BC Conservative Leader John Cummins and byelection candidate John Martin stopped in Hope on Tuesday for a meet and greet with local residents.
Cummins noted that Martin will offer voters a fresh alternative as MLA and represent the issues of the electorate, putting the riding ahead of the party rather than the other way around.
He said the Conservatives are currently gaining momentum and support in the province, which is demonstrated by the latest Angus Reid opinion poll that shows the Conservatives tied at 23 per cent with the Liberals. The recent addition of former Liberal MLA John van Dongen has also given the party more credibility.
“It certainly was a great push and very positive happening for us,” said Cummins.
“It was just another spark to our campaign.”
Martin said he’s focused on stopping garbage incineration, scrapping the carbon tax, and fixing the “catch-and-release criminal justice system that allows offenders to basically to walk through this revolving door time and time again and never be held accountable for their actions.”
Currently he estimates there are 2,500 criminal charges on the verge of being dismissed because of closed courtrooms and the lack of new judges.
“Basically we don’t have the ability to prosecute these people,” said Martin.
“That is bad news for Hope and the rest of the riding.”
Martin also raised concerns over the erosion of trust between government and the people as a result of the Liberals lying about issues such as BC Rail and the HST, as well as the lack of communication on the introduction of the carbon tax.
“People are looking for change. They’re tired of the Liberals, they’re tired of being deceived and not being spoken to in a straight forward manner, and they don’t want to go back to the NDP,” said Martin.
“There is an option now and a new choice. It’s a small-c conservative government that believes in smaller government and less taxes.”