Monthly Archives: February 2008

Video From The First Toronto Centre Debate

Last night was the first public all candidates debate in the Toronto Centre March 17th by-election campaign. It was put on by the Bay Corridor Community Association and was very well attended. I’ll offer more comment and reaction later (and maybe some more video too), but for now, here are my opening and closing statements. (Oh, and that opening joke? You kinda had to be there.)

Greens crowding into Toronto Centre

Crossposted from

Today, Chris Tindal’s campaign office in Toronto Centre was home to volunteers from Barrie, Ottawa, Kitchener-Waterloo, St. Paul’s, Beaches–East York, Etobicoke–Lakeshore, and the Ryerson Greens. The momentum was palpable! We’re hearing great news back from across this diverse riding. People are ready for change, and excited about the progress the Greens have made since the last election. All of the volunteers who supported the campaign today plan to be back as soon as they can. If we are able to muster this kind of support moving forward, we are well on our way to achieving our goal!

Thanks to Jason, Jeff, Clare, Erich, Warren, Mary Ann, David, Denis, Scott, Lisa, Dave, Glen, Samuel, Cathy, Kathy, Matthew, Jeff, and all the other wonderful people who have gone door to door to support the election of Canada’s first Green MP!

There’s lots of room for more volunteers to work on the campaign, and for EDAs to send teams to “adopt” polls. It makes a great training opportunity for the general election.

If you or your team would like to get involved, give me a call on the Volunteer Hotline at 416-323-9255 or email today!

Bob Update

Further to my post yesterday, in which I question how my Liberal opponent could justify propping up this government any longer, two prominent Liberals (both bloggers, one a sitting MP) weigh in.

A BCer in Toronto writes, in part:

Umm, how do you propose we wait Bob? I mean, everything else you and the caucus nervous nellies are saying makes sense. I’d love to get those by-elections done first too, get some momentum from hopefully having Bob and some other new Liberal MPs in the house. I’d love to wait until the economy has worsened. I’d love to wait until the Liberals are at 100 per cent in the polls, and Stephane Dion is more popular than The Beatles.

There’s a few roadblacks in the way though, besides Stephane’s lack of musical ability. First one: the budget. The first votes are going to be in a few weeks, well before the byelections. What does Bob propose we do on the budget. Does he want us to vote in favour of what’s going to be a minimalist budget that does nothing to address the worsening economic situation, and prop-up this government that stands for everything we don’t? Or would Bob rather we prop-up this government by abstaining, and look the laughing-stocks again?

…So, while I like Bob’s theory, it’s the practice I have some issues with. If he has some brilliant plan for getting us past the budget vote without looking like complete tools, I’d love to hear it. Maybe the leaker forgot to tell Jane Taber that part.

Nervous nellies, buck up. Find your cojones. The election train is moving out of the station. Get on board or get out of the way. We cannot prop-up this government any more.

And from Garth Turner:

Much has been made this week of an election call. If you believe the media, Liberals reacted by forming a coherent and fierce battle group around the leader. Then fired inwards.

True enough, some, a few, of my caucus colleagues just love to talk about how they fear going to the voters. I should know the refrain by heart, since I’ve heard it from a half-dozen of them for an entire year. Lately the Lib Pacifist Movement has even become a little organized, and found a champion in a former leadership contender. Miraculously, his words in our inner-most sessions have ended up on the front page of the next day’s daily.

Well, for us poor farm boys from Halton, this is all a little hard to understand. Seems to us you’re in politics for reasons of principle and passion, not just for partisanship. You know why you’re here. If you believe Stephen Harper is screwing up Canada, then you fight the guy. You take up arms for overtaxed middle class minivan moms, for laid-off auto workers, for aboriginals, for the suffering environment, for income trust investors, for those in poverty and those who thought by electing this guy they’d get a leader who would keep his promises.

You fight for those who believed his pledge of 125,000 new child care spaces a year. That he would honour the Atlantic Accord. That he’d treat First Nations with respect. That he cared about the environment. That he’d never tax income trusts. That he’d bring a new spirit of openness and accountability to Ottawa. That he’d treat everyone with equality. That voters mattered, and he’d bring them change.