Four of five parties attend first debate

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By Nick Seebruch
Four of five parties attend first debate
Kelsey Catherine Schmitz takes her turn to speak at the first candidates debate in Stormont, Dundas and South Glengarry of the 2019 federal election (Nick Seebruch/ Seaway News).

CORNWALL, Ontario – The Cornwall and District Labour Council held a debate for federal candidates on Thursday, Oct. 3 at the Benson Centre.

The debate covered a variety of topics from the economy to climate change.

In her opening statement, Liberal Party candidate Heather Megill said it was time for a change in the riding of Stormont, Dundas and South Glengarry.

“For 15 years, this riding has been held by the Conservative Party of Canada and we have little to show for it,” she said.

Conservative Party candidate Eric Duncan was not at the debate, citing a conflict in scheduling, that did not keep some of the other parties from taking aim at him and incumbent Conservative MP Guy Lauzon.

“I don’t think we got an awful lot out of having him in government,” said Megill of Lauzon’s record.

“Whenever I’ve written to Mr. Lauzon’s office, I never get an answer, maybe that’s because I’m asking questions he doesn’t like,” said NDP candidate Kelsey Schmitz. “I don’t give a crap about good service, I care about good jobs.”

“The fact that Eric Duncan is not here is a sign of his entitlement and complacency,” said PPC candidate Sabile Trimm.

One question asked by Seaway News at the debate was what the role of an MP was in the modern House of Commons.

“We are looking for leaders who are committed to the public good,” said Green Party candidate Raheem Aman, explaining his party’s approach.

“NDP MPs have done a good job while not being in power at passing legislation,” said Schmitz.

The environment was a central topic at the debate. Aman explained that for the Greens, climate change was a number one concern, Trimm however, promised to out-green any Green while at the same time addressing sources of pollution.

Schmitz however advocate for a top down adjustment to society.

“It is about changing the way we live, it is about changing the way we work,” she said.

The next debate will be broadcast at 7 p.m. Wednesday on YourTV.

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