Thursday, October 30

Candidate Report/Review of Election 2008

Hi Liberals/Supporters/Friends:

Election Day 2008 is history and the results were not as some of us wished for locally or across the country. My numbers being down so much from last time begs the question; why. Overall our only consolation is that Mr. Harper did not get the majority he was hoping for and as you probably saw on the federal level the knives were out right-away if we are to believe the media. Also, though Mr. Dion announced that he will be leaving as soon as a new leader is elected they appeared to expect me to project blame and they continue to speculate on possible infighting in search of a story. Since it will likely be awhile before another election we can hope that Mr. Harper quits jacking around and starts with the business of governing, hopefully in the best interests of all Canadians.

Before proceeding further I want to take this opportunity to thank my campaign team and all that supported me whether in actively campaigning or by voting for me. Though I did so on Election night and individually I hope I didn’t miss someone which I can see might be easy to do. Some days I didn’t make it to the office because of how schedule and commitments worked out so I may not have met some supporters. However; I will take the chance and recognize the following: Russ, Lorne, Mary, Lynn, Pat, Mel, Bal, Frank, Hubert, Leslie, Rita, Marie, Dianne, Diane, Audrey, Stan and students, Roberto, Ryan, Andrew, Zack, Jessica and Anastasia. Thanks a mil all.

Also, since good business practice suggests we should do a review, assess the process and outcome and compile a report I developed a questionnaire to assist me get feedback I believe may be helpful for next time and I have arranged for a get-together to review and debrief with the team and others on Saturday Oct. 25. Though a more tangible measure it’s idealistic to expect everyone to respond. To date those returned confirm some observations expected and identified room for improvement.

As you likely know since nomination I took every reasonable opportunity available to attend community events, went door-to-door and kept abreast of party information and the political scene in general to help get known. As you might anticipate I got questioned as to why I was doing it when an election had not been called. Some suggested it to be a futile exercise given the entrenched Conservative tradition here. None-the-less I soldiered on occasionally doing door-to-door since it is also an opportunity to hear from some people what they perceive the issues to be. I also attended as many public events as possible where the same sentiments were also expressed. Many appeared to have bought into the unrelenting Conservative propaganda in addition to which Mr. Harper and the Conservatives provided no plan until no opportunity was available for it to be challenged. Likewise, they continued to deny a recession was underway until the election was over. It’s interesting to observe the dance of avoidance and euphemisms used and now they even admit openly that they plan to elicit buy-in by the opposition so they can not be blamed. I’m anxiously waiting to hear if any voters feel lied to the same as in the Spring when the Provincial Conservatives unabashedly granted themselves a 34% remuneration increase that wasn’t raised in the platform or election campaign. It baffles me how those that vote for them can in good conscience do so for a party that only provided a vague plan at the last minute when there was no opportunity for debate and allowed themselves to be conned into believing such party governs best when history shows otherwise. What a mockery; within hours of re-election Mr. Harper started admitting the potential for problems in our economy? He even produced an action plan to deal with downturn which action he had ridiculed Mr. Dion on. He now freely admits the possibility of deficit budgeting. So I respectfully ask; in retrospect, who was being truthful? No wonder the majority of the public are skeptical. However, let’s get back to the review and report on the campaign.

As you might guess, because of people’s time, responsibilities and other commitments it is difficult to entice supporters to commit to a role other than a general commitment that they’ll help when the time comes. As you might also anticipate when the time comes the realities of living and circumstances dictate the need for other considerations. Life and living just doesn’t always cooperate the way we desire. Unfortunately, health or other circumstances had intervened for some and consequently we were left scrambling for replacements. Whether because of an increasingly wobbly economy or what, it was difficult to get volunteers, and since everyone including candidates are volunteer it becomes equally difficult to accept criticism as volunteered by one individual that “it was the worst-run campaign she had ever seen”.

