Ex MP Le­mieux to seek PC lea­der­ship

Le Reflet (The News) - - LA UNE - GREGG CHAM­BER­LAIN gregg.cham­ber­lain@eap.on.ca

Ste­phen Har­per has sat quiet in the back­benches on Par­lia­ment Hill since he led his par­ty to de­feat and lost his title as prime mi­nis­ter in the last fe­de­ral elec­tion. Meanw­hile the li­neup of conten­ders wan­ting to be the new lea­der of the Con­ser­va­tive Par­ty and for­mer MP Pierre Le­mieux’s name is now on that list.

Le­mieux, 53, held the Glen­gar­ry-Pres­cottRus­sell ri­ding for the Con­ser­va­tives for the du­ra­tion of the Har­per go­vern­ment, ta­king it away from the Li­be­rals in 2006, bea­ting Li­be­ral conten­der René Ber­thiaume by a nar­row mar­gin. For­mer Li­be­ral MP Don Bou­dria had held the ri­ding for 21 years be­fore an­noun­cing his re­ti­re­ment in 2005. Francis Drouin re­gai­ned the ri­ding for the Li­be­rals in the 2015 elec­tion.

Now Le­mieux is see­king sup­port as a can­di­date for the fe­de­ral Con­ser­va­tive lea­der­ship. He de­cla­red his can­di­da­cy in an email sent out Au­gust 22 to Con­ser­va­tive par­ty sup­por­ters in the Glen­gar­ry-Pres­cott-Rus­sell ri­ding. A co­py of the email was ob­tai­ned by na­tio­nal and re­gio­nal me­dia and in it Le­mieux out­lines his rea­sons for en­te­ring the lea­der­ship race.

“There are ma­ny rea­son why”, sta­ted Le­mieux, “but a key one is that I feel that this is an ex­tre­me­ly im­por­tant time in the Con­ser­va­tive Par­ty—both in terms of choo­sing a lea­der, but al­so in en­cou­ra­ging as ma­ny people as pos­sible to join the par­ty, to stand and be coun­ted, so that they can help shape the par­ty as it moves for­ward. It is a great time to bring new life in­to the par­ty!”

Le­mieux pre­sen­ted some of the key prin­ciples for his “so­cial con­ser­va­tive” cam­pai­gn plat­form, in­clu­ding his views on the role of the fa­mi­ly in Ca­na­dian so­cie­ty.

“Pierre is pro-life and be­lieves in the sanc­ti­ty of life from concep­tion through to na­tu­ral death,” states a back­groun­der do­cu­ment en­tit­led “Pierre Le­mieux Lea­der­ship”, in­clu­ded with the email. “Pierre sup­ports the tra­di­tio­nal de­fi­ni­tion of mar­riage as the union bet­ween one man and one wo­man. Pierre be­lieves that this lea­der­ship cam­pai­gn of­fers a tre­men­dous op­por­tu­ni­ty for people to get in­vol­ved and make their voices heard.”

The back­groun­der lists Le­mieux’s other prio­ri­ties as a lea­der­ship can­di­date, in­clu­ding free­dom of speech, re­li­gion and as­sem­bly, “a strong and heal­thy de­mo­cra­tic pro­cess”, and ha­ving MPs in of­fice with high ethi­cal stan­dards who “dis­play in­te­gri­ty, ho­nes­ty, and concern for the best in­ter­ests of Ca­na­dians.”

Le­mieux’s back­ground as a for­mer MP in­cludes se­ve­ral par­lia­men­ta­ry se­cre­ta­ry posts, in­clu­ding the one for the Mi­nis­try of Ve­te­rans Af­fairs. He is bi­lin­gual and ser­ved 20 years in the Ca­na­dian Ar­med Forces, re­ti­ring as a lieu­te­nant-co­lo­nel. A cer­ti­fied pro­fes­sio­nal en­gi­neer, in­clu­ding both a ba­che­lor’s de­gree in en­gi­nee­ring and a mas­ter’s de­gree in science, Le­mieux ma­na­ged his own en­gi­nee­ring consul­tant firm be­fore en­te­ring fe­de­ral po­li­tics.

Le­mieux’s an­noun­ce­ment makes him the se­venth de­cla­red can­di­date for the Con­ser­va­tive lea­der­ship. Other de­cla­red can­di­dates are: Maxime Ber­nier, Mi­chael Chong, To­ny Clement, Kel­lie Leitch, Dee­pak Obh­rai, and Brad Trost. Political pun­dits spe­cu­late that for­mer de­fence mi­nis­ter Peter Ma­cKay and other To­ries like Li­sa Raitt, An­drew Sax­ton, An­drew Scheer, and Erin O’Toole may al­so be consi­de­ring en­te­ring the cam­pai­gn.

The fe­de­ral Con­ser­va­tive lea­der­ship con­fe­rence takes place in May 2017.

—photo archives

For­mer MP Pierre Le­mieux may be one of the can­di­dates vying to be­come the new lea­der of the fe­de­ral Con­ser­va­tive par­ty.

Newspapers in French

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.