SDSG - Jan. 21, 2011 - Is anyone in Stormont, Dundas & South Glengarry ready for a spring election? Michael Ignatieff seems convinced that many of you want an election in early spring 2011. Last week Ignatieff launched his 2 week pre-election tour through 20 targeted ridings across Canada. He claims to have heard from Canadians during his summer tour that most of them are fed up with the Conservative Government and want a change. One of the stops on the summer tour happened to be in Cornwall. While his broken down tour bus was being repaired at Harper Diesel in Cornwall, he attended a meeting of Liberal supporters in the city. I wonder if most of those in attendance indicated they wanted to go to the polls. That is not the feedback that I received about the meeting.
I spend a lot of time communicating with constituents throughout SD&SG and I can honestly say that 95% of constituents have said they do not want an election. They inform me that if we, Conservatives, provoke an election they would probably vote against us because of the amount of money necessary to conduct one. They also make the point that the result of a general election at this time would end in another minority Conservative Government which would be a waste of $300 million. I agree with this assessment. I do not believe the seat count in the House of Commons would change very much if an election were held this spring. My Conservative colleagues throughout the country are hearing exactly the same thing. Actually some Liberal MPs also report hearing identical messages. So where is Michael Ignatieff getting his information? Who knows?
Just about every pollster or political pundit in the country agrees that a spring election will achieve very little. Most journalists are hearing the same information as we Members of Parliament. Canadians are telling us loud and clear, "no election"!
There are a number of reasons why an election this spring is a bad idea. Besides wasting almost 1/3 of a billion dollars to achieve the same result, a spring election would jeopardize our economic recovery. As you know, we are slowly climbing out of the worst recession in 80 years. The last thing we need is to put the governance of our country on hold while an election campaign is held. A spring election could delay our recovery 4-6 months. Even if our Conservative Government were re-elected, a new government has to be formed, a new Cabinet appointed and a new Speech from the Throne introduced. All this requires time and money. A spring election is a very, very bad idea! I would like to hear if you agree or disagree.
Member of Parliament
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