NS Premier Stephen McNeil announces his departure from politics

Halifax – In a surprise move Thursday, August 6, Nova Scotia Premier Stephen McNeil – the man who uttered the now iconic words “stay the blazes home” – will be stepping down as premier of that province, and away from public office altogether.

“Yesterday, I celebrated my 17th year in elected office,” said McNeil in a statement released Thursday.

“These past seven years, as your premier, have been the most rewarding of my professional career. It has been a privilege and an honour, and something I have never taken for granted.

“Today, I am announcing I will be stepping down and leaving public office.”

“Since becoming the premier of New Brunswick, I have developed a strong working relationship with Stephen McNeil,” said New Brunswick Premier, Blaine Higgs.

“We have had the opportunity to collaborate on a number of files that have impacted both of our provinces, including the COVID-19 pandemic.”

“I love this job, and enjoyed every day of it,” said McNeil in a press briefing. “But this is not a lifelong career.”

“I know that in his next chapter of life, he will continue to be a strong contributor to Nova Scotia and to all of Canada,” said Higgs. “I wish Premier McNeil all the best, and I look forward to continuing to work with him closely in the months ahead until he officially steps away from public office.”

McNeil will remain in place while a new leader for the party is in place, which he expects to “take months”.