From the earliest results, Stephen McNeil was in the lead, quickly pulling ahead of Progressive Conservative Ginny Hurlock, New Democrat Colin Sproul, Green Zac Crockatt and Atlantica Kent Robinson. An hour after polls closed, he had more than double the number of votes cast for his closest competitor.
Here are the incomplete results
Liberal – Stephen McNeil: 2,335
Progressive Conservative – Ginny Hurlock: 591
NDP – Colin Sproul: 759
Green – Zac Crockatt: 141
Atlantica – Kent Robinson: 61
It’s obvious the Riding of Annapolis is one to watch given that it’s home to the 39th premier and Liberal leader. McNeil won the riding with 75.88 per cent of the votes in 2013 – his best showing ever. In fact, his support has increased in every election since 1999, when he lost in his first outing to Frank Chipman.
The actual race in this riding was for second place. Hurlock, a Tory, is back for her second attempt to oust McNeil.
McNeil is not her competition - NDP candidate Colin Sproul is. He’s a fisherman and industry spokesman, and has been crisscrossing the riding during this election campaign and has developed a following. His family roots are Liberal, and he’s the first to admit that.
"We gained significant ground in the riding and heard from a lot of people who were not intending to vote Liberal again, Hurlock said Tuesday evening. "We're happy that we took some votes away from McNeil and look forward to the future.
"People were telling us that they were upset with the McNeil government whether it was in regards to health care, education, or seniors care. They felt like McNeil wasn't present, and they felt forgotten by him."
In 2013, Hurlock won 13.68 per cent of the vote in 2013, with New Democrat Henry Spurr receiving only 8.21 per cent. The Greens had 2.23 per cent.
This election, the Green’s Zac Crockatt is a young, military veteran and, while inexperienced, is earnest in his campaigning. He wants a better future for his three young children.
This time around, the Atlantica Party has fielded 21 candidates province-wide, including one in Annapolis. Kent Robinson ran for the PCs in 2009 and shows up as the Atlantica candidate this time.