A Vancouver city councillor with ties to the NDP and a former high-profile Green candidate have both endorsed Ujjal Dosanjh, the Liberal incumbent in Vancouver South.
Read this article at THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT
In interviews today with the Georgia Straight at the annual Vaisakhi parade in Dosanjh’s riding, Vision Vancouver councillor Raymond Louie and marijuana-legalization activist Jodie Emery both said they’re backing the former NDP premier in one of the most hotly contested races in the province.
In the 2008 election, Dosanjh defeated Conservative candidate Wai Young by 20 votes.
They are squaring off again in a rematch. The NDP is running social activist Meena Wong and the Green candidate is instructor and vocational counsellor Jean de Dieu Hakizimana.
“Ujjal has been a strong supporter of ethnic diversity and getting things done in our city,” Louie said.
He added that the Liberal MP has attended numerous open houses on many topics, and isn’t afraid to speak out on issues he believes in.
“I know he cares about our citizens,” Louie maintained.
The three-term Vancouver city councillor acknowledged that he’s a member of the NDP and he’s supporting Adrian Dix’s candidacy to become provincial leader.
Louie described himself as a “pragmatic person” and said that it’s important to look at the individual candidate in addition to the party label.
Coun. Raymond Louie explains why he’s backing Ujjal Dosanjh in Vancouver South.
Emery is a former provincial Green candidate in Vancouver-Fraserview, which is home to the Ross Street Temple.
She described Dosanjh as someone who “defends those who have been treated unjustly, such as my husband”.
Emery said she couldn’t bear the idea of running as a federal Green candidate in Vancouver South and spoiling his chances.
Dosanjh was one of three MPs (the others were Libby Davies and Scott Reid) who introduced petitions in Parliament opposing the extradition of Emery’s husband Marc Emery to the U.S. for selling marijuana seeds over the Internet.
“Mr. Dosanjh is a defender of liberties,” Emery said at the parade. “He believes in justice. He does what is right.”
She explained that her husband is in Oklahoma City awaiting a transfer to a medium-security prison in Mississippi. “That could put him in more risk with tougher people,” Emery noted.
Marc Emery was recently denied a transfer that would have allowed him to serve the rest of his sentence in Canada.
Meanwhile, the NDP candidate in Vancouver South, Wong, told the Straight at the parade that people are telling her on the doorsteps that they’re getting tired of the Liberals and the Conservatives.
“They just felt they are the same,” Wong said. “They are looking to the NDP as an alternative.”
Wong also said that the harmonized sales tax, which was supported by the Liberals and the Conservatives, has taken a toll in the riding, which is home to many small businesses.
“My campaign office is right on Main Street at 49th,” she stated. “That used to be a very vibrant commercial district. You can count how many empty stores are there.”
– Article from The Georgia Straight.