WHEN THE LEADERSHIP RACE for the Conservative Party of Canada was first announced, I decided I would once again back Erin O’Toole … just as I had in the 2017 campaign.
Peter MacKay would be my second choice, and after that I would not rank any other candidates.
Over the past several weeks one name ended up looming bigger and bigger on the horizon, as it attracted my attention. That name was Dr. Leslyn Lewis.
She went from not being a ballot choice, to become 3rd on my ranked ballot … and then moved to the number two spot.
Today, I decided she is my choice, and the best option, to become the next leader of the Conservative Party of Canada.
She has articulated clear polices that I believe will resonate with grassroots Canadians across this country … and people across the spectrum of conservatives.
While others in the campaign have been quick to attack others for being the ‘wrong’ kind of conservative, Leslyn Lewis has instead opened the doors wide to all.
“Canadians are tired of old-style politics, which includes bickering
among Leadership candidates. Our grassroots know that we can
only win when we are united” ~~ Dr. Leslyn Lewis
She knows that unless conservatives can first get behind their leader — with full confidence — then there is no way the party can hope to get the backing of Canadian voters in the next election.
Some have said her socially conservative beliefs would hurt the party — that she doesn’t understand those with other societal beliefs. Does the following statement sound like that would be accurate?
“When I look at the struggles of some of my gay friends, being estranged from your parents from coming out — I wouldn’t think that they would choose that themselves,” she said. “I witnessed the pain that they’ve gone through.” ~~ Dr. Leslyn Lewis
Only someone with true compassion, and understanding, is able to speak as she did.
She is also someone whom I believe can be counted on … no matter what the odds … and here’s why.
Some people have said she shouldn’t be elected as the new leader because she couldn’t even win a seat for the party when she ran in the riding of Scarborough-Rouge Park during the 2015 election.
That is indeed correct, however, you should know the facts. First of all, Dr. Lewis stepped in as a last-minute replacement at the request of Stephen Harper and the party, to run in that riding. She became the candidate, with little time to make her mark on the constituency.
She also took over from the original Conservative candidate, who had been forced to resign due to scandal. Would you not agree that’s something which would have ‘dramatically reduced’ the chances of anyone, who took on that task, from winning?
Regardless, not only did Leslyn Lewis step up to become the party’s candidate, she actually increased the Conservative vote count from the previous 2011 election campaign, by over 700 votes.
That’s the kind of person I want leading our team … someone who will take on the fight, regardless of the odds against them!
It’s also been said that Conservatives need to have someone in parliament — ready to go after the Justin Trudeau Liberals — the day after they have been elected as the new party leader.
Let me remind each of you reading this, however, about the 18th Prime Minister of our country … Brian Mulroney.
Brian Mulroney wasn’t an elected MP either when he became leader of the Conservatives … he took his seat in Parliament after winning in a by-election.
He then went on to defeat the Liberal government of John Turner, in the following general election, and won the Conservatives two back-to-back majority governments.
So here’s my question … if he could do it, then why can’t another do the very same thing?
“I pledge to be a unifying voice of this nation. Not as a lone hero, but as a representation of all Canadians who believe Canada must remain a free nation, and the greatest example of a healthy democracy in the world” ~~ Dr. Leslyn Lewis
Leslyn Lewis is the candidate I believe is most resonating with the grassroots of the party; and that is why her campaign has been gaining momentum week after week.
Individual members — the grassroots of the party — will be what’s needed to win the next election. Social conservative, fiscal conservative, libertarian conservative, and every other kind of conservative.
Whatever your ethnic background, sexual background, or religious beliefs … whether immigrant or Canadian by birth … young or old, or everything in between … blue collar worker or white collar worker. It doesn’t matter; all are being welcomed into the big conservative tent Dr. Leslyn Lewis is creating.
She is the candidate that I believe can best lead Conservatives into the next election … and that is why my ballot has her as my number one choice!
I hope you’ll make her yours as well.
Alan Forseth is a Kamloops resident and former member of the Reform Party of Canada and the B.C. Reform Party, and a past and current member of the BC Conservative Party. His blog is My Thoughts on Politics and More.