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HomeNewsCandidates for Leeds-Grenville-Thousand Islands and Rideau Lakes speak on election’s importance

Candidates for Leeds-Grenville-Thousand Islands and Rideau Lakes speak on election’s importance

The upcoming election has been met with apprehension from many people, even as election day approaches and instructions on how to vote are mailed out. In a series of exclusive interviews with, the local candidates in the election gave their opinions on why it should matter to voters.

The Liberal Party’s Roberta Abbott says that current circumstances compelled her to run for office. “I contemplated it back in 2019,” Abbott says. “I felt compelled to get back into public service in a more direct way, because I felt that we really need continuity in our government right now.”

Incumbent Conservative candidate Michael Barrett says that, to him, this election represents a chance for change at an important time. “Now, we’re presented with an opportunity to deliver for Canadians. We have a very positive vision to secure the future for Canadians under Conservative leader Erin O’toole.” He specifically mentioned healthcare, digital infrastructure and job restoration as areas he wanted to focus on.

People’s Party candidate Alex Cassell says that this election will determine the rights and freedoms of future generations of Canadians. “Not just for ourselves here, as adults, as business owners, fathers and mothers,” Cassell says, “but for the children’s future.” 

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“It may not be the first year, it may not be the fifth year, but down the road, this is a small piece that slowly converts our society to one that is 100 percent regulated by the government in our day to day lives.”

NDP candidate Michelle Taylor feels that we shouldn’t be having an election right now. “[Trudeau] wants a majority, because he has no interest in cooperating with other parties in the House, which, honestly, is the fundamentals of democracy,” Taylor says. 

“And we’re doing this in the middle of a pandemic, no less. At the price of, I heard, upwards of $600 million. Essentially, all this election is, is a Liberal ego trip. But if he’s going to force us to go down this road anyway, let’s take the opportunity to actually put a government in power who will do what needs to be done for Canadians.”

Lorraine Rekmans of the Green Party feels similarly. “I actually thought parliament was working well together. Bills were being passed, and there was collaboration in the House of Commons,” Rekmans says. “We’ve come through a pandemic, and we saw a lot of cooperation in the House of Commons, so I don’t really agree that this election was necessary.”

“However, I agree that the issue of climate change is upon us, and it’s going to require rapid and immediate response, and I think that’s gotta be forefront in voter’s minds.”

An all-candidates debate about climate change is scheduled for September 7th. Election day is September 20th.

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