Fortunately, most feedback received is relatively objective and positively framed making it easier to accept. It sure helps one empathize with and understand what Mr. Dion, such a person of integrity and honor had to go through, though on a much larger level. Assuming everyone did their best and to put the election experience and results in perspective I suggest we remember the huge pessimism amongst so much of the electorate and the corresponding drop in voter turn-out that continues to worsen. The lack of a valid reason for an election at this time doesn’t enhance the prospects for in the near future. Unfortunately these considerations don’t address the issue of voter apathy which we all need to think long and hard about. We need to realize how dangerous apathy can be. What happened in Nazi Germany springs to mind and I hope all of us would want take action against the increasing fundamentalism that encourages isolative thinking that polarizes rather than draws people together as one should expect in a world which with passage of time and experience should be more enlightened as knowledge. It seems like the more free time we get, the more self-indulged we become the more apathetic and increasingly intolerant we may become consequently the more we need to become aware of our outlook.

For better or worse, Mr. Harper appears to have caught-on and understands how to get in power and hang on at all costs. It appears the end justifies the means for him. Part of his strategy is to get the opposition started prematurely so volunteers will tire. Also, the public are likely to perceive one as anxious and/or jumping the gun. At the end of the spring session of Parliament Mr. Harper sensed the need to move for several reasons and over the summer psyched the public into accepting a need for an election despite his set election date for Oct. 2009. Shortly before his actual call it became clearer that they meant business this time which was underscored by the Conservatives’ starting to engage offices. We too decided it was time to move on securing space. Unfortunately, the first couple of possibilities we unearthed fell through and we were already a couple of days into the campaign before good fortune hit. As a result of my connections and thanks to Aboriginal Housing we secured ideally located space that became our campaign office.

Though Russ, Mary, Lorne and Pat kicked into gear right-away others because of commitments had difficulties extricating and freeing the time required right-away. As anyone that has worked closely in a campaign knows there’s lots that needs to be attended to especially right-away. In retrospect, an office ‘work-plan’ (see attached sample based on the 2008 campaign) would have been helpful from the start since a campaign office must run independently though of course for and without the candidate who has so many duties. When not busy on getting up-to-speed on policy, platform, politics in general, there are interviews, forums, open-houses and speaking engagements and in the balance of time available he must fit in door-to-door campaigning. Required activities and expectations leave little time for much else when attempting to fit all that is expected into the shortest campaign-time in Canadian history. It was difficult to carve out time for practice of speeches though fortunately I was reasonable familiar with party policies most of which were eventually weaved into the platform. I also had to endeavor to keep my policy manual current since no stepped forward or was prepared to monitor, generate and update the manual which is a must for quick reference in the forums. This manual is most important and needs highest priority in any campaign. Due to lack of time I was only able to drop by the office occasionally as time and commitments allowed. On return home at night there are phone calls to be returned and many received responses to their emails at 2 or 3 am.

Issues raised varied depended on location, those raising them, the day and current national issues. As you might guess the main issues were; health, the carbon tax, the Wheat Board and choice for farmers and later in the campaign the economy. Though I hate to admit it I often found myself defending our leader, the Green Shift and gun-control; some even resurrected the NEP and some questioned the need for the election. Many appeared to doubt the Green Shift tax return plan and some appeared hung-up ideologically about crime, childcare and abortion. In an attempt to obtain feedback and to help bring conclusion to the campaign I developed and fanned out a questionnaire and requested feedback.

