PEI Greens: A Night of Firsts

PEI Greens 2019 : Members of the Legislative Assembly | Peter Bevan-Baker in New Haven—Rocky Point | Hannah Bell in Charlottetown—Belvedere | Lynne Lund in Summerside—Wilmot | Trish Altass in Tyne Valley—Sherbrooke | Michele Beaton Mermaid—Stratford | Karla Bernard in Charlottetown—Victoria Park | Steve Howard in Summerside—South Drive | Ole Hammarlund Charlottetown—Brighton |
results via CBC

Back in 2015, Peter Bevan-Baker was the first Green ever elected in PEI.  It was only the second time any third party had ever won a seat in PEI.

Then, in a 2017 by-election, Hannah Bell won a second Green seat.

I’m not a big believer in Opinion Polls in politics.  Parties used to do them as research, to get a feel for how voters felt, and to get an idea which way they might vote (and what they could change to get voters to vote for their party).   Largely because I think they’re misused.  But it’s a good bet the only Opinion Polls we see today are only the ones whoever paid for them wants us to see.  They are used as advertising.  Propaganda to convince us how to vote.   And in these days of decimated news rooms, main stream media outlets have taken to writing entire articles about Opinion Poll results: they’re treated as news by the main stream media.

The only Opinion Poll that counts is the one on Election Day.   Even so, for the last year or so, the third party Greens have been consistently polling ahead of PEI’s Liberal Government.  That’s not a single Opinion Poll, it’s a trend— and in a traditionally 2 party province.   Clearly such a trend is a strong indication that voters are looking for change.

This trend made people start thinking and talking about the unthinkable… what if the upstart Greens, going into the election with only 2 MLAs — were to come out the other side with enough support to form government?  Pretty wild idea, right?

Firsts

Last night, PEI Greens MLA’s Peter Bevan-Baker and Hannah Bell were both re-elected to the Legislative Assembly of Prince Edward Island.  That was the first time any third party MLA had ever been re-elected in PEI.

It was also the first time a third party became a second party in PEI.  The Greens are likely to form the Official Opposition (at minimum).

Although the Greens didn’t win enough seats (14) to claim a majority, they did win 8 seats.  Clearly a Green record for Canada.

A clear majority— five of the eight elected Greens— are women.  I understand no PEI party has ever managed anything like this before.

Added to the single female PC candidate, that makes six: a record number women sitting MLAs in PEI.  Another First.

 2019 Prince Edward Island General Election Result Chart | Colour: Blue | Progressive Conservative - Leader Dennis King | 26 Candidates | 8 seats in 2015 | 8 seats at the dissolution of the legislature | 12 seats in 2019 | +4 | 29,333 votes | 36.52% Change -0.88 | Colour: Green | Green Party of PEI | Leader Peter Bevan-Baker | 26 Candidates | 1 seat in 2015 | 2 seats at the dissolution of the legislature | 8 seats in 2019 | +6 | 24,591 votes | 30.62% | Change +19.81 | Colour: Red | Liberal - Leader Wade MacLauchlan | 26 Candidates | 18 seats in 2015 | 16 seats at the dissolution of the legislature | 6 seats in 2019 | -10 | 23,711 votes | 29.52% | Change -11.31 | Colour: Orange | New Democratic - Leader Joe Byrne | 23 Candidates | 0 seats in 2015 | 0 seats at the dissolution of the legislature | 0 seats in 2019 | -- | 2,402 votes | 2.99% | Change -7.98 | Colour: Grey | Independent | 3 Candidates | 0 seats in 2015 | 1 seat at the dissolution of the legislature | 0 seats in 2019 | -1 | 282 votes | 0.35% | Change +35 | Colour: White | Vacant | 0 seats at dissolution | 1 Seat in 2019 | TOTAL 104 Candidates | 2015: 27 seats | dissolution: 27 seats | 2019 27 seats | Popular Vote: 80,319 | 100% |
Wikipedia: 2019 Prince Edward Island General Election

Now What?

