I’ve heard from several local Conservatives who are upset about a recent event in Liverpool involving a federal cabinet minister.
The July 18 forum for seniors at Queens Place Emera Centre was not broadly communicated, they tell me. The event was organized through Liberal political channels rather than public ones, they say. It was crass, self-interested pre-election theatre, they claim.
I don’t disagree with them.
Deputy mayor Susan MacLeod appeared to play the role of fixer for Health Minister Ginette Petitpas Taylor and local MP Bernadette Jordan. The room was pretty full. People asked questions, but not too many. There were no angry malcontents to cause a ruckus.
Later, across town, there was the predictable photo opportunity with Petitpas Taylor and Jordan reading to children amid news the Canada Child Benefit was being indexed. The whole thing had a campaign feel to it, even though the federal election isn’t scheduled for another 15 months. (And if something feels like a campaign event, it usually is.)
But the Tories who complained to me about this are no different than the Liberals they were complaining about. They’re just as partisan, just as political, just as fond of their own kind. For evidence, look no further than the budding relationship between the local PC party, the Queens District RCMP and the Queens County senior safety program.
The Queens District RCMP detachment commander told council on Tuesday that Const. Rob James has retired and is now working as a constituency assistant for PC MLA Kim Masland. That was news to me, but didn’t come as a shock. After all, Masland’s campaign manager during last year’s election was also a retired Mountie.
Masland, of course, was Queens County’s senior safety coordinator before her election as MLA. And guess who replaced her in that job? That would be Carole Hipwell, the PC candidate of record in Lunenburg West from the very same 2017 election.
I should probably kick the local NDP in the shins a few times out of fairness and balance. But it’s impolite to speak ill of the dead, isn’t it?
Let’s just say the last thing I read about Queens-Shelburne New Democrats is their association was being suspended by Elections Nova Scotia for failing to file its annual financial reports.
Some say political parties are the standard-bearers of democracy. I say a pox on all of them, each and every one.