Review of returns of the Post-election Review questionnaire distributed to obtain feedback indicates 8 of a possible 25 respondents completed and returned the survey and one provided a brief scathing freelance observation that “it was the worst managed campaign they had seen over the years”. In summary, all answered the first question affirmatively. Five answered question 2 positively and 6 answered questions 3 and 4 in the affirmative and similarly the majority responded affirmatively to the next 3 questions. Four responded affirmatively to questions 5 and 6. Three responded negatively to questions 5 and 6. The majority answered questions 7,8, 9 and 10 affirmatively and two did not rate q 10. Question 11 was 50:50 and 3 responded affirmatively to qs 12 and 13 while four gave no indication. One did not respond to number 14 and the other 7 respondents varied in degree of feedback for additional observations. A couple of memos from young people over the past couple of days were most insightful are summarized as follows:
"oh well; this is SA, the green shift was not well packaged and difficult to sell, the Cons. were well-financed and used it to decimate Stephane and our message in the minds of voters and then we were side-swiped by the economic down-turn which the Cons. used to full advantage and people obviously bought". Otherwise they appeared positive to go again. I encouraged and pointed to the need for young people to be involved in party activities. It was noted that stars must align; people, money, leadership, economy, timing and there must be no turning back once on the train. Everyone must be supportive and aggressive in pursuit of as much funding as possible to ensure the best job possible and to not only counter the opposition but be in the lead disseminating the message we want the electorate to have. One person can not be expected to be a miracle worker doing the job and trying to turn the tide. We must remember the purpose of a party, in this instance the Liberal Party is to further Liberal policies and assist in electing a representative that will achieve this goal. In joining a party we agree with these goals and principles and do our utmost to achieve the richer, fairer, greener, gentler Canada we all so much want.

Having reviewed operation of this last campaign the following is a Summary of Recommendations for next Campaign:

1. Generation of an organized, up-to-date ‘Policy Manual’ should be the number 1 priority
2. Next, a tentative ‘Work Plan’ should be developed for the next election based on 38 days (that identifies the need for daily updates in keeping with the various deadlines required as well as the length of the election campaign).
3. The ‘work-plan’ should identify need for office to be rented as soon as positive indications of a pending ‘Election Call’ i.e. the governing party arranging same.
4. That the work-plan identify earliest possible date for arrangements for installation of phones, furniture and computers
5. That work-plan to identify the need for and indicate regular dates for staff meetings as well as for meetings with candidate.
6. That the work-plan should identify the need for a letter to be drafted on the first or second day of the campaign addressed to list of identified donors – members and supporters asking for a contribution at the earliest possible time since expenditures and what needs to be done depend on funding available. Letter should identify the necessities required for a successful campaign i.e. office, phone and furniture rentals, signs, brochures, mailing, travel and how because of the short duration of a campaign suppliers will only supply C.O.D (Volunteers need to be assigned right-away to follow-up after the letter should be received. It should be noted that Elections Canada rules require that only personal cheques can be accepted and they will be income-tax receipted. It is best that as soon as the individual offers that they plan on contributing we personally offer to pick-up and deliver the cheque to the agent).
7. That the work-plan to identify the need for manager and office staff to identify the date for mailing brochures to both rural and urban areas, (Work Plan to identify the need for the Brochure Committee to complete and arrange for production of same as soon as the Party Platform is released).
8. That work-plan should suggest early date for phone follow-up re donations and a subsequent follow-up if necessary and specify the need for in-person contact and to offer immediate pick-up.
9. That work-plan to identify need for arrangements for distribution, location and tracking of signs (to assist later with pick-up).
10. That work-plan to identify need for arrangements for closedown of the office and returns.

Conclusion:
Thanks to the party for affording me the opportunity to serve you and our community in such a prestigious and honorable undertaking. Thanks especially to all those that helped whether with financial support, in the office, door-to-door, signs or whatever else and sorry that despite our Trojan efforts the number of those voting Liberal actually dropped contrary to what I certainly hoped for. Special thanks to Mary Insley, Russ, Lorne, Pat, Lynn, Mel, Frank, Doug, Bal, Lee, the many others that helped in whatever way, and especially Senator Joyce who accompanied me to many outlying locations. Unfortunately, it seems like it was not meant to be and we didn’t get as much money as we’d hoped for either. Starting we had almost $11,000 from the trust account and our spending was approximately $23,000 consequently we only raised approximately $12,000. Thanks to all the contributors including those that contributed the maximum allowable. Unfortunately, it appears that some people believe that corporate support is still allowed but unfortunately; it is no longer allowed under Elections Canada guidelines. Thanks again all.

