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The Liberals fended off a surprising Green party charge to win the federal by-election in London North Centre in Ontario on Monday night.

Over in the Montreal-area riding of Repentigny, the Bloc Québécois cruised to an easy victory.

Liberal Glen Pearson took over a third of the vote to stave off Elizabeth May, leader of the Green party, who finished second in a bid to win her party's first seat in the Commons.

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Ms. May siphoned votes from all the other parties in fashioning her unexpectedly strong challenge.

The Conservatives and the NDP were well back in the riding, which has been a Liberal seat for two decades.

In Repentigny, Raymond Gravel, who went from gay hooker to Roman Catholic priest, carried the Bloc to unsurprising win, grabbing nearly 70 per cent of the vote.

Father Repentigny came open after Bloc MP Benoit Sauvageau died in a traffic accident in August.

The London seat was left vacant after Liberal Joe Fontana resigned to make a failed bid to become the city's mayor.

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