By Graeme McNaughton/The Oshawa Express
For the second time in a matter of weeks, NDP leader Tom Mulcair was in Oshawa. The big difference this time, however, is that now he is in the midst of a federal election.
The leader of the opposition in the most recent parliament was in town for the grand
opening of the campaign office of Oshawa NDP candidate Mary Fowler.
The King Street office was mobbed by approximately 150 people, including Oshawa MPP Jennifer French, regional councillors Nester Pidwerbecki and Dan Carter, and UOIT student union president Jesse Cullen.
Mulcair voiced his strong support for Fowler on the street in front of the office.
“Mary’s a tremendous candidate. She’s got great roots in the community…she’s someone who knows everything about the community through her work in teaching, she’s fluently bilingual, she’s going to bring a lot to the region and she’ll be a tremendous representative of the region in Ottawa,” he said during an impromptu press conference. “And I would dare say that that’s one of the fundamental differences between an NDP MP and the MPs from the other parties. An NDP MP goes to Ottawa to explain the needs of their ridings. The other parties send their MPs from Ottawa to say what Ottawa needs in the riding.”
The NDP came into the election ahead in the polls. According to a Forum Research survey published on Aug. 2, the day the election was called, they sat with the highest numbers at 39 per cent, followed by the Conservatives at 28, the Liberals at 25 and the Green Party at three.
Fowler says she’s heard similar things during her canvassing throughout the city.
“We’ve heard over and over at the doors that people here want change,” she said. “We have a really big volunteer group that are made up of so many people in this community, such a diverse array of people coming out and saying they want an NDP government.”