SDSG – Ottawa-based lawyer David Anber says the biggest issue facing voters this election is personal liberty and freedoms. Anber, 40, is the People’s Party of Canada candidate in Stormont-Dundas-South Glengarry.
While he does not live in the riding, Anber said he believed he had a good grasp of the issues in the area as he has practiced law in the area for over a decade.
Anber recently joined the PPC, having quit the Conservative Party of Canada over that party’s stance on the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I’ve been very dismayed as to the direction that all the main parties have been going on things like civil liberties,” Anber explained. “The most recent example of this is the issue about vaccine passports. The idea that anyone other than the individual should be making the decision as to whether or not they take that vaccine – to me – is such a radical idea.”
Anber said that he thought that vaccines are great, and he was not against vaccines calling the high uptake in vaccinations “a good thing.”
“The PPC is the only party that seems to be taking a stand for basic civil liberties,” Anber said.
While Anber called the COVID-19 virus a serious health issue, he said that the pandemic is “sometimes just as dangerous to exaggerate. The seriousness of COVID at any given time it’s a fraction of a percent of people who have it in Canada.”
Returning to some form of normal – after pandemic related lock-downs devastated businesses and what he said are the lasting social effects on adults and children – is a priority for Anber.
“Say what you want, about the difference between the flu and COVID, with vaccine uptake what it is right now it’s hard to make the case that COVID is that much of a threat to us,” he said. “Okay. I know that some people want to make that case but the science doesn’t support that now.”
Anber has worked in the region as a lawyer for several years, and said he has been bringing himself up-to-date on some of the local issues.
“I don’t profess to be an expert on everything, and I think there’s a lot for me to learn still, but I have been doing my homework,” he said. “If a constituent were to bring one up that I haven’t thought of, I will certainly commit to looking at it through the lens of the principles that are important to me in the PPC right now.”
Speaking to party leadership, Anber said that most leaders have grand ideas but when challenged, change their tune to less controversial ideas.
“I like that about [PPC leader] Maxime Bernier that he sticks to principles and is articulate why he’s fixed on those principles,” he said.
When asked about the PPC party platform plank that would phase out Canada’s Supply Management system of quotas for dairy, chicken, and egg farms, Anber said that he had an open mind about fine-tuning his party’s plan.
“Not just going to a pure free market approach, but the starting point is that the free market should decide and then we go from there,” he said.
Looking forward to election day, Anber said he was going to campaign in the riding in and around his legal practice, and he planned to open his office in Cornwall in the coming week.
Election candidate profile note
The Leader contacted the SDSG Liberal and NDP riding associations to arrange interviews with their respective candidates. No reply was received from the Liberal campaign or candidate Denis Moquin before publication deadline.
The local NDP riding association referred our inquiry to the national NDP campaign.
After three days of emails, no contact information was provided, nor was any interview with NDP candidate Trevor Kennedy arranged.
Phillip Blancher, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Morrisburg Leader