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Tuesday, 01 August 2017 23:59

Jagmeet Singh Out Ahead

By: BJ Siekierski and Kyle Duggan in Ottawa

Jagmeet Singh raised more money than the rest of the NDP leadership field combined in the second quarter of 2017.

According to fundraising data published by Elections Canada late Monday afternoon, the deputy leader of the Ontario NDP raked in $356,784 from 1,681 contributors for the period that ended June 30.

That was well above Charlie Angus, who finished second with $123,577 from 1,285.

Niki Ashton raised $70,156 from 1,006 contributors, while Guy Caron brought in $46,970 from 568.

Peter Julian, who dropped out of the race in June citing fundraising troubles, still raised $28,673 from 296 donors.

In a press release, Singh cited the fact that he only officially joined the race on May 15, 2017 and that he therefore raised the impressive amount in only 47 days.

“Jagmeet Singh, candidate in the federal NDP leadership race, has raised more in the first 47 days than Justin Trudeau or Andrew Scheer at the same point in their leadership campaigns,” the press release said.

It added that the median donation was $40 and that two-thirds of the donations received were under $100.

The Liberals took issue with the $40 median donation being portrayed as evidence of a grassroots groundswell, pointing out that 87 per cent of all their donations in the second quarter were under $100 and that the median donation was just $11.

They also disputed the comparison to Trudeau’s leadership fundraising. A party spokesperson told iPolitics that — though Trudeau announced his intention to run on October 2, 2012, the race wasn’t officially underway until November 14, when the party began providing administrative support to the candidates.

In the first 47 days from November 14, the spokesperson said, Trudeau raised over $700,000.

All the same, with the NDP’s fundraising hitting a seven-year low in the quarter, Singh’s success is indisputably good news for the party, which takes a 25 per cent cut of all donations to leadership campaigns.

“Singh’s fundraising numbers also revealed how his message is resonating with new supporters for the NDP. A cross reference of address, name, and postal code with Elections Canada donor records, demonstrate that roughly 75% of the donors to Singh’s campaign have never before given to Canada’s NDP,” the Singh release said.

Singh himself argued his fundraising numbers show the party can take on the Liberals and Conservatives in 2019.

“I am very proud of what our team was able to accomplish in our first six weeks of the campaign,” he said.


By arrangement with ipolitics.ca.

Published in Politics

by Kyle Duggan in Ottawa 

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne made a broad appeal for acceptance at a visit to an Ottawa mosque for Friday prayers last week.

Wynne stopped by the Ottawa Muslim Association’s mosque with Ottawa Centre MPP Yasir Naqvi, and addressed the violent Paris attacks two weeks ago, saying it is “now more important than ever” to show compassion towards others.

“It’s our responsibility as Canadians to make sure we guard against the fear and we resist blame that can lead to racism and to hatred. At these moments it’s extremely important we reinforce our Canadian values that are [inclusive] and based in compassion.”

“It’s our responsibility as Canadians to make sure we resist blame that can lead to racism and to hatred."

She said the Paris attacks were an act of terrorism not borne of religion “because religion has no place for hate.”

Wynne said she met Thursday night with the young Muslim woman from her own Toronto riding who was physically attacked and called a terrorist.

“I could feel the fear that is in that household because she was attacked outside her children's school. She was born in Toronto.”

“That kind of hatred is what we have to guard against at this moment in our history,” Wynne said.

Naqvi said the Premier’s visit to the mosque sends “a very strong message that we as Ontarians stand together.”

Defeat hatred with love

There were several other acts recently in the province, including one on a Peterborough mosque that was burnt down. That incident is being investigated as a potential hate crime.

“Only love is going to defeat hatred,” she said.

Naqvi said that in the face of acts of violence and hate, the Premier’s visit to the mosque sends “a very strong message that we as Ontarians stand together.”

On welcoming Syrian refugees, Wynne said “that humanitarian crisis calls on us to demonstrate who we are in the world.”

The province aims to resettle some 10,000 refugees by end of 2016.

