Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Yay! Representation!

The first time I voted for the winning candidate in my federal riding was in 1993. I was living in Moose Jaw, going to Aldersgate College, and voted Reform for Allan Kerpan. That was the first time I voted. I followed that up with a vote for Roy Bailey in the next election.

Before the next election, I moved to Ottawa and lived Ottawa Centre, which in its 14 elections had elected a Conservative candidate a total of one time, and that only in a by-election after a popular incumbent retired in 1978. Seven months later that Tory incumbent was defeated by the Liberal candidate by a mere 1,030 votes (a 5.5% point margin).

So this small-town Saskatchewan boy moved into one of the most left-leaning ridings in Canada, and in futility voted for the Canadian Alliance candidate, David Brown. I volunteered with his campaign, did phone polling, knocked on doors, and when he finally hung his head in defeat, I swiped one of his election signs for posterity's sake.

Then I moved to St. Boniface in Winnipeg, and was somewhat disheartened to discover I had entered another haven of the Left. Raymond Simard had inherited the riding from Ron Duhamel, who had been sent to the Senate, and Ken Cooper unsuccessfully opposed him in the last two elections. The last election, though, was a close contest - closer than Simard enjoyed, I'm sure:

SIMARD, Raymond parliamentarian 17,989 Lib
COOPER, Ken manager 11,956 C

SIMARD, Raymond parliamentarian 16,417 Lib
COOPER, Ken manager 14,893 C

I still have Ken Cooper's lawn sign too.

Thankfully, tonight the Conservatives have slain the Liberal giant here, via the person of Shelly Glover.

So for the first time in nearly ten years, the party for which I voted has taken power in my riding.

I'm so keeping that lawn sign.

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