Canadian Conservatives lose MP, retain majority

Wed May 30, 2012 5:25pm EDT
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OTTAWA (Reuters) - A parliamentarian from Canada's ruling Conservatives Party has quit his job to go into provincial politics, but the Conservatives retain their majority in the House of Commons.

Lee Richardson, from the oil-rich province of Alberta, said he was leaving Parliament to take up a post as principal secretary to Alberta Premier Alison Redford.

The Conservatives still retain a healthy majority in the House of Commons, with 164 seats out of 308. And as Richardson is from Conservative-heavy Alberta, his seat will likely be filled by another Conservative.

The federal Conservatives were re-elected under Prime Minister Stephen Harper in 2011 and have used their majority to try to transform the economy to be more competitive, as well as to make it easier for big oil projects to be approved.

Redford is from Alberta's Progressive Conservative Party, which was long the main provincial option on the right. She successfully led her party to re-election last month, overcoming a challenge from the upstart Wildrose Party, which is further to the right.

(Reporting by Randall Palmer; Editing by Anthony Boadle)