The outcome overall and locally was disappointing. It was my hope to increase the number voting Liberal here rather than getting less than last time. Please accept my apologies. I accept some but not total responsibility since a candidate can not be responsible for long-standing cynicism, disconnection and voter apathy, but deserves everyone’s support in everyway possible and underscores once again the importance of the greatest membership base possible as well as funding whether on the local or national level. The national campaign and platform was hijacked by the super-financed Conservatives who were prepared to do anything to hold-on to power. They figuratively assassinated Mr. Dion right-away on his assuming leadership and saturated the media with advertising emphasizing the carbon-tax aspect of the Green Shift which was questioned by many voters by then skeptical added to which their (Conservative) luck increased when signs of the economy spluttering showed in the last week of the campaign. They quickly latched to it suggesting the need for Canadians to stay the course with the “tried and true” rather than risking new ideas and tax-increases. The outcome is now history.

I recommend that as the Conservatives did over the past 3 years we continue campaigning so we’re ready as soon as the next writ is dropped, likely in a couple of years, quite possibly 18 months since they (Conservatives) will not want a new Liberal Leader to get established. I predict Mr. Harper will do his utmost to have it appear as though it’s our fault again when the next election is triggered. I also recommend that the recommendations noted herein be adopted for the next campaign. Respectfully submitted,

Michael Cormican, Liberal Candidate 2008 Election

Monday, October 20

Mr. Dion prepares the way for a new Leadership race

In follow-up to the outcome of the recent election and as you likely know by now Mr. Dion announced that he will step-down as leader of the Liberal Party and over the next several months, the party will conduct a leadership race to determine a successor.

The Harper Conservatives may have won the battle this time but at some point the results of their actions will likely catch up with them. It is my firm belief that the negativism, misrepresentation and character-assassination will come back to haunt them. Money can only do so much, eventually people will see through them. The Conservatives used millions in attack ads and misused government mailing privileges in their attempt to destroy Mr. Dion and the Liberal Party and we lacked the resources to counter the false image they pushed of Mr. Dion and our platform. Mr. Harper and the Conservatives provided no plan until the last minute when there was no opportunity to question it, many voters didn't bother to vote and unfortunately enough people obviously were prepared to vote without knowing his plan and so they won.

As Mr. Dion has said we can not allow a repeat to happen again; however, all our help is needed. Right-away we Liberals need to ensure the Liberal Party will have the financial resources to counter the Conservative push that will likely continue. We need to be generous and contribute to get rid of all debts and establish the financial resources required to ensure we are successful in winning the next election.

We simply must win. And while a one-time donation will help, for long-term strength and stability, we all need to consider making a monthly contribution of $10, $15, $25or more. We believe our vision of a richer, fairer, greener Canada is worth fighting for.

So please, help now to ensure that the next leader of the Liberal Party can turn our vision into a reality. Please check Liberal.ca for updates and to contribute. Your will receive a tax receipt for your contribution which means our contribution only costs us a portion of what we give. Let's support democracy in action. Thank you.

Michael Cormican, Candidate
Liberal Party of Canada, Lethbridge

Friday, October 17

Conclusion of 2008 Election Campaign

Sorry I was unable to keep my blog as up-to-date as I would have liked but as you might imagine with the short timeframe for the campaign and all the demands on ones time it is difficult to find time for these extra expectations unless someone volunteers to do such. Though it may be redundant at this stage suffice it to summarize that the last week flew by. We had a couple of forums, an open house and interviews etc. though Senator Joyce and I managed to get in visits and some main-streeting in Milk River and Coutts as well as Magrath and Coaldale.

Usually we were greeted by someone or other telling us they never see a politician in these areas. However, I believe it is important to visit all key locations in the riding; I just wish we had time for more. We met a couple of the mayors and other key people who were most receptive and friendly. Some of the issues on their minds concern maintaining the vibrancy of their community as well as infrastructure issues and they are always so proud of their community and rightly so. The main issues on farmers minds appear to be the high cost of inputs for farming especially oil and fertilizer and I heard loud and clear that with respect to the Canadian Wheat Board they want it retained but want choice, the same as Ontario, even if they don’t use it. It was all very tiring.

