promoting women in politics. Past recipients have included women from every level of government.
This section needs to be updated.(July 2018)
|New Democratic||Andrea Horwath||7,648||18.3|
|Progressive Conservative||John Findlay||6,510||15.5|
|Natural Law||Brian Rickard||323||0.8|
|Hamilton, Ontario municipal election, 1997: Ward 2|
|Vince Agro (incumbent)||2,097||16.4%|
|Bill McCulloch (incumbent)||2,097||16.4%|
|Total valid votes||12,767||100.00|
|Hamilton, Ontario municipal election, 2000: Ward 2|
|Andrea Horwath (incumbent)||4,601||63.81%|
|Note: All Hamilton Municipal Elections are officially non-partisan. |
Note: Candidate campaign colours are based on the prominent colour used in campaign items (signs, literature, etc.)
and are used as a visual differentiation between candidates.
|Sources: City of Hamilton, "2003 Results"|
|New Democratic||Andrea Horwath||15,185||63.6|
|Progressive Conservative||Tara Crugnale||1,772||7.4|
|New Democratic||Andrea Horwath||17,182||44.6|
|Progressive Conservative||Chris Robertson||5,711||14.8|
|Family Coalition||Lynne Scime||553||1.4|
|New Democratic||Andrea Horwath||20,528||61.3||+16.7|
|Progressive Conservative||Don Sheppard||4,418||13.2||−1.6|
|Family Coalition||Steve Passmore||229||0.7||−0.9|
|Total valid votes||33,508||100.0|
Source: "Declared Candidates", The Hamilton Spectator July 23, 2011, A6, News,
Teri Pecoskie. "Liberals give lawyer Hamilton Centre nod", The Hamilton Spectator August 22, 2011, News
|New Democratic||Andrea Horwath||18,699||52.05||−9.28|
|Progressive Conservative||John Vail||5,136||14.30||+1.13|
|Total valid votes||35,923||100.0|
|New Democratic hold||Swing||−7.67|
|Source: Elections Ontario|
- NDP Leader gets up close and personal, by Anna Mehler Paperny, The Globe and Mail, September 24, 2011, p. A4
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on June 16, 2013. Retrieved February 22, 2017.
- "Horwath opens up about life as a single mom". Toronto Star, March 11, 2011.
- "Anger is a big motivator for NDP's Andrea Horwath", by Linda Diebel, Toronto Star, October 3, 2011, pp. A1, A3
- Murray Campbell, "Horwath elected Ontario NDP Leader". The Globe and Mail, March 7, 2009.
- Walkom, Thomas (May 28, 2014). "Gang of 34 letter points to real problems within Horwath's NDP". Toronto Star. Retrieved May 15, 2017.
- Leslie, Keith (November 15, 2014). "Andrea Horwath wins 77 percent in leadership review at NDP convention, will stay on as leader". National Post. Retrieved May 15, 2017.
- "Andrea Horwath unveils $1.2B public dental plan". Toronto Star. Retrieved May 30, 2018.
- "Ontario NDP pledges full dental coverage as part of universal health care plan". Retrieved May 30, 2018.
- "NDP promises $12-a-day child care and lower deficits if elected". Toronto Star. Retrieved May 30, 2018.
- "An NDP government would not use back-to-work legislation to end strikes, party leader Andrea Horwath says - The Star". Retrieved May 30, 2018.
- "Promises from Ontario's 3 main political parties on nuclear and booze". May 22, 2018. Retrieved May 30, 2018.
- Leslie, Keith (May 22, 2014). "Ontario NDP would hike corporate taxes: Horwath". Retrieved May 30, 2018.
- "As Ontario NDP rises in polls, its platform and candidates get closer scrutiny - CBC News". Retrieved May 30, 2018.
- "Ontario NDP, Liberals talk transit promises after Ford pledges gas price cut". May 17, 2018. Retrieved May 30, 2018.
- "NDP, Tories tied at 37 per cent support, new poll suggests; Liberals trail at 21". Global News. May 24, 2018. Retrieved May 24, 2018.
- Brean, Joseph (June 8, 2018). "An opportunity missed, Andrea Horwath welcomes loss as victory". National Post. Retrieved July 3, 2018.
She meant the NDP's 33 per cent of the popular vote and 40 ridings is the best showing in a provincial election since Rae
- "Equal Voice Toronto announces 2012 EVE Award Recipient Andrea Horwath". 2012. Retrieved May 21, 2013.
- Eric McGuinness, "Horwath turns tables on Corsini to clinch lone Ward 2 seat", The Hamilton Spectator, 11-14-00"
- "General Election Results by District, 031 Hamilton Centre". Elections Ontario. 2014. Archived from the original on June 17, 2014. Retrieved June 17, 2014.