The ruling Liberals dropped to third place.  The PEI Progressive Conservative Party had gone through 5 leaders in 5 years, but 2 months before this election, they chose a new leader.  Under Dennis King’s leadership, the PC’s won 12 seats, two shy of a majority, but certainly enough for a minority government if he can get the Confidence of the House.  The CBC commentators talked about how Mr King’s leadership style had contributed to the civility of the election.  Listening to his own post election speech, peppered with words like collaboration and sustainability, he seems to be an old style PC, and it sounds as though the reimagined PC party will actually be both progressive and conservative under his leadership.

But its early days; we will need to see how it unfolds.

Under Westminster rules, Liberal Premier Wade MacLauchlan  will be given an opportunity to win the confidence of the house.  This seems unlikely as the outgoing Premier was unable to retain his own seat, and his party is down to 6 MLAs.

More likely possibilities are that Dennis King’s PCs could form an actual minority government on their own.  Or his PCs could forge a Confidence and Supply Agreement with the Greens.  Or the Liberals to ensure electoral stability for the next 4 years.   Or the PCs could join with another party to form a ruling coalition.

Just as the Greens and Liberals could form a majority ruling coalition.  My best guess is the PEI Greens won’t join a coalition with anyone; they’ve worked too hard to build a viable third party to turn PEI back into a 2 party province.

Is it really a Green wave sweeping the country?  It sure looks like it.  But if we had some form of Proportional Representation, there would be many more Green MPs in Parliament.  Nearly a million voters voted Green federally in 2008.  And not a single Green was elected that year.  The GPC hasn’t earned that many votes since.   That doesn’t mean those Green voter stopped being Green, they just stopped voting Green because voting Green wasn’t effective.  So maybe it isn’t a “Green Wave” … maybe it’s just a case of the people who want to vote Green actually voting Green.  Because they believe in the policy that’s been formed out of Green values.  And they believe in the candidates who would best represent them.

However it plays out, it will be interesting.   Go Greens!

Hannah Bell and Peter Bevan Baker at the 2018 Guelph Green Party Convention

[Republished from Whoa!Canada]

More Reading: Tragedy and politics on Prince Edward Island

A statement from PEI Greens Peter Bevan-Baker

On The Loss of a Friend

CHARLOTTETOWN – It is with the deepest sadness that Green Party leader, Peter Bevan-Baker issued the following statement:

“As Leader of the Green Party of Prince Edward Island, I was bereft to learn about the death of Josh Underhay and his son in a tragic accident today.

“Josh has been a dear friend and colleague of mine for many years, as a volunteer, musician, passionate cycling advocate and Green Party supporter. He has touched the lives of everyone who knew him, including the students he taught, fellow musicians, and members of the party. Whether advocating for proportional representation, dazzling us with his mastery of languages, or being there to support fellow candidates, Josh brought humour, enthusiasm and boundless energy to every situation.

“I simply cannot imagine how much he will be missed.

Peter Bevan-Baker and Josh Underhay

“Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends, and I know we will all join together to provide each other with support and comfort during this terrible time.”

All Green election activities will be suspended for the remainder of the campaign.

We ask all media to respect the privacy of the family at this time. Please direct all media inquiries to Green Party of PEI Director of Communications Shannon Carmont.


You can help Josh Underhay’s family by donating to the GoFundMe:
https://www.gofundme.com/raise-money-for-the-family-of-josh-underhay

Welcome WRGreens Candidates

WRGreens second nomination meeting has filled our slate of 2019 WRGreens candidates.  Congratualations!

Cambridge GPC Candidate

  • Michele Braniff

Kitchener—Conestoga GPC Candidate

  • Stephanie Goertz

Kitchener South—Hespeler GPC Candidate

David Weber, Kitchener South—Hespeler Candidate makes his case

  • David Weber

Mingling

Music

Networking

Cambridge, Kitchener—Conestoga and Kitchener South—Hespeler Candidate Nominees
Candidate Nominees: Cambridge: Michele Braniff, Kitchener—Conestoga: Stephanie Goertz,
Kitchener South—Hespeler: Ian Graham, Archie Henderson, David Weber

With all our candidates chosen, our 2019 candidates first official outing was the following Saturday’s pancake flipping team at the 2019 Elmira Maple Syrup Festival.

In 2015 WRGreens only female candidate was Michele Braniff in Cambridge.  In 2018 we got closer to gender balance when Stacey Danckert ran in Kitchener Centre provincially.  But now, in 2019, we are especially pleased to note the WRGreens gender imbalance now swings the other way, with 3 of our 5 (60%) candidates being women.

