The Brandon-Souris Liberal nomination meeting has been set for Oct. 9, and whoever gets the nod will have an early opportunity with the federal party leader.
Gerry Dyck, president of the Brandon-Souris Federal Liberal Association, said the time and location of the meeting is yet to be determined. However, he did confirm that the following day Justin Trudeau will be back in the Wheat City.
Dyck said welcoming Trudeau back to Brandon will only help the party’s chances in Brandon-Souris.
"Depending on where he goes and the people he’s able to talk to and see, each trip, my estimate … 500 to 1,000 more votes for the Liberal party," Dyck said.
Trudeau made a stop just last week in Brandon, where he hosted a meet-and-greet, visited Assiniboine Community College and spoke at Brandon University.
Rolf Dinsdale was given the green light to run as a candidate last week, while Killarney-Turtle Mountain Mayor Rick Pauls is waiting for confirmation. Pauls submitted his nomination application Tuesday morning at the Liberal Party of Canada office in Winnipeg.
"I expect it to be coming in … but we have to wait for the green light to come on," Dyck said.
Pauls said as long as all the paperwork was filled out correctly, he should be the second name on the nomination list.
"Now it’s in the people’s hands. I did everything that I could do, we ended up getting a bunch of memberships," he said. "Then we’ll see — if the Liberal delegates decide that they want a vocal local politician to represent them in Ottawa, then hopefully they’ll select me in the nomination process."
Pauls, a former card-carrying Conservative, decided to throw his hat in the ring as a Liberal candidate following the controversy surrounding the rejected applications of Chris Kennedy and Len Isleifson. Arthur-Virden MLA Larry Maguire is the acclaimed Conservative candidate.
Meanwhile, Dinsdale recently was having second thoughts about running due to the byelection taking on an "unusually excessive nasty tone."
He told the Brandon Sun he’s received threatening anonymous emails, as well as verbal attacks towards him and his family.
"This has been a rough election, and the writ hasn’t dropped and I’m not even a candidate yet," he said. "Certainly anyone would be a little bit put off by this, especially as we’re still in early stages."
On Tuesday, Dinsdale confirmed he’s still in the race.
"All this has done is … strengthen my resolve, and make it clear that you have to both stand up to bullies, and continue on with the core message, which is politics needs to change," he said.
"What I want to do is return politics in Brandon-Souris to a commitment to service in Brandon-Souris, and a commitment to providing the region with a strong voice in Ottawa … Obviously things have to change because it’s clear that the government that we have today has set the tone and the tone is lower than it’s ever been."
Dinsdale said his first campaign promise, should he be the successful candidate, is that he’ll "serve the full term."
"It needs to be said that we had Merv Tweed step down halfway through his term so that Maguire could step down halfway through his term," he said.
Dinsdale is the youngest son of Walter Dinsdale — the Brandon-Souris Progressive Conservative MP from 1951 to 1982.
George Dinsdale, Rolf’s grandfather, served six years as an alderman before being elected as Brandon’s mayor in 1920-21. George served as a Conservative MLA from 1932 until his death in 1943.
"I want to stand on my own merits and I’m a different person and it’s a different age, but the things that my family has represented are a commitment to service, compassion, a government that cares," he said.
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition October 2, 2013