On Friday, October 10 Gloria, I and Senator Fairbairn joined the Liberal contingent attending the October Fest at the German Canadian Club. On Saturday I attended the military display in Galt Gardens and the Parade at 1 pm. It was cold! Later, Gloria and I were guests of Senator Joyce at the 100th Anniversary of the founding of the local 18th Regiment. It was a memorable evening attended by the Lieutenant Governor and lots of Military brass. We are so fortunate to have such dedicated people and for such generous people defending our security.

Since campaign contributions were insufficient to mail brochures to every home in the riding we decided North Lethbridge and the rural areas should get them and we had to get volunteers to deliver as much as we could in Coaldale and the remainder of Lethbridge. A special thanks to all those that volunteered; especially the students and special thanks to Gloria and our family for putting-up with my lack of attention because of my campaigning priority. E day came and of course, we all know the results did not show as we wished. So we can only hope, like the farmer, that next time will be in our favor and we must all learn to live with the outcome. Needless to say gossip and speculation is rampant suggesting Mr. Dion should resign. However, knowing the man of honor he is, I trust he will decide in the overall best interest. Apparently, he is scheduled to make an announcement on Monday afternoon. On Tuesday, Oct. 15 we emptied out the office and started collecting the signs so we don’t run afoul of the regulations. Today went breaking and storing signs, trying to catch-up on yard work and I made a nice stew to get back to routine of a healthy meal again.

Though I have individually thanked my campaign team at this time I want to take opportunity to thank everyone that helped spread the Liberal message and though we did not have the honor of getting the garland I like to believe we are still winners especially when we consider the odds. Unfortunately, numbers wise we died not do as well as the last campaign which is somewhat difficult to understand given the even worse scenario we campaigned in in 2005/6. However, there were fewer that voted this time.

I’m still convinced our platform was and is a good one. It reminds me of Mr. Trudeau’s 'Just Society' and I still believe that if other parties were fair and had not derogated Mr. Dion and promulgated their wrong slant on our platform; it is what most Canadians want. As I said several times during the campaign the Green Shift is akin to a second Industrial Revolution and our proposed tax changes the most radical approach since income taxes were introduced. I believe it would be a boon to industry and euntrepreneurs. The big question is, how can we engage the disconnected majority of potential voters? I want to thank the team and their families for affording them the time to help me. I hope I didn’t overlook anyone. I really appreciate them taking the time for this important aspect of living and governance.

Now we must be honest with ourselves since electioneering is serious business. I plan to do a survey to help obtain tangible feedback on our platform and presentation and my presentation of it as well as call a review meeting while everything is still fresh in our minds and to compile recommendations to help next time around. If you have any great idea on how we could do better I’d appreciate hearing it. Until my next update I’ll wish you the best and with respect to governing we can only trust that Mr. harper will get down to it seriously in the best interests of all of us. Appreciatively,

Michael Cormican, Past Candidate 2008 Election, Lethbridge

Tuesday, October 14

Federal Election Day, October 14, 2008

Hi on Election Day! Yes, today is voting day and I trust if you have not already done so that you will do so before 7:30 pm the time the polls close. May I suggest that you present as early as possible before closing time since I suspect there will be the usual bit of a last-minute stampede. I have done my best to present the Liberal platform, as my fellow candidates have with their party's platform. I have posted summaries of the platform and our Green Shift plan which can be accessed at Liberal.ca or thegreenshift.ca. in one of my earlier blogs.
Good luck in your decision. Hopefully, the results will be in the overall best interest. I thank you for your interest and if you need assistance or a ride to the polls please contact our office at (403) 524-3839 or my cell at 317-0829. Have a great day! It’s a great day for democracy.

Michael Cormican, Liberal Candidate, Lethbridge Riding

Monday, October 13

Summary of week's activities and platform

Hi again!

