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The Hamilton Spectator
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Thursday April 6, 2006
Feeling duty-bound to prepare to seek the helm of the federal Liberals, Gerard Kennedy resigned Wednesday as Ontario's education minister, forcing Premier Dalton McGuinty to re-arrange the chairs around the provincial cabinet table.

Kennedy refused to discuss the details of his bid, confirming only that he was surrendering the only cabinet job he's ever held to "organize" his effort to succeed former federal Liberal leader Paul Martin.

"My reason for resigning such a valuable post is to organize my candidacy for leader of the Liberal Party of Canada," Kennedy told a packed news conference at the Ontario legislature.

McGuinty was effusive in his praise for Kennedy, who was considered the front-runner to succeed Lyn McLeod as the leader of the provincial party in 1996 until McGuinty pulled off a surprising upset victory.

"He's come to an important decision about his future and the role he wants to play in that future and I accept that decision and wish him nothing less than the very best," McGuinty said.

The premier noted that he wanted Kennedy to stay in cabinet, but also sympathized with the minister's divided loyalties in recent weeks as supporters have pushed him to seek the federal job.

"He's come to an important decision about his future and the role he wants to play in that future and I accept that decision and wish him nothing less than the very best," McGuinty said. (source)

Ontario's Gerard Kennedy to enter Liberal Race