If you are just waking up from a long sleep
If you are just waking up from a very long sleep you will have missed a couple of things: Canada’s (and Ontario’s) 147th Birthday Celebrations; An Ontario Election; The LA Kings winning their second Stanley Cup Championship and the Ontario PC Party looking for a new Leader.
Yes, Canada’s 147th was amazing and the LA Kings deserved to win the Stanley Cup again, they played better than the NY Rangers in the final.
As for the other two items, the outcomes where not what I wanted to see, but it is the reality of what happened on June 12th in Ontario – Ontarians wanted change – but it had to be change they could trust, voters feared our message. But the 1st determined the action of the second. I am disappointed the Ontario PC Party did not form the government and it sad to see a Leader that was dedicated to his Party and its cause step down, though there was no other action that Tim Hudak could have taken.
In Ottawa Centre, we did not win, but a dramatic shift has occurred in the riding. The demographics are changing. For most of the night we watched as we sat second to Yasir Naqvi who literally walked away with his victory, and I congratulated him on his win. That the Ontario PC Party could finish second to the Liberals shows that Ottawa Centre is moving to the centre and the left is slowly being let go by the voters. It is not a strange phenomenon for this to happen. In the 2011 Federal Election Damian Konstantinakos led the Conservative Party of Canada ahead of the Liberal candidate to finish second to uber popular Paul Dewar. Provincially it almost happened. For the second straight Provincial Election, the NDP saw their vote count drop, the result the PC’s had last month in Ottawa Centre show that come 2018 the PC’s will be the party that will fight Yasir for the seat in Queen’s Park. I told my supporters on Election Night, we jumped some big hurdles to achieve the results we did. Compared to 2011 results, Ottawa Centre was one of two ridings in Eastern Ontario to increase the vote total. We had a moral victory – we celebrated our gains like we had won – the team deserved it!
So now we move forward, onward and upward, whatever your phrase, it’s time to move on.
For me forward does not mean seeking a seat on City Council, but to work for the next weeks, months and years before the next Provincial Election to build the PC Party to be ready to govern and lead Ontario again. The PC Party is a Progressive Conservative Party, and that is my political home. I am a progressive – but that does not make me a Liberal or belong to the NDP, I am Progressive Conservative and there is a place for a progressive conservative government in Ontario. Ontario CAN have a government that will be resolute in fiscal responsibility and also be protective of our important social programs that made Ontario the province of choice for both Canadian born citizens and New Canadians.
I am going to be lending my support to the Party Caucus and the Party Executive to rebuild and strengthen our brand with the voters of not only Ottawa Centre, but in Greater Ottawa and Ontario. We will have to look for a Leader to take us in the next election and I look forward to hearing the ideas that potential Leadership Candidates will bring to the party membership.
I have my own ideas on what type of Leader I’d like to see and what direction I would like to see the Party head. One idea includes bringing conservative Greens (and I know you are out there) back into the PC Tent – let's have their ideas to create new Green Energy initiatives, only this time a new PC Party can ensure they are affordable and fiscally sensible to implement. I will be sharing more of my ideas as the Party Executive decides on a date and location for the Leadership convention.
I invite you to share your ideas by commenting to this post or any post on my blog. You can also email me directly at email@example.com.
So as we move forward, I am really excited by the opportunities that are available for us to grab hold of as a Party and locally with the Ottawa Centre PC Riding Association.