Party lead­ers re­veal favourites

Cape Breton Post - - Cape Breton/Province -

Po­lit­i­cal dif­fer­ences aside, Nova Sco­tia’s ma­jor party lead­ers can find com­mon ground on a few fronts.

But sharp dif­fer­ences in taste emerged else­where in a sur­vey of the lead­ers’ cul­tural, sports and other per­sonal pref­er­ences.

Tory leader Jamie Bail­lie said his favourite food was Thai cui­sine — “pad Thai, glass noo­dles, you name it.’’

Both Lib­eral Stephen McNeil and the NDP’s Gary Bur­rill kept it sim­ple, how­ever, when it came to their culi­nary favourites. The premier re­vealed that McDon­ald’s is his go-to meal, while Bur­rill said there’s noth­ing like a “good old­fash­ioned’’ ham­burger and fries.

Their re­sponses to a sur­vey by The Cana­dian Press ap­peared to line up with their po­lit­i­cal per­sonas, par­tic­u­larly when it came to their TV-view­ing habits.

McNeil said he re­laxes by watch­ing home ren­o­va­tion shows hosted by no-non­sense, bud­get-con­scious con­trac­tors like “Holmes on Homes’’ and “Leave it to Bryan.’’

Bail­lie, who has cam­paigned as a fam­ily man, said he watches fam­ily come­dies like “The Simp­sons” and “Mod­ern Fam­ily.”

McNeil and Bail­lie both said they have Net­flix and ba­sic ca­ble. Mean­while, Bur­rill has cut the ca­ble cord al­to­gether at home, but said he watches some TV news at the of­fice.

Bur­rill said he prefers the ra­dio to screen en­ter­tain­ment, of­ten turn­ing his dial to hear the base­ball play-by-play, es­pe­cially if it’s a Bos­ton Red Sox game.

“Base­ball is my sport!’’ the NDP leader said. “When my fam­ily lived in Bos­ton, I used to take my kids to the game a few times a week.’’

The other two lead­ers said they are Toronto Blue Jays fans.

None of the lead­ers’ hockey favourites are still play­ing this year: Bail­lie and Bur­rill are Toronto Maple Leafs fans, while McNeil is a Mon­treal Cana­di­ens man.

The can­di­date’s playlists var­ied widely — rang­ing from glam metal to Celtic reels.

Bail­lie showed a pen­chant for the up­beat chart top­pers of the 70s and 80s, in­clud­ing El­ton John, Kiss’s first live al­bum and “Love Shack’’ by the B-52’s.

McNeil mixed up his mu­sic picks be­tween the soft rock of the Ea­gles and Johnny Cash’s mourn­ful coun­try twang. He also high­lighted the lyrics of “Green Eyes’’ by Coldplay, say­ing the verse “You are rock upon which I stand’’ evokes memories of his mother.

“(She) was the rock for me and my 16 broth­ers and sis­ters af­ter my fa­ther died,’’ McNeil wrote.

Bur­rill’s mu­si­cal pref­er­ences were also driven by a fa­mil­ial con­nec­tion. He listed Hal­i­fax-based indie folk band Hills­burn as his favourite al­bum and mu­si­cal act, grant­ing that there may be some nepo­tism in­volved, given that two of the group’s mem­bers are his chil­dren.

Bur­rill also shared his predilec­tion for the fid­dle. He said the last al­bum he pur­chased was by fid­dling duo the Bb Sis­ters, and said there’s “no reel that a good fid­dler can drive much bet­ter’’ than Dan R. MacDon­ald’s ren­di­tion of “The Trip to Wind­sor.’’

Bur­rill said his favourite beach spot was the cob­ble and sand shore­line of Port Mait­land “be­cause it’s home.’’ McNeil said he en­joyed the rocky Hamp­ton Beach in An­napo­lis County, while Bail­lie favoured the sands of Dragline Beach on Cari­bou Is­land.

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