Ed Holder gets real — and I like it.

PMO PIc: Harper and Holder

There are 308 MPs in the House of Commons. I like a lot of them. On all sides. Most are “good people”.  The common denominator among the ones I like a lot are those that are — and Andrew Potter forgive me for using the term — authentic. They are comfortable in their own skin. They’re interested in other human beings for the simple reason that they find other human beings interesting — not  simply because there’s a chance those other human beings might vote for them or say something nice about them.

Ed Holder, the London West MP, (pictured above in 2011 with PM Harper at the Tim Horton’s Brier — and yes, this pic, was taken by a PMO photographer)  is one of those I like a lot for those reasons and here’s the latest evidence — the latest edition of the newsletter he sends to those who have signed up to receive it on his Web site in which he talks about moving from backbencher to Minister of State for Science and Technology. It’s the “real” Ed Holder talking here folks and I quite like it:

Last week I was asked by Prime Minister Stephen Harper to serve as Minister of State (Science and Technology). It was one week ago this morning that I arrived at Rideau Hall where I was sworn in as a member of the Privy Council and as Minister of State. I thought you might not mind if I shared some of that experience with you. Both the Governor General and the Prime Minister were present as I swore my Oath of Allegiance. I found the whole experience profoundly moving. Although somewhat surreal, Rideau Hall, with its lovely grounds and setting reflects the history of Canada. His Excellency, Governor General David Johnston has an exceptional ability to make you feel like you have been friends forever – it is a gift. The Prime Minister’s personal comments to me were incredibly generous and supportive. I was pleased that both the Hon. Joe Oliver and the Hon. Greg Rickford were also sworn in to their new responsibilities with me. Greg was my predecessor in this role and both he and his predecessor, the Hon. Gary Goodyear served with distinction. They laid the groundwork which will allow me to move into my duties quickly. Following the swearing-in, I went to my Parliament Hill office to thank my staff for their continued commitment and spoke on the phone to my London staff to say thanks for their unwavering support of the people I am elected to serve.

After my visit to my Hill office I went to the Minister’s office, just a couple of blocks away. I met my ministerial staff and I must say how impressed I am, even in early days. They are talented, bright people who have already demonstrated to me exceptional dedication in their service to Canada. In a future issue I will highlight my role as a Minister in hopes that you will find it of interest. Along with my Hill and Constituency staff, my offices will work for my constituents and all of Canada with professionalism and continued high standards of service. That is my promise. I pledge my best efforts as your elected Member of Parliament. It is my intention to bring honour to my new responsibilities and never forget that I have a commitment to London in addition to my ministerial responsibilities.

My amazing wife, Judite who will carry the brunt of additional absences is my rock and I could not do this without her heart – how could I ask for more…and my beautiful family, Claudia and Cedo, and my granddaughters, Maia and Katia – they are the loves of my life. This is personal, but that’s what politics should be, personal – it is about family, about service and acting with sincerity; doing the right thing for a greater good. Those who know me will also appreciate that I also have to mention my Cape Breton mother, my role model and standard bearer for integrity and honour – those are the principles on which I stand and which I serve.

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