Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Liberals nominate in Nickel Belt

The federal Liberals filled out their northern Ontario slate last night, with communications entrepreneur Joe Cormier, who owns a company which operates 2 local radio stations. The riding is currently held by Claude Gravelle of the NDP who took the riding in the last election after the retirement of Liberal MP Raymond Bonin.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Liberals vs. PC's on the environment

I'm blogging here from the Collingwood Conference, and so far I've sat in on a number of interesting sessions, in particular one about clean water technology and how Ontario must be a global leader in green tech and creating green jobs. All this innovative talk of creating a 21st century green knowledge economy got me thinking about comparing the stands of the Liberals and the PC's on environmental issues. Let's take a look:


-Passed the Green Energy Act, a globally recognized move that will help creating 50,000 new green jobs in Ontario.

-Will bring in the Water Opportunities Act, which will build on the great private investment companies have made in clean water technologies in Ontario. The Conference Board of Canada estimates the global market for water technology at more than $400 billion US dollars per year and doubling every five to six years, and Ontario companies are already employing 22,000 people in good, high-paying Ontario jobs selling water technology around the world. We need to keep building on this.

-As part of Ontario's Clean Technology Mission to India late last year, McGuinty ensured Ontario green tech firms got deals worth over $250 million, expanding Ontario's green tech sector into one the world's fastest growing and most important markets.


-Don't believe provincial government's have a role in fighting climate change at all. PC environment critic Toby Barrett has said that efforts to adapt our economy and create jobs belong"in an international forum", absolving provincial governments of responsibility and opportunities.

-Barrett and the PC's have fought tooth and nail against the eventual closure of coal fired plants in favour of cleaner energy sources. The healthcare costs due to dirty air generated by these plants in estimated to be $4 billion annually.

-Barrett said that Ontario taking action to create green jobs and fight climate change were "provincial tinkering".

-PC frontbencher and endorser of Tim Hudak's leadership Randy Hillier told environmental activists to "stop breathing" in response to criticism.

-Hillier has openly denied climate change:

"Randy Hillier...isn't shy about casting doubt on the prevailing scientific theory about global warming...Mr. Hillier made the comments while arguing in favour of keeping Ontario's coal-burning power plants open...As to the greenhouse gases, don't worry about them, Mr. Hillier said"

-The Ontario Landowners association's (of which Hillier used to be the president, and which has declared plans to attempt to win PC nominations in ridings across Ontario for the next election) Glengarry branch sponsored a screening of the trash climate change denial "documentary" The Great Global Warming Swindle in August 2008.

-The Unanimous Declaration of independent Landowners Associations on the 25th day of February, 2006 makes explicit reference to "false environmentalism".

Who do you trust to create 21st century jobs?

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Winnipeg North could be a contest for the Liberals

With MLA Kevin Lamoureux already in the race for the federal Liberal nomination, he could soon be joined by Winnipeg city councillor Mike Pagtakhan who says "People have been asking me to consider it. I’m giving it some further thought. At this point, it’s possible...I’m sort of in self-evaluation mode right now." Mike is the nephew of Rey Pagtakhan, who was the Liberal MP for the area from 1988-2004, when seat redistribution put him up against Judy Wasylycia-Leis, who he had originally defeated in 1993 but was elected in a next door riding in 1997. The new riding was more NDP heavy which lead to his defeat.

The article also confirms that Kevin Chief will go after the NDP nomination.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Tories drop Guergis in Simcoe-Grey

Guergis has officially lost the Tory nomination in Simcoe-Grey. She, along with every other Tory MP, was automatically re-nominated last year. So far, 4 potential candidates have come up:

-Kellie Leitch, a Toronto surgeon and director of the Health Sector MBA program at the University of Western Ontario's Richard Ivey School of Business with strong ties to the Ontario Tory establishment. Her potential appointment as a candidate has caused friction between Tory HQ and the EDA. The party says they won't appoint her, and Leitch has said she "has no intention of being a candidate", however, both these statements came before Guergis lost the nomination.

-New Tecumseth mayor Mike MacEachern is said he was "not ruling out the idea" of going after the nomination should it become available. He has served two terms of mayor.

-Also from New Tecumseth, Ward 5 councillor Jess Prothero, who has given it "serious consideration".

-Blue Mountains mayor Ellen Anderson is mentioned here ( as a potential entry into the race. Her running to replace Guergis would be ironic considering the green energy dealing Rahim Jaffer had with help from Guergis, and Anderson seconded a motion against wind farm development and the provincial Green Energy Act for Grey County. ( It's worth noting that the motion endorsed the junk science position taken by the Ontario PC Party against the "health risks" of wind power (which no independent study has ever found)

-Chris Carrier, mayor of Collingwood, has a "rumoured interest" in the nomination.

-Tory MPP Jim Wilson has apparently come up as a potential candidate, and says ""I'm obviously flattered by the suggestion,but I have not commented on the issue to date." It is worth noting that Wilson has already been nominated by the Ontario PC's for the 2011 election.

Given that members of the EDA have publically backed Guergis, it will be interesting to see if see considers an independent run.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

More nomination drama in Simcoe-Grey

With 3 potential nomination candidates already established ( the local riding association is resisting efforts by Tory HQ to appoint a star (and parachute) candidate, Kellie Leitch, a surgeon and director of the Health Sector MBA program at the University of Western Ontario's Richard Ivey School of Business. The riding association has uncharacteristically harsh words for HQ:

"...Head office personnel have deliberately interfered with, obstructed and circumvented our autonomy as an association, and our right to freely express our opinions...The concerns we express go to the heart of grassroots democracy, fairness, respect for the relevance and autonomy of EDA's that operate within the Conservative Party's constitution and their EDA constitution."

The article goes on to paint a scene of a riding association divided between Guergis diehards and party loyalists, which could potentially lead to a nasty split.

Also, in all this talk of Guergis loyalists fighting a "parachute" candidate, it is worth noting that Guergis was a parachute/sacrificial lamb candidate for the Ontario PC's in the 2003 provincial election in the downtown Toronto riding of Trinity-Spadina.