Proof that our election system works even in the face of snap elections - and yes, that was a broad swipe at the Fair Elections Act - the advanced polls of the 2014 Ontario Provincial Election open today. All good politicos will have surely received their voter identification card in the mail (and don't forget your identification), which will tell you were your main polling station on Election Day is located, and where advanced polls take place and when. If, however, you don't yet have your voter info card and/or are not on the voters list (which you can confirm at wemakevotingeasy.ca), find below the list of advanced poll locations as well as dates and times.
Saturday, May 31, 2014
Friday, May 30, 2014
This election cycle (for me) kicked off with some Twitter talk - who's on it, who's not on it - so it seems apropos to revisit the topic of social media and its impact on the election. Things went to a whole other level yesterday when the CBC posted a story about some Americans being inundated with tweets because they have the good, or unfortunate, fate to share the names of the two frontrunners for the job of Ontario's Premier: Kathleen Wynn and Tim Hudak.
Thursday, May 29, 2014
Hopefully, this doesn't come across as a partisan post, but a good idea is a good idea, and if we don't foster good ideas and acknowledge them when they're made then just what the heck are elections all about?
NDP candidate James Gordon is pushing for Guelph Tranist to be made free to take on Election Day in order to help lubricate the democratic process (as it were). Although it's not the whole problem, perhaps beginning to change our approach to how Election Day works will help get more people out to vote. Ideas like multiple days of voting, holding Election Day on the weekend, or making Election Day a stat holiday have all come up in conversation as ways to making getting out the vote easier. Would they work? Would making the bus free on Election Day to get people to the polls? I'm not sure, but it can't hurt to start somewhere like this...
Wednesday, May 28, 2014
Just when you thought that this was a straight-up issues based election, the dirty tactics have come out. On my way to work this morning I noticed an Anthony MacDonald election sign on the corner of Willow Rd. and Imperial Rd. extremely defaced with black paint. Although election signs from all four major parties were on that corner, only Progressive Conservative MacDonald's were vandalized. Of course vandalizing election signs is not a new sport, and even targeted partisan vandalism has been a tool of select delinquent politicos in Guelph in the recent past. It's a sad statement that seemingly well-meaning people of different political persuasions can't discuss the issues without either the extremists or the pranksters making it harder.
Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Arriving at the Essex Street campaign office for James Gordon, the candidate takes a minute to show my around his digs. He leads me to the back and says you'll like this. He opens the door to a large backroom where in one corner there's a stack of campaign signs, and in the other a drum kit and amps. It seems that you can take the boy out of the band, as it were, but then he brings the band with him onto the campaign trail.
Monday, May 26, 2014
News on the weekend that Andrea Horwath was facing a kind of insurgency from members of her own party suggesting that the NDP has abandoned its left flank in favour of chasing undecided centrist voters. It's red meat for the media set that loves a horse race and loves a story about internal party strife. And while Horwath's done well playing it down on the campaign trail in order to keep up her attacks on the Premier and Opposition Leader, it was a point contention for a couple of NDP supports who showed up at a Horwath event in Chatham on the weekend to protest. Or was it?
According to NDP operatives, and confirmed by the Ottawa Citizen, the protesters turned out to be Liberal volunteers posing as disenfranchised NDPers. The geniuses didn't even bother to take off their lanyards.
Friday, May 23, 2014
The nomination period for candidates to declare themselves to run in the 2014 Ontario General Election is over. Nominations closed yesterday, so if you were waiting to get those last couple of signatures together, too bad, you'll have to wait till the next provincial election. So come June 12, you'll have to choose between one of five of the following politicians to represent you at Queen's Park...
Wednesday, May 21, 2014
When last we spoke to Liz Sandals during the 2011 Provincial election, she was merely a Liberal backbencher seeking to return to the Onatrio Legislature. But now, she's the Minister of Education, looking to help her new boss, Premier Kathleen Wynne, hold on to power in an increasingly divided and partisan Queen's Park. Obviously, she likes her chances in spite of everything.
Tuesday, May 20, 2014
For the last week or so I've been trying to find details about when, if ever, there will be a local candidates debate for the Provincial election, and it took Jim Furfaro's Ward 1 blog to give me the info I needed, and the info I needed to share. Mark your calendars for June 3 at 8 pm because the Guelph candidates debate for the 2014 Provincial Election will
go live to air be broadcast from Cutten Fields on Rogers channel 20. The actual debate will happen June 2.*
Saturday, May 17, 2014
Once again, the Green Party leader is being barred from the televised leaders debate. News broke yesterday that the media consortium in charge of arranging the provincial leaders debate including CTV, CBC, Global and TVO, have decided that said debate will be one between Kathleen Wynne, Tim Hudak and Andrea Horwath. Mike Schreiner, Green Party of Ontario leader, will not be joining the debate in spite of the fact that the Greens are once again running candidates in every riding.
