"The pace of this Ontario PC leadership race has been rapid and there have been a number of unexpected turns along the way", Elliott said in a statement released at around 8 p.m. "Ontario needs a Progressive Conservative government to finally defeat Kathleen Wynne".
"The grassroots people are rising up right now".
"Doug Ford and I disagree on a lot of things, that's a reality, that's not news to anyone".
Party members voted mainly online to rank their preferred candidates, and the leader was picked through a complex points system that allocated the ballot results among electoral districts. His message to voters centres on fixing the province's finances and reducing taxes, largely through cutting waste.
"Whatever it takes, as long as we get it right and then we're behind whoever the candidate is", said Jeffrey Thomson, a longtime party member.
"And when you get it up and going, it's going to help drive the economy". "We knew it was going to be a close race but we didn't expect it to be that close".
Omar Khan, vice-president for engagement with the Ontario Liberal Party and vice-president for public affairs with Hill+Knowlton strategies, says Liberals need to stay the course to win. We must come together and defeat [Ontario Premier] Kathleen Wynne in the next election. "There will be a stark choice in June, I don't think that's news to anyone".
Saturday's delay in announcing a victor was the latest in a long list of challenges that have plagued the party since Brown's departure.
Political newcomer Caroline Mulroney raised more than $800,000, but finished a distant third.
"Because the race was so close, and a relative handful of disputed ballots could have changed the results if they were attributed to the wrong riding, a careful review was needed to ensure Ford had actually won". "Everyone in the province is frustrated", Mr. Ford told the television network CityNews on Monday. "We have different visions for the province, but make no mistake about it - I have a great deal of respect for the premier on campaigning and never underestimate her".
Soon after the voting results were announced, Mulroney and Granic Allen took to Twitter to congratulate Ford.
'Most LGBT Conservatives, they're Conservatives for a reason, ' said Lorenzen.
The MPP for Renfrew Nippissing Pembroke is calling his new party leader the next Premier of Ontario.
Bailey and Lambton-Kent-Middlesex MPP Monte McNaughton both are expressing confidence that Ford can lead the Conservatives to victory in the June 7 provincial election.
"I think he can reach outside of the traditional Conservative base and reach communities the Conservatives have stumbled to attract in past elections", he said, listing the areas around Toronto as an example.
With the horror of the last three elections still haunting the conservatives, the big question will be: Does Doug Ford give the PCs a better kick at the can than Patrick Brown?
In a final vote count-known by 3 p.m. yesterday-but kept under wraps until late into evening hours-Ford was finally declared the victor.
Recent polling seems to support Ford.
Party officials argued that delaying the race would damage its chances in the pending election, adding that the roughly 64,000 people who had successfully voted represented an all-time high for voter turnout. Cochrane said. "He can resonate with blue collars and trades people".