Ontario MPP and two-time Tory leadership hopeful Christine Elliott announced her resignation on Aug 29, 2015.
Elliott, who served as an MPP for nine years, had made herself a reputation as an LGBT ally. Though she did vote against a bill that would have ensured students could form GSAs in both public and Catholic schools, she told the Toronto Star at the time that it was because the Liberal government opposed the Tory’s own Bill 14, which they said had tougher measures.
She also co-sponsored Toby’s Act, which added gender identity and gender expresion to the Ontario Human Rights Code. Earlier this year, she rose in support of Bill 77, which banned conversion therapy in Ontario.
Elliott invoked the untimely death of trans teen Leelah Alcorn during the second reading of Bill 77. “Her tragic and senseless death should serve as a reminder for everyone here of the severe consequences associated with continuing to permit discrimination in the form of conversion therapy.”
Elliott threw her hat into the PC leadership race after Tim Hudak resigned following the 2014 election. Though originally considered a front-runner, she was sidelined by Patrick Brown, who made serious inroads by signing up new PC party members in untapped communities.
Her opponents in the race were also able to use the growing uproar around updates to Ontario’s sex education curriculum as a wedge issue. Monte McNaughton accused her of creating a “little pink tent” that excluded opponents of the curriculum in an email to supporters. Elliott, along with several other MPPs, would later appear in legislature dressed in pink as a show of support.
In a statement to the Globe and Mail, Elliott said that though her role was changing, she was still committed to “advocating for a fully inclusive Ontario.”