NIAGARA VOTES | Singh stops in Welland – Newstalk 610 CKTB (iHeartRadio)

NIAGARA VOTES | Singh stops in Welland - Newstalk 610 CKTB (iHeartRadio)
People on the street respond: Who are you voting for? – Penticton News
Federal NDP leader Jagmeet Singh will visit Penticton this weekend, just days before the election, in a bid to give a boost to the campaign of local candidate Richard Cannings.

Singh and Cannings will hold a rally Saturday night at the Penticton Lakeside Resort from 7:15 p.m. to 8:45 p.m., an event being billed by organizers as “Jagmeet Rocks Penticton.”

Singh has admitted he hasnt spoken to any premiers during the campaign to see how he could make these plans work, but notes three of his key campaign promises can be implemented without provincial co-operation. For example, his pledge to make dental care coverage public could be enacted though a program like employment insurance, Singh said, and his plan to lower cell phone bills through a price cap imposed by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC).

“We are offering voters a chance to vote for something, for action on climate change, for expanding services including national pharmacare, childcare, and senior’s care to make life more affordable for those struggling,” said Cannings in a news release.

“As Jagmeet pointed out, there is a choice other than denial and delay. I have a record of cooperation in government and I’m asking voters to keep a progressive MP in Ottawa to be part of Jagmeet’s team.”

Video: Canada Election: Jagmeet Singh holds rally in Brampton, Ont. | LIVE

While no formal polling has taken place in the South Okanagan-West Kootenay riding, both 338Canada and the CBC have predicted a race between Cannings and Conservative candidate Helena Konanz that is too close to call.

Although the law only affects Quebec, the stances federal leaders are taking on whether they would use federal powers to challenge it as discriminatory have become an issue both within and outside Quebec in the federal campaign, a test for how far federal leaders are willing to go to support minority rights.

Singh has been paying considerable attention to the riding, visiting multiple times since taking leadership of the party, most recently in August for the kickoff of the Cannings campaign.

"We are not going to intervene in this step of the process, but as Ive said, a federal government always needs to be ready to defend fundamental rights, whether it be womens rights, LGBT rights, rights of minorities or rights of francophone communities outside of Quebec," he said.

With just days to go until the federal election, Castanet hit the streets in Penticton to find out how Okanagan residents are planning to cast their ballots. 

A number of Singhs signature platform promises would require provincial buy-in, including his pledge to implement a national pharmacare program by 2020 and to ensure all families in Canada have access to quality, affordable child care.

"I'm going to vote Liberal, because I'm happy with my prime minister," said one man.

Earlier this week in Quebec City, Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer was also asked directly whether he thinks Bill 21 is discriminatory. He, like Trudeau, sidestepped, and repeated a previous commitment that he wouldnt intervene.

"I'll be voting NDP … I like Jagmeet Singh. He seems like a really trustworthy person, and I think we really need that, especially compared to some of the other candidates," a young woman said. 

Campaigning in Quebec on Thursday, Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau did not answer a direct question about whether he thinks Bill 21 is discriminatory, instead saying a re-elected Liberal government is open to intervening later.