Federal Cabinet Ministers said today they would announce details of the refugee plan on Tuesday.


Re-published in partnership with iPolitics.ca.

Published in Top Stories

by Kyle Duggan in Ottawa

The Conservatives have taken out ads in ethnic media suggesting Justin Trudeau would legalize brothels and make marijuana more accessible to children, and have been fundraising on the claims as well.

Oakville Conservative candidate Terence Young’s campaign sent out a lengthy e-mail on Oct. 6 titled “How might your neighbourhood change under the Liberals” which also contains a “donate now” link. It reads as follows:

“The Liberals want to legalize prostitution, voting against our progressive bill to help vulnerable women get out of prostitution, Bill C-36. That would mean brothels and madams in Oakville communities, protected by law.”

The logic behind the assertion seems to be that because Trudeau voted against Bill C-36 without proposing new legislation, the Liberals are in favour of legalizing prostitution.

“For most of us in Oakville, our home is our major asset for financial security in retirement. Having a marijuana store, a brothel or a drug injection site nearby could easily make our homes difficult to sell, and devalued.”

Young had also suggested the claims at a local all-candidates debate.

Bill C-36 was an anti-prostitution bill that had to be amended because of a Supreme Court ruling which struck down Canada’s existing prostitution laws last December. The logic behind the assertion seems to be that because Trudeau voted against Bill C-36 without proposing new legislation, the Liberals are in favour of legalizing prostitution.

Various B.C. media have reported that the Conservatives have taken out ads in Chinese and Punjabi-language newspapers in Richmond and Vancouver suggesting the same, including the pictured ad from Ming Pao.

Liberal candidate in Vancouver South, Harjit Sajjan, said he reacted with shock and disappointment at the ads.

Twitter posts also suggest similar ads have been airing on Punjabi television.

Shock, disappointment in ads

The Liberal candidate in Vancouver South, Harjit Sajjan, said he reacted with shock and disappointment at the ads, and that they smack of desperation “for a party to use graphic images like this in politics for the sake of votes.”

He also said the Conservative’s logic on the Liberal’s stance on Bill C-36 is misleading. “Just because you voted against legislation that was, by our assessment, not going to have the desired impact – to extrapolate to that extent, that’s a complete lack of leadership.”

Former Conservative MP Stockwell Day – campaigning with Conservative candidates in Vancouver Wednesday – defended the ads, and said there could be “all kinds of other business developments that will flow” from legal prostitution.

“When you articulate a policy, you should think through what could be the ramifications of that policy. Whether it’s Justin Trudeau saying he’s going to run deficits and we say that’s going to hurt the economy, or whether it’s Justin Trudeau saying [he] supports so-called safe injection sites around the country and [he] wants marijuana products to be more available, then you should realize people will draw conclusions on some of the results of that.”

Capitalizing on ethnic audiences

April Lindgren, a Ryerson University Journalism professor who led a study on ethnic media ads in the 2011 campaign, says the Conservatives have ramped up ethnic media advertising since the 2011 election, when their advertising tended to be more about the candidates rather than social values.

“Certainly, in terms of the newspapers it’s ramped up from the last elections. We didn’t see any specific topic-related ads,” she said.

“I think [the Conservatives] have a sense that there’s a social conservative element in some of the ethnic communities and that’s what they’re capitalizing on.”

“I think they have a sense that there’s a social conservative element in some of the ethnic communities and that’s what they’re capitalizing on,” she said, adding that it raises the question of whether they’re losing the battle on the economic messaging front.

When asked by reporters at a campaign stop earlier Wednesday about the ads, Conservative leader Stephen Harper said the “other guys” will claim it’s about fear but “all we’re trying to do is try attention to facts – facts they are actually not willing to talk about.”

The brothels assertion was floated by Conservative candidate Jason Kenney late in September at a news conference where he said Trudeau wants to force communities to accept brothels.

The Conservatives have taken on a tough-on-drugs stance in their messaging and as well have repeatedly tried to shut down Insite, a Vancouver-based safe injection site.


Published in partnership with iPolitics.ca.

Published in Politics

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