Thursday, May 15, 2014
The four main party candidates have more or less been a lock for a couple of months, but as we officially entered the provincial election earlier this month, Guelph's politicos were forced to wonder if many "third party" candidates would put their name on the ballot. Now, for one "third party," that question has been answered. Everyone welcome Juanita Burnett for the Communist Party of Ontario to the 2014 provincial election derby.
Wednesday, May 14, 2014
It was always my intention to make the third season of the Guelph Politicast election centric, but I didn't think it would be provincial election centric. What is it they say about the best laid plans?
So season three of the Guelph Politicast will cover the Guelph candidates running to the Royal City's Member of Provincial Parliament. Obviously, the scheduling of the podcast will depend on the availability of the candidates, which is why it was something of a surprise when the first campaign to set a time and day for a sit down was the one being fronted by a provincial party leader. Yes, the first election edition Guelph Politicast of 2014 is with Mike Schreiner, leader of the Green Party of Ontario and the Green candidate for the riding of Guelph.
Tuesday, May 13, 2014
Any election plan that includes the phrase, "None of our demands will rely on fairy dust or magic pots of money," kind of demands your scrutiny. In Toronto today, the Green Party of Ontario andparty leader Mike Schreiner unveiled their 2014 election campaign platform, which along with environmental protection included new revenue tools, funding initiatives, and their controversial plan to combine Catholic and separate school boards in the province. Schreiner, of course, is our local Green candidate running in Guelph, so we'll be on the front lines of the party's efforts to sell their ideas to the greater provincial electorate.
Proving that the provincial election isn't slowing down the municipal race too much, a new name declared itself for the city council ballot this fall, and they're aiming to represent Ward 1. Everyone, welcome scientist and small business owner Dan Gibson to the 2014 Municipal Election.
Monday, May 12, 2014
Tim Hudak is the Premier in waiting, but only because he's the opposition leader in a campaign against a tired and scandal plagued government. Frankly, Hudak should be kicking Kathleen Wynne's butt so hard that the grandchildren of the Premier's grandchildren should be feeling it. But he isn't. Despite gas plants, eHealth, Ornge, debt, and more than a decade in power, Hudak still can't, as they say, seal the deal with the electorate, running in what's basically a dead heat with the Liberals. And more to the point, he seems incapable of swinging voters his way because he seemingly can't campaign in a competent manner.
Sunday, May 11, 2014
I guess all of Kathleen Wynne's tough talk regarding Stephen Harper and his negative effect on Ontario has made the Prime Minister itchy for some election action of his own. That might be why four federal by-elections are now scheduled for June 30, just over three weeks after the Ontario general election on June 12.
Thursday, May 8, 2014
With the Ontario Election now officially underway, expect to hear from every major party as to what they plan to do, and how, and when, and why for the people of the Province of Ontario. One of the ways candidates get that word out is through social media platforms like your Reddits, your Instagrams, and your Pinterests, but the most ubiquitous seem to still be Facebook and Twitter.
Twitter's becoming more common, following along the same promotional trajectory as Facebook. That is to say that if you have anything to promote, you need a Twitter account. It is, after all, the most direct and succinct way to get your message out, so it really seems like a must have. But not all of Guelph's provincial election candidates have a Twitter account, and it seems that some of us, apparently, are pretty upset about it.
Monday, May 5, 2014
Oh yeah, there's still a municipal election too. Another name appeared on the ballot today for the local mayoral race, and it's Joseph St. Denis, and unless I'm mistaken, you may know him better as "Shoeless Joe." The anti-consumerism advocate is the fifth person to make a run for the top job at city hall.
Friday, May 2, 2014
Hey! It's everybody's favourite time of year: construction season!! And to make life even more fun for Guelphites looking to navigate quickly along the by-ways of our fair town, construction will soon be impacting one of the busiest intersections of the city.
Thursday, May 1, 2014
You'd think an appearance by the President of the United States on the University of Toronto campus would be newsworthy. Look, Obama even met with a community blogger while he was there. Seriously though, the gentleman with me in this picture is actually Louis Ortiz, AKA: Bronx Obama.