June 10, 2009 / 3:39 PM / in 8 years

Left-wing party breaks through in Atlantic Canada

OTTAWA (Reuters) - The New Democratic Party swept the ruling Progressive Conservatives from office in Nova Scotia in a provincial election on Tuesday, giving the left-wing party its first opportunity to form a government in Atlantic Canada.

<p>New Democratic Party leader Darrell Dexter gestures to supporters while flanked by (from L) Member of Legislative Assembly (MLA) Michele Raymond, MLA Marilyn More, wife Kelly and son Harris during a victory rally in Dartmouth, NS. June 9, 2009. REUTERS/Paul Darrow</p>

The party, led by lawyer Darrell Dexter, won 31 of the 52 seats in the legislature. It offered more social spending and an elimination of the sales tax on home heating, while promising more vaguely to live within the province’s means.

The Progressive Conservatives, which had been in power for a decade, were reduced to third-party status, behind the opposition Liberals.

Reporting by Randall Palmer; Editing by Frank McGurty

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