Lakeland MP Comments on Conservative Caucus Leadership Vote
February 3, 2022
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
“I am delighted to congratulate the Hon. Candice Bergen on her election as Interim Leader of the federal Conservative caucus. She will be a capable and steady champion who will unite our caucus and ensure we fulfill our obligations as the principled and assertive Official Opposition that Canadians expect and deserve, as our party embarks on a necessary opportunity to select a new leader. I know there will be many competent and credible candidates for leadership, and I look forward to working alongside grassroots party members, which I have been for nearly thirty years, as we engage in the leadership and policy processes in our democratic and member-driven party.
“The need for a strong, united, principled, and genuine Conservative party in Canada has never been more important for Lakeland and for all of Canada. I believe the livelihoods of the people I represent, and the long-term unity of our country depends on it. I know confidence in our party has been shaken among our members, volunteers, and core voters – and I know it was because of words, actions, and positions taken during the past year and a half. I have sought to always represent my riding above all else, internally and externally, privately and publicly – to oppose harmful policies and decisions, no matter who proposes it; to speak truth to power and to hold ourselves to the same standards we expect of our opponents. I have done so. In Lakeland, I hope the combination of my own track record and the opportunities that now lie ahead will re-invigorate and re-engage both people who have continued to give me their vote of confidence, and people who did previously but could no longer do so, for reasons and principles I understand.
“Conservatives must come together for our common values, which I believe are the common values of Canadians, like: freedom, equality, limited government, personal and fiscal responsibility, democracy, justice, personal and national sovereignty, and decentralization. We should focus on what unites us, not highlight what divides us, and value all Conservatives of all backgrounds in every part of the country. We must be a party that is clear, consistent, confident, optimistic, trustworthy, honourable, and principled; we should both oppose government at every instance of bad policy and bad sense, and propose Conservative solutions to modern challenges. We should do what we say. We should consider our duties to Canadians above all else.
Canada’s Conservatives have been most successful when we have remained true to our core principles and when we have remained steadfast in our commitment to represent the views and ideas of our constituents. As a Member of Parliament, I want to know that I can represent the values and priorities of my constituents internally and externally, that I can always have my say even if I don’t always get my way for them, in a respectful way that honours our team but that never makes me choose between Lakeland and my leader, or that results in reprisals and pressure. I will always choose Lakeland.
“Since it is true that united we stand and divided we fall, the reality is that many Members of Parliament are risk averse and must balance many competing interests – sometimes to the frustration of their voters. MPs work directly with each other on a daily basis and in intense situations. When MPs take an extraordinary action, as happened yesterday, people can trust it has been done for grave reasons. I look forward to the months ahead, and I am confident that our next leader will unite our party, unite Canada, and help us to form Canada’s next Conservative government.”