THE FULL SLATE

Congratulations to all our 2019 candidates!

David Weber                Michele Braniff             Stephanie Goertz            Kirsten Wright             Mike Morrice
Kitchener South—Hespeler  •   Cambridge    •   Kitchener—Conestoga      •     Waterloo      •     Kitchener Centre

 

 

 

 

WRGreens Candidate Nominations TONIGHT: April 4th!

Green Party of Canada Nominations

Thursday, 4 April 2019 from 6:30pm to 8:30pm

Come vote for your riding’s Green Party candidate for the 2019 Federal Election!
Whether you’re a GPC member or just considering green, you’re welcome to come along and hear from the candidate nominees and find out about the Green Wave growing in Waterloo Region and across Canada.

Cambridge Nominee

Returning Cambridge Candidate Michele Braniff was unable to attend the WRGreens preNomination meeting so there is no available video.  Instead, you may listen to the tail end of the speech she gave at the Cambridge Greens launch last year.

    • Michele Braniff

As this would be Michele’s 3rd time running for the Green Party, you can check our more of her past election videos: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ap3lnrg4_SI&list=PLM8NcWI58uu5AaNIMguCVNSvWQZTHjiL4

Kitchener—Conestoga Nominee

    • Stephanie Goertz

Kitchener South—Hespeler Nominees

    • David Weber

This would be David’s 4th time running for the Green Party, so you can see more of him in past election debates: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLM8NcWI58uu466PNnvdfbhlRheVekOiwl

    • Ian Graham
    • Archie Henderson

Unfortunately Mr Henderson wasn’t at the prenomination event, so you’ll have to come out to the event to hear from him!

There will still be a contest for districts with only one nominee; the ballot also has a choice for “None Of The Above”.

In order to vote for a candidate your membership must have been activated by 6 March 2019, or if you have an expired membership you can renew it before or at the event.

6:30pm Doors open (hear the music)
7:15pm Official business gets underway: Introductions, hear from the candidate nominees and voting will ensue!
Musical performances will be scattered through the night and we’ll end with an opportunity to socialize. There’ll be light refreshments and additional food and beverage service will be available. Come early for a pre-event dinner!

What: Joint Nomination Contest for Cambridge, Kitchener—Conestoga, Kitchener South—Hespeler
When: Thursday, 4 April 2019 from 6:30pm to 8:30pm
Where: Edelweiss Tavern
Location: 600 Doon Village Road, Kitchener, Ontario Map 1

#GreenWaveRising      #VoteGreen2019


 

Bill 71, Paris Galt Moraine Conservation Act, 2019

Mike Schreiner: “It’s time we started taking seriously our sacred responsibility to leave a livable planet for our children and grandchildren.”

On Wednesday February 20th, 2019, Mike Schreiner made history again when he introduced his first Private Member’s Bill in the Legislative Assembly of Ontario.

You can read Bill 71, Paris Galt Moraine Conservation Act, 2019 online
(
An Act to conserve the Paris Galt Moraine by providing for the Paris Galt Moraine Conservation Plan)

In the face of climate change, resource extraction and sprawl, Mike’s draft legislation seeks to protect the Paris Galt Moraine, an essential water ecologically sensitive recharge area in the Grand River Watershed which naturally purifies water for the citizens of Guelph and the surrounding area.  Bill 71  would amend the province’s Planning Act and Development Charges Act  to more strictly regulate development that could jeopardize the moraine’s integrity.

This is about conserving what nature can do for free, so I cannot think of a more fiscally responsible solution. Failure to act could put the government on the hook for hundreds of millions in water infrastructure, like an expensive pipeline from the Great Lakes.
—Mike Schreiner.

Mike wrote the draft legislation over a period of months where he consulted with water experts and Ontario stakeholders, including First Nations, municipalities, farmers and MPPs from all parties.

With this important legislation, Mike has demonstrated the Green Party’s core commitment to participatory democracy and consensus based governance by building all-party support, which resulted in the bill’s passage at Second Reading on March 7th, 2019. “I’m glad my colleagues unanimously showed their commitment to Ontario’s water today. Safeguarding water and food-growing farmland should not be partisan issues. Let this be a first step towards all-party collaboration to protect the places we love,” said Schreiner.

