More controversy for the Ontario Progressive Conservative Party – this time, in Cambridge.
Questions are now being raised as a nomination meeting scheduled for next weekend has been abruptly cancelled, with no explanation.
Rob Leone is President of the Cambridge Riding Association for the Ontario PCs.
“We set a nomination date for March 24th – that was set at the beginning of January and was accepted by the Ontario PC Party. We were assured that the 24th date would proceed and that was going to happen – but of course yesterday, I received an email in the morning stating the meeting would in fact be cancelled.”
Leone says at this point, he honestly doesn’t know what this means for the Cambridge nomination.
“I don’t know what it really means, but I know what our members want – and that’s an opportunity to have a nomination meeting that allows us to select a candidate that will best represent Cambridge residents and the Cambridge members at Queen’s Park. We’re very interested in seeing a Cambridge nomination proceed, and we remain hopeful that the Party will sit down with us and talk about what’s going to happen.”
Leone says the cancellation was definitely the most disappointing for candidates.
“I think this was hardest on candidates that have been campaigning for almost a year now – and now they’re caught up in whatever this is. We have three approved candidates – Sunny Attwal, Bert Laranjo, and Tanya Granic Allen.”
Sunny Attwal has been campaigning for about a year now, and calls the cancellation extremely frustrating.
“We’re all just trying to find answers – we’ve got hundreds of local PC members wanting answers, and so do I. We received a brief e-mail and that was pretty much it – it just said the nomination was cancelled, it would be rescheduled, and we would be notified. Other than that, we’ve received no information.”
This isn’t the only hiccup in the race for the Cambridge nomination either, and not the first time a meeting has been postponed.
There was also a legal battle between a member of the Cambridge Riding Association and the Ontario PC Party – but that lawsuit was eventually dropped. Since then, there’s been word that a dentist living and practicing in Calgary would be the candidate parachuted into the riding, and rumours that Christine Elliott was considering being a contender.
Candidates are seeking the nomination to run against incumbent MPP Kathryn McGarry in this June’s election.