Uuestrie Hosts Can­di­dates’ De­bate In Comp­ton-Stanstead Rid­ing

Stanstead Journal - - NEWS BRIEFS - An­dré Gaulin

The Uni­tar­ian Univer­sal­ist Church in North Hat­ley (UUEstrie) has or­ga­nized, for the third time, a de­bate among the can­di­dates for Mem­ber of Par­lia­ment for the Comp­ton-Stanstead rid­ing. The event is now planned for Thurs­day, and not Wed­nes­day as pre­vi­ously an­nounced, April 14, at 7:30 p.m. at 201 Main St., North Hat­ley. It is open to the pub­lic.

The or­ga­niz­ers in­vited all five can­di­dates in the rid­ing to par­tic­i­pate. San­drine Gres­sard Bélanger (Con­ser­va­tive Party), France Bon­sant, MP (Bloc Québé­cois), Gary Cald­well (Green Party), and Wil­liam Hogg (Lib­eral Party) have agreed to take part. As of this date, the can­di­date for the New Demo­cratic Party (NDP), Jean Rousseau, has not yet con­firmed his par­tic­i­pa­tion.

The de­bate is to fol­low the same for­mat as the pre­vi­ous can­di­dates’ de­bates. Af­ter short open­ing state­ments, each can­di­date will be asked to re­spond to a few pre­pared ques­tions. A half-hour pe­riod is then al­lo­cated to ques­tions from the au­di­ence, and fi­nally, each can­di­date will be in­vited to give a clos­ing state­ment.

Ac­cord­ing to Me. Jaime Dun­ton, mod­er­a­tor of the de­bate, ques­tions are wel­come in both English and French. Dun­ton is a for­mer pres­i­dent of UUEstrie and a for­mer mayor of Hat­ley.

“We have or­ga­nized this de­bate in or­der to en­hance the qual­ity of the demo­cratic process,” said Keith Bax­ter, pres­i­dent of UUEstrie. “This is an op­por­tu­nity for can­di­dates to in­ter­act with com­mu­nity mem­bers in per­son, and for lo­cal peo­ple to ask them ques­tions di­rectly.”

The Univer­sal­ist Church is a spir­i­tual com­mu­nity with a long lib­eral tra­di­tion dat­ing from the 1800s. It is a mem­ber of the Cana­dian Uni­tar­ian Coun­cil.

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