With election season in full swing, debates for member of Parliament candidates continue on YourTV Niagara.
On Sept. 10, candidates for the Niagara Falls riding went head to head. The incumbent Tony Baldinelli of the Conservative party went up against Melanie Holm of the Green party, Andrea Kaiser of the Liberal party and Brian Barker of the New Democratic Party (NDP).
Peter Taras of the People’s Party of Canada (PPC) was not in attendance, but presented a video at the end of the debate.
Here are five standout quotes from the debate.
Tony Baldinelli on the Conservative party’s stance on mandatory vaccines for federal employees:
“Vaccines are a safe and effective tool to help stop the spread of COVID-19, and we encourage everyone who is able to take one. But this government has done an incredibly poor job of making sure that rapid-testing capabilities are available in this country,” he said. “With regards to federal public servants, our position is exactly what the federal government’s position is: for those not vaccinated, they will have to pass a daily rapid test.”
Melanie Holm on electric vehicles and zero-emissions targets:
“Absolutely, the future is in electric vehicles. We’d like to see everybody driving electric vehicles in less than 10 years; that would be ideal. Net zero? We would like to be net zero prior to 2050, and by 2050, we would like to be net negative, so we want to start repairing the damage that we have done. It sounds like it may be a big task if you listen to the other parties, but we’re prepared to do the work and make the sacrifices we need to make to get there.”
Andrea Kaiser on the Liberal party’s stance on mandatory vaccines for federal employees:
“We are in favour of mandatory vaccines,” Kaiser said. “COVID tests are simply not good enough. If you test positive for COVID-19, it really is too late. And when I look back at the last 18 months, and I see what the health-care workers have been doing, the numerous hours, the risk they’ve been putting themselves at over the last almost two years, we need to take responsibility for those workers and for other people in the health-care system that need surgeries that are backlogged and that can’t get access to the care that they need.”
Brian Barker on other parties’ reactions to climate change:
“We have a party in the Liberals who buy pipelines, and then we have the Conservatives, at their own convention, caucus members deny that climate change is real,” Barker said. “We have to fight the climate crisis like the world’s on fire, because it literally is.”
Peter Taras on COVID-19 protocols across the country:
“We believe the mass testing of individuals in our society has only contributed to the mass hysteria and mass psychosis. Individuals’ health care is between them and their physician. It is no business of the government, it is no business of the person’s employer and it is no business of their neighbours. The PPC is here to fight for your freedom,” he said.
Moosa Imran, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Grimsby Lincoln News