SD&G, Ontario – CORNWALL, SDG – Eric Duncan remembers door-knocking throughout North Dundas when he was 18-years-old and running for municipal councillor. A little over a decade later, he is putting his name forward in hopes of running in the 2019 Federal Election, ready to revisit his community door-to-door.
“With Guy’s announcement on Saturday that he’s not going to run in the Federal Election this fall, I’m going to put my name forward to seek the Conservative nomination in our riding of SDG,” explained Duncan in an exclusive interview with Seaway News. “If all goes well, hopefully I will be on the ballot this fall.”
Duncan said that should he have the honour of representing our region, he understands there will be high expectations for him to match Lauzon’s level of customer service and constant presence at community events.
“There’s big shoes to fill with Guy, I know that, but I’m ready for the challenge,” said Duncan. “Support so far has been great.”
Duncan’s passion for politics speaks through his tireless experience in the field since the age of 18. Right out of high school, Duncan attended Carlton University where he received a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science. While receiving his education, he acted as a municipal councillor in North Dundas for four years. In 2010 at the ripe age of 22, Duncan was elected Mayor in the municipality. In 2014 he acclaimed the title of Mayor for another four years.
Additional to his 12 years on council, Duncan was elected Warden of the United Counties in 2014, making him the youngest Warden in 168 years. Duncan has also chaired the Eastern Ontario Warden’s Caucus. He has worked with MP Guy Lauzon for nine years and was a campaign manager three times for both MP Guy Lauzon and MPP Jim McDonell. Duncan also has private sector experience having worked at his family’s trucking business in South Mountain.
“I have been interested in public life and public policy for as long as I can remember,” said Duncan. “I believe I have the right mix of experience. My message to everyone is I’m ready to hit the ground running on day one.”
Duncan believes that Carbon Tax will be a major point of discussion at a national and local level during the upcoming federal campaigns. He is prepared to prioritize and discuss supply management, supporting culture in the United Counties and knowing infrastructure needs. He hopes to act as a connector for the region, representing in Ottawa and getting tax dollars back to the right places in the community.
“I want people to know that they can go to their MP’s office and get help with any federal issues,” he said.
Duncan is excited to take part in a variety of community events pertaining to the nomination and election. Since releasing duties as Mayor in Dec. 2018, he has had time to reenergize and channel his efforts towards receiving a nomination.
“I love campaigns in the sense of getting out to see people. I tell people it’s kind of ironic…I hate politics. I hate pettiness, attacks, all the negative things that (could) go with it, but I love public policy and my time in the municipal government…if we have a problem, we have to try and find solutions,” he said.