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Premier vows to work with opposition

Working with the opposition parties, repairing relations with teachers and dealing with the Liberal government's past mistakes are some of the top priorities for the woman who will become Ontario's first female premier.

Kathleen Wynne, 59, won the Liberal leadership Saturday, while thousands of union activists and teachers angry over having contracts imposed on them protested outside the party's convention at the old Maple Leaf Gardens.

But while she wants to repair relations with teachers, who are angry at the Liberals for imposing contracts on them, the incoming premier made it clear she won't cave to their demands, and wants them to return to supervising after-class clubs and sports.

"I'm not going to rip up those contracts, but I've also been very clear that we have to engage in a conversation about extracurriculars," she told reporters Sunday.

Wynne, who will also be Canada's first openly gay premier, said she hopes her historic victory will give a message of hope to young gay people, but added she's not a gay activist and that's not why she entered politics.

Wynne said she wants to try to keep the minority government alive by working with the Progressive Conservatives and New Democrats rather than have a general election, and had a "very good" initial conversation with Opposition Leader Tim Hudak late Saturday night.

"Tim and I have always had a pretty collegial interaction with each other, I'm sure that will get more formal, but it was a good opening conversation and I'm going to take that at face value," she said.

"I will sit down with him and hope that we can find a way to have a conversation on the things that we can agree on."

The Canadian Press


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