First Green Bill gets all-party support! Let this be the first step of all-party collaboration to protect Ontario's water for our children and grandchildren." - Mike Schreiner, MPP, Green party of Ontario

I appealed to good progressive conservative thinking from the past. But it took four different bills over two years before the Oak Ridges Moraine was protected by legislation. With climate change on Ontario’s doorstep, and $1.2 billion in damage last year alone, we must act quicker. I look forward to working on this bill at committee, and this legislation returning to the House for a final vote.
Mike Schreiner, First Green legislation passes key vote with all-party support

 

Nominations: Kitchener Centre and Waterloo

Kirsten Wright speaks to the crowd

There was a packed house for the Kitchener Centre and Waterloo Green Party nomination contest, held at Descendants Brewery on Wednesday, 6 March 2019.

Green Party of Ontario Deputy Leader Abhijeet Manay

Green Party of Canada Organizer, Randi Ramdeen


Bob Jonkman, Kirsten Wright, Ian Graham and Mike Morrice

Music by Joni NehRita

Candidate Nominee Q & A

Returning Officers Matt Piggot and Dave Doulson

Congratulations to Mike Morrice for winning the Kitchener Centre nomination, and to Kirsten Wright for winning the Waterloo nomination!

And many thanks to all those from the Waterloo Region Greens who helped put on this event, the largest Green Party nomination contest in Waterloo Region history!

March 6th 2019: 2019 Nomination Contest

As the Green Wave rises,  the reservations keep coming…

Joni Neh Rita

We’ll have musical entertainment provided by local musicians Joni NehRita and Craig McNair.

Donations will be accepted to cover the evening’s costs, pay our musicians and fund the campaigns.

To vote, you must have purchased a membership no later than February 4th, 2019, or if your membership has lapsed within the last year (+90 days), you will have the option of renewing it at the event.

New location!
Descendants Beer & Beverage Co.
319 Victoria Street North, (Map)
Kitchener, Ontario

The nomination contest will be held on Wednesday, 6 March 2019 from 7:00pm to 8:30pm

This is a free event, but please register at Eventbrite.

Meet The Nominees #KitCen

Candidate Nominee Ian Graham in conversation at the WRGreens PreNomination Social

Ian Graham has lived in Kitchener Centre since 1994 and seen many changes to the downtown core. He is a graduate of Wilfrid Laurier University, receiving a BA in Music in 1991.

Ian was inspired to pursue a nomination for the Green Party of Canada because of his belief that we have the technology, resources, and will power to transform Canada to a better future with clean energy and make an environment that is healthy for all Canadians to be part of. Inspired by his Dad who bought a cottage and made it off grid, he realized that there are many ways to be independent and take better care of our environment. Ian also feels strongly that we can do better in our education system, giving the benefits of art, music and even financial knowledge with the foundations of core subjects. Health care has been ever more on his mind as he has seen the impact of dementia on his Mom recently.

Ian has been employed in many things from music to technology. He is one of the founding members of WREVA (Waterloo Region Electric Vehicle Association) who hosts the largest event in Canada for National Drive Electric Week. With his passion for renewable energy, Ian walks the walk, having installed multiple solar arrays and driving everything from a van on vegetable oil to multiple electric cars. He researches the economics and investments of renewable energy and feels that Canada has a huge opportunity for this trillion dollar economy.  He feels strongly that moving to a clean energy economy has the benefit of numerous jobs, independence and even more importantly, taking the strain off of our health care system.

Ian is a huge fan of the band RUSH, passionate for hockey, playing 3-4 times a week himself and cheering on the Maple Leafs, and enjoys being away at his family’s off grid cottage north of Manitoulin Island. He also has been the organist at St. Columba Church in Waterloo for over 28 years and works with many local musicians helping them record their music.

Ian looks forward to learning new skills and abilities with the Green Party in 2019.

Follow Ian on Twitter @redbartesla

The nomination contest will be held on Wednesday, 6 March 2019 from 7:00pm to 8:30pm

New location!
Descendants Beer & Beverage Co.
319 Victoria Street North, (Map)
Kitchener, Ontario

This is a free event, but please register at Eventbrite.

