Tucked in a booth at the Midtown Gastro Hub in Deer Park on Sept. 6, Toronto-St. Paul’s MP Carolyn Bennett admitted this federal election is going to be a tough one.
She is enthused that Canadians, though not immunized to the politics of division, have been more welcoming to refugees.
And it’s her enthusiasm that led her to seek another nomination to run in the 2019 Federal Election.
That includes her own riding, where she will be seeking election for the eighth time in her career. It’s an honour, she says, as St. Paul’s has such a variety of residents who aren’t afraid to engage in political conversations.
“We’re very proud of that diversity,” she added, pointing to Albert Wiggan, owner of Albert’s Real Jamaican Foods. Anyone who is from the riding knows he likes to stoke the fires of political discourse.
There’s reflection in her voice, as she admitted that 21 years ago, she started her pursuit for a seat in Ottawa.
“My mom and dad were sitting over there. It was their wedding anniversary,” Bennett said. “They’re gone, but you have such fond memories of the riding.”
On hand were many political figures, both past and present: former Ontario Premier Bob Rae, current MPs Rob Oliphant and Marco Mendocino, Liberal Party of Canada president Suzanne Cowan, and local councillor Josh Matlow.
Riding association president William Watson, introduced speakers, and Rae described his colleague Bennett as having tremendous poise, “which is not always easy to maintain in politics today”.
Many kind words were shared and the tone of the nomination event turned to the more sobering aspect of the election.
Cowan acknowledged it’s going to be a tough year ahead. With the election expected for October 2019, Bennett will be busy for over a year.
“The next election is vitally important,” Bennett told the crowd gathered. “The next election is going to be tough.”
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