RIDING PROFILE: North Island Powell River riding expected to be a tight race


This is incumbent Rachel Blaney’s second campaign and she’s counting on her track record in Ottawa to get re-elected.

“I’m a voice you can trust,” she said in Comox Friday.

“You know I’m going to show up in your community. We have the third-largest riding in all of British Columbia and I’ve been in people’s communities, I’ve worked with them on issues that matter to them and I think that’s really important when you represent a riding that has often been forgotten. You need people who are going to be in the communities and advocate like heck in Ottawa.”

The Conservatives held this seat for many years under John Duncan, and now Port McNeill town councillor Shelley Downey is in a dead heat, it appears, to win it back from the NDP. She says she’s hearing that jobs and affordability are the most important issues with people.

“I can tell you that resource jobs matter in this riding and that’s a priority, that’s a priority for the Conservatives and that’s a priority that I’m hearing about on the streets,” said Downey. “And as your representative here in this riding, those are the things that I’m going to stand for.”

Liberal candidate Peter Schwarzhoff finished third in 2015 losing to the Conservative candidate by just 400 votes. He’s running again this year.

“The real reason I got into politics is I was an Environment Canada scientist and I was gagged by Stephen Harper,” said Schwarzhoff. “I had something to say about climate change, well now I’m determined to say it. If you’re serious about climate change, if you really want to do something and not go back you’ll vote for the only party that has the ability to put a progressive agenda in place.”

Green Party candidate Mark De Bruijn says he’s meeting a lot of undecided voters at the doorstep, who could tip the balance his way on election night.

“We meet so many undecided voters who are leaning green because they recognize there’s really no other party that has anything of real substance to offer into the situation that we’re facing because the other parties don’t really get it, they don’t recognize the severity of this climate emergency,” said De Bruijn.

Conversely, the People’s Party of Canada says there’s no climate emergency at all.

“This fear that’s being put into children and everybody that if we don’t do something radical like shutting down our whole economy based on oil and gas in the next few years, that the world’s going to end, well we don’t believe this,” said People’s Party of Canada candidate Brian Rundle.

Voters get their chance to say who they believe and trust the most on Monday.

For the full list of candidates announced for Vancouver Island, visit our page here. 

Dean StoltzDean Stoltz

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