Patrick Brown facing new PC nomination trouble in city
Nick Lauwers is contemplating his political future.
Lauwers and Dan Sadler, both seeking the Flamborough-Glanbrook provincial Progressive Conservative riding nomination, say they were recently told by party officials that leader Patrick Brown would not sign their nomination papers if either wins the contest.
Local Tory officials have said the reason for the delay in holding a nomination meeting is that Brown and other party representatives are still trying to persuade Ward 7 Coun. Donna Skelly to run for the Tories in Flamborough-Glanbrook.
Lauwers said in an email that the party will not hold a nomination meeting “but rather an appointment.”
He said after a year of “hard work” selling “thousands” of memberships, “to say this is disappointing and devastating is an understatement.”
Skelly did not reply to a request for comment. She previously told the Hamilton Mountain News that she was not seeking the provincial PC nomination in Flamborough-Glanbrook. The former TV reporter ran unsuccessfully for the PCs in 2011 and 2014 against Liberal MPP Ted McMeekin in Ancaster-Dundas-Flamborough Westdale.
Lauwers, a Flamborough resident, said he is now “thinking about what to do next and where to go from here.”
In May, another candidate, Albert Marshall, dropped out of the race for the Flamborough-Glanbrook nomination after he said he was told the party was looking at appointing a candidate. At the time of Marshall, Lauwers and Sadler said they would continue to seek the nomination.
Rick Dykstra, president of the Ontario Progressive Conservative Party, stated at the time the party would have a nomination date for the ridings of Flamborough-Glanbrook, Hamilton Mountain, Hamilton Centre and Hamilton EastStoney Creek in the fall.
Neither Dykstra nor any other party officials responded to requests for comment for this story.
Brown and Skelly in early July participated in a roundtable discussion about jobs with a variety of local individuals in Hamilton. Media was not invited, but Brown tweeted about the event, thanking Skelly for participating.
The Liberals will be acclaiming Ward 15 Coun. Judi Partridge as its candidate for Flamborough-Glanbrook at the Dundas Town Hall on Aug. 14.
This is the latest in a number of nomination controversies the Tories have had to face as they seek to unseat the Liberals in next June’s election.
Hamilton West-Ancaster-Dundas candidate Vikram Singh is taking the party to court seeking to have the May 7 nomination results overturned. His next court date is Aug. 8. Candidate Jeff Peller has also appealed the results and subsequently filed for a judicial review. After a rowdy nomination meeting in Ancaster, Ben Levitt was declared the winner on the third ballot.
The party has also had nomination troubles in Ottawa West-Nepean and activists in the riding of Newmarket-Aurora have complained about irregularities.
Brown retained the services of private-sector auditors PWC to ensure the integrity of the party’s future nomination meetings.