Meet The Nominees #KitCen

Candidate Nominee Mike Morrice in conversation at the WRGreens PreNomination Social

Mike Morrice grew up on the west island of Montreal as the middle brother of three boys. His family moved to Newmarket Ontario in 1997, and in 2003 he went on to study at Wilfrid Laurier University, completing a double degree in business and computer electronics. Mike was quickly hooked by the entrepreneurial spirit of Waterloo Region.

After reading a book called Ishmael, his eyes were opened to how recently we have begun living at odds with the rest of the living world. Mike was inspired to bring together his business training with his desire to see more decisive action on the climate crisis, and so he got to work.

Mike has spent the 10 years since working with hundreds of business to accelerate the shift to a green economy.

In 2008 while studying at Laurier, Mike founded Sustainable Waterloo Region (SWR) and piloted Canada’s first Green Economy Hub. Within five years, the Hub had engaged companies employing 14% of Waterloo Region’s workforce, all committed to setting and achieving voluntary climate goals. Mike also spearheaded the creation of ClimateActionWR, a collaborative effort that secured unanimous support from Regional & City Councils for our community’s first-ever climate target (a 6% reduction by 2020, since raised to 80% by 2050), and initiated what is now evolv1, Canada’s first net-positive energy multi-tenant building.

In response to global interest in replicating Green Economy Hubs, Mike founded Green Economy Canada in 2013 and led the award-winning organization until late last year. Today there are 7 Green Economy Hubs across Ontario supporting over 250 organizations lowering their impact and increasing their profitability.

Mike was named Young Alumni of the Year by Laurier (2011), Young Entrepreneur of the Year by the KW Chamber of Commerce (2012), won a Special Citation for Social Entrepreneurship by EY Canada (2018), and has been an Ashoka Fellow since 2012.

Mike describes his journey starting Sustainable Waterloo Region in a TEDx talk on his website. You can also follow the campaign on Facebook, check out his online resume, LinkedIn profile, and Twitter profile.

The nomination contest will be held on Wednesday, 6 March 2019 from 7:00pm to 8:30pm

New location!
Descendants Beer & Beverage Co.
319 Victoria Street North, (Map)
Kitchener, Ontario

This is a free event, but please register at Eventbrite.

Meet The Nominees #KitCen

Bob Jonkman, Candidate Nominee with his son Willem
Candidate Nominee Bob Jonkman poses with his son at the WRGreens PreNomination Social

Bob Jonkman has championed Proportional Representation since he volunteered for Fair Vote Canada in the 2007 referendum. As an Executive Member of the very active Fair Vote Waterloo Region Chapter, Bob came to believe electoral reform could best be accomplished by entering politics. He ran for office federally in 2015 and provincially in 2018 as the Green Party candidate in Kitchener—Conestoga.

Working with local social justice organizations has helped foster Bob’s commitment to achieving the goals of equity and inclusion. His community service includes work with the WRNonviolence Day In The Park, KWPeace, and as an active member of the Social Development Council of Waterloo Region. Bob has volunteered with the PTA, worked to save Victoria Glen Park from development, fought the placement of a biogas mega plant in downtown Elmira, and served on the Elmira BioFuel Citizens’ Committee. In his spare time Bob enjoys participating at CKMS-FM, the local community radio station where he is on the Board of Directors.

Bob’s digital community service includes organizing and giving presentations at computer user group meetings. As a long time member of the Free Software community, Bob encourages the use of software that respects computer users’ freedom. He’s a strong advocate for transparent government and freely available Open Data in government and business, balanced with protection of personal privacy through cryptography and safe online practices.

Professionally, Bob is a small business owner providing computer consulting, technical support and training to large and small Ontario businesses.

Born in the Netherlands and raised in Burlington, Ontario, Bob and Laurel chose to move to Elmira to raise their son twenty years ago.

Bob’s commitment to the Green Party is rooted in shared values that have inspired his work to enact positive change for a stronger democracy and a sustainable future.

More about Bob:

Follow Bob:

email: bob.jonkman@greenparty.ca

The nomination contest will be held on Wednesday, 6 March 2019 from 7:00pm to 8:30pm

New location!
Descendants Beer & Beverage Co.
319 Victoria Street North, (Map)
Kitchener, Ontario

This is a free event, but please register at Eventbrite.