A Nanaimo woman is one of the first-ever candidates for the People’s Party of Canada.
PPC members in Nanaimo-Ladysmith chose Jennifer Clarke as the party’s potential byelection candidate at a meeting Saturday in the north end.
Laura-Lynn Tyler Thompson was chosen to represent the PPC in Burnaby South as the party seeks to be prepared for “the two upcoming B.C. byelections,” according to its Facebook page.
Clarke said she thinks a byelection in Nanaimo-Ladysmith will happen “fairly shortly” and said the People’s Party of Canada will have a strong presence in the campaign. She said PPC leader Maxime Bernier – who is expected to visit the riding as soon as this week – is an “amazing” speaker and person with a strong message and a lot of good leadership qualities.
“We’ve got people from all the parties realizing that they’re wanting something fresh and new, that has integrity, that is honest, that’s doing politics differently, that is listening to the people,” she said.
Clarke ran for school trustee in the October local government election, falling about 2,300 votes short, and then tried in November for the Conservative Party of Canada nomination.
“For the sake of getting [Prime Minister Justin Trudeau] out, I wanted to stay united as much as possible,” Clarke said. “But I realized that this is a much more positive platform, where [Bernier] is here for all Canadians.”
Clarke suggested she has a lot of freedom of speech to speak about the issues important to her built right into the party platform.
“I think that’s part of what Canada needs, is to have those freedoms back implemented with the Charter of Rights and Freedoms – the freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom of conscience, freedom of assembly, all the different freedoms – to be really promoted because I think at this point we’ve been losing ground in those areas,” she said.
Shannon Kewley, PPC provincial organizer who will manage the campaigns in both Burnaby South and Nanaimo-Ladysmith, said Clarke is a bright, knowledgeable candidate who already has community support.
Kewley said the People’s Party of Canada was able to set up 42 electoral district associations in nine weeks and said there are strong boards in place that are ready to go and are raising money.
“It is amazing. We’ve got so many people coming to us from all parties – from the NDP, from the Liberals, from the Conservatives – because their leaders and their platforms, they have nothing to offer, and especially in British Columbia,” Kewley said. “Maxime is just resonating with British Columbians with his common-sense approach.”
Clarke is holding a meet and greet today, Jan. 8, from 1:30-8 p.m. at Kiwanis Manor at 1201 Kiwanis Cres.
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