Let me pose a blunt question. Are you tired of hearing about adscam and the myriad of other scandals plaguing the federal Liberals? Are Canada?s opposition parties, are MPs, is the media, am I, being too negative or flogging a dead horse? Is it time to turn to something new?
I fully expect that some readers will readily answer ?yes? to that question. Point taken. On the other hand, many Prince George-Peace River residents tell me they?re unbelievably upset about the colossal waste of hundreds of millions of their hard-earned tax dollars that had been entrusted to the Liberals. They want me to help find out exactly what happened, how it happened and they want to ensure it won?t happen again.
My primary responsibility as your Member of Parliament is to represent your personal, local, regional and national interests and concerns in Ottawa. As a member of Canada?s Official Opposition I have two roles. First, point out deficiencies in the federal government?s policies and legislation and hold them accountable (someone has to). Second, tell Canadians what I and the Conservative Party of Canada can offer instead.
It?s a difficult balance to strike, but it?s a challenge I welcome as part of the privilege of being your MP. So, lest I be accused of being too negative, let me tell you about one of the more positive stories coming out of Ottawa: Stephen Harper.
Mr. Harper dove right into his duties as leader of the Official Opposition after Conservative Party members firmly endorsed him as leader. In Ottawa, where Parliament Hill is local news, the performance of political leaders is put under a microscope by a tough audience of Parliamentary reporters, columnists and observers.
What?s earning rave reviews for Mr. Harper is that he?s proving himself a legitimate and attractive alternative to Paul Martin. Where the new Prime Minister has only succeeded in widening the rifts within the Liberal party, Stephen Harper is being applauded for uniting the Conservative Party post-leadership race when many thought it virtually impossible.
And where Canadians everywhere were hugely disappointed by Paul Martin?s non-budget and its glaring lack of vision: ?Let?s admit we?ve been had by Paul Martin? (Ottawa Citizen, March 25th) versus ?It?s the Conservative leader?s IQ, judgment, decency and learning that will make him a fine Prime Minister ? It?s his monochrome, unthreatening, Canadian sobriety that makes him electable.?(Ottawa Citizen, March 29th).
And finally, ?Stephen Harper has only been on the job for a week. But so far we like what we see.? (Ottawa Sun, March 29th)
Couldn?t have said it better myself.
Leading up to, and during the upcoming election campaign, I?ll continue to speak out about the waste of your tax dollars by the Liberals, but I will also tell you what the Conservative Party is offering ? a strong and united political alternative encouraging renewed hope for our country?s future.
I believe you expect more for your tax investment, and I believe you should demand better accountability from the federal government.