He’s the man being hailed as the giant slayer in Monday’s election, but many voters may not even know his name.
David Buckingham surprised many by narrowly unseating NDP leader Cam Broten in Saskatoon Westview by just 232 votes.
The rookie Saskatchewan Party MLA arrived to a hero’s welcome of cheering and chanting at the Sask. Party’s post-election event in Saskatoon after a down-to-the-last-poll race.
“It was a nail bitter right to the end,” said Buckingham.
While this may be his debut into provincial politics, it’s not his first political gig.
Buckingham served as mayor of Borden, 50 kilometres northwest of Saskatoon on Highway 16, for two terms and a councillor for one year before that. He resigned from the mayor’s chair last year once he was nominated to the Sask. Party.
“At that time I knew it was going to be a lot of work so I stepped down to make sure that community had a proper leadership,” he said.
Buckingham said he got a taste for provincial politics after working with the government when flooding threatened Borden in 2013.
“That helped to form some friendships and you understand the bigger picture of trying to help people.”
He said he developed a one-year plan to door knock within his riding and get to know community members.
In February, he took a leave of absence from his work as a commercial semi-trailer driver to focus on the campaign full time.
Buckingham, his wife and three children still live in Borden, but it’s unclear if the family will move to Saskatoon following the election.
“One hundred per cent of my focus has been getting on the doorstep,” he said.