Prime Minister Stephen Harper spoke to hundreds of Conservative Party supporters at Quails’ Gate Estate winery Friday evening as part of a barbecue event for the B.C. Conservative Caucus.
The speech—which didn’t permit questions from the media—focused on the country’s current economic position, a balanced budget in 2015, job creation and a tougher criminal justice system.
Harper began by speaking about Canada’s first Prime Minister, Sir John A. Macdonald, who was also a former MP for Victoria.
“Sir John A. spoke to British Columbians about the things that matter: About jobs and prosperity, about Canada united and strong, about economic growth, not grow-ops,” said Harper, which the crowd of supporters responded to with applause.
The Prime Minister would take another jab at the Liberal Party later in his speech.
“The Liberal leader actually said a couple of weeks ago that he doesn’t have any economic policy. He says he won’t have any for at least a couple of years.
“Now I don’t count legalizing the marijuana trade as an economic policy.”
Harper spent about 15 minutes listing the Conservative Party’s accomplishments, focusing on Canada’s economic position compared to the rest of the world.
“Under our mandate, in a period of continued economic uncertainty and instability, where nations around the world are being crushed under bank and government debt, Canada has the most solid financial regime in the world.
“We have the fastest growth rate in the G7, and we have the lowest debt and we have the lowest national debt, by far.”
During the Prime Minister’s appearance, several protestors assembled on the side of Boucherie Road near the winery, holding signs that illustrated their opposition to genetically modified organisms (GMOs). One man repeated: “Kick Harper out.”
A PETA member wearing a seal costume also stood on the side of the road, holding a sign that read: Harper: Stop the seal slaughter.