Grits on the rise in Western Manitoba?

By all accounts, the November, 2013 byelection in the southwestern Manitoba riding of Brandon-Souris should never have been as close as it was. And yet, there was a punk rocker who’d spent a good chunk of his life in Toronto leading late in some polls in a riding where the Conservatives had been absolutely dominant for decades. In the end, Conservative Larry Maguire won with 44.16% of the vote compared to Liberal Rolf Dinsdale’s 42.75%.

Was that an aberration?

Maybe not.  Continue reading Grits on the rise in Western Manitoba?

Final push in Brandon-Souris with letters to voters and front page political ads

False Front of Brandon SUn

In the federal riding of Brandon-Souris — and in three other federal ridings — voters will elect a new MP Monday. Brandon-Souris holds the promise of a big upset. It’s been Conservative or Progressive Conservative for pretty much forever with one exception. In the Kim Campbell wipeout election of 1993, the Progressive Conservative candidate at the time, Larry Maguire, lost to the Liberals. Well guess what? Maguire’s name is on the ballot again, this time as the Conservative candidate, and he could lose what should have been a sure thing to Liberal Rolf Dinsdale. Continue reading Final push in Brandon-Souris with letters to voters and front page political ads

The things politicians say to kids about drugs …

James O’Connor is a journalist, the managing editor of the Brandon Sun newspaper.  As you can see from the picture above, he was in the room when Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau visited a school earlier this week.

The kids were curious about Trudeau’s stand on pot. One of them asked him about it.  Continue reading The things politicians say to kids about drugs …

Byelections are a go for Nov. 25

The race is on in the federal ridings of Toronto-Centre, Provencher, Brandon-Souris and Bourassa.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper just announced that byelections to fill those four vacant seats will be held Nov 25.

Opening betting lines: Liberals are heavy favourites to hold Toronto-Centre and Bourassa. The Conservatives are heavy favourites to hold Provencher and Brandon-Souris.

We’ll have full coverage from now until e-day Monday-to-Friday at 6 PM ET on my program, Battleground on  Sun News Network.

A reader writes: Inky Mark on Merv Tweed and Stephen Harper

Inky Mark
Inky Mark on Parliament Hill in 2005 (REUTERS/Jim Young)

Inky Mark, first elected to the House of Commons in 1997 to represent Dauphin-Swan River in Manitoba, never did like Stephen Harper much and didn’t much care for the way the Reform Party he first joined morphed into the modern Conservative Party. He quit federal politics in 2010, after Harper had won his second minority.

This week, upon learning that Merv Tweed would resign his seat in Brandon-Souris — Tweed’s riding lies directly south of Mark’s old riding , Mark sends along this note:

Now that Merv Tweed has taken a plush job with Hudson Bay Rail, what will happen to the vacancy in Brandon Souris?
Will Stephen Harper appoint his replacement as he has done in Dauphin Swan River after I retired from Ottawa in 2010? Will the CPC members in Brandon Souris demand that an open democratic nomination process be followed? Hopefully the new MP won’t be just another rubber stamp for Harper.

Yours sincerely,

Inky Mark,
former Member of Parliament.