Time flies and we’ve covered a lot of ground since last communication and alot has happened including a BBQ for the staff on October 5. In all we had about 7 or 8 forums, open houses, preparation for interviews and in between we fitted in visits to most of the key communities in the Riding. It was nice meeting so many nice people including mayors, reeves, school principles and senior. Several people expressed amazement at seeing a politician noting they have never heard of one visiting their area. Most of the usual issues are mentioned and some noted the possible need for assistance with upgrading historical homes and/or stores and the main issue with farmers appears to be the high cost of inputs for farming including oil and fertilizer. Many farmers emphasized that they want to have the right to choice with respect to marketing their crops but do not want the CWB disbanded. It was great to be able to discuss and share ideas on the issues as well as our platform. Of course, we all noted the major issue that is on many minds since last note is the economy. Some people remarked how it was nice to see Mr. Harper appearing “like a deer caught in the headlights instead of Mr. Dion being projected thus by the Conservatives and many noted how well Stephane Dion did in the national Debates and hope people don’t feel too sorry for Mr. Harper suggesting it was nice he get a dose of his own medicine. As I have said more than once we all need to be careful since “birds tend to come home to roost”. It would also serve well that we remember which governments have tended to have the country near debt I,e, Mr. Mulroney and the Conservatives owed 42 billion in 1993. It took the Liberals to clean it up and it looks very like we may have to do so again since even Mr. Harper this week reluctantly admitted that our economy is in a perilous state it being noted that they got rid of the 3 billion contingency the Liberal government left them on change of watch almost 3 years ago. Given such history I ask; how could anyone think the Conservatives could be trusted to manage an guide the economy through the obvious rough times they expect ahead.

The following speech is a good summary of our platform.
The Liberal Party platform for families and businesses

The Liberal Party's platform will help strengthen Canadian families and businesses by providing lower taxes and investing in the Canadian economy, said Liberal Leader St├ęphane Dion.

"A Liberal government will get the fundamentals of the economy right," said Mr. Dion. "We will build a richer Canada by cutting taxes for all Canadian families and businesses, making them more competitive; we will build a fairer Canada by directing significant tax benefits to families with children, increasing benefits to the disabled, seniors and families struggling to achieve success; and we will build a greener Canada by targeting tax cuts to Canadians and businesses to invest in renewable, energy efficient technologies."

A Liberal government will build a richer Canada by:
.leaving more in the pockets of Canadians by lowering the lowest- and middle-income tax rates. Lowering income taxes as much as 10 per cent for many Canadians;

.increasing the competitiveness of Canadian small businesses by lowering the small business tax rate to 10 per cent from 11 per cent. This represents a nine per cent cut in small business taxes;

.lowering the corporate tax rate to 14 per cent by 2013, making Canada one of the most competitive business jurisdictions in the world, driving the Canadian economy and creating jobs; and

.investing in the future and simplifying the tax system for post-secondary students providing most students approximately $1000 each year, and extending the $400 per month education tax credit to apprentices.

A Liberal government will build a fairer Canada by:

.introducing a new $350 refundable child tax credit that will benefit all families;
. increasing the Guaranteed Income Supplement for seniors by $600 a year for low-income seniors even if they don't earn enough to pay taxes, and by $800 a year for low-income senior couples;

.improving the employment credit for low and middle-income Canadians and putting up to $250 more into their pockets;

.making the Disability Tax Credit refundable, significantly improving the incomes of disabled Canadians with low incomes;

.finally indexing the Northern Residents Deduction so the tax benefit addresses the changing costs of Northern Canadians;

.improving the Working Income Tax Credit for low-income Canadians and help them get over the welfare wall; and
. creating a new Guaranteed Family Supplement for the poorest families with children, worth $1,225 a year more per family.

A Liberal government will build a greener Canada by:
. providing up to $10,000 in refundable tax benefits to Canadian families for investments in energy-saving retrofits to their homes. This will improve energy efficiency, contribute to the fight against climate change and save Canadians money;

. implementing an Accelerated Capital Cost Allowance rates, which will provide new tax benefits to Canadian businesses that invest in green technologies. As the price of fossil fuels rises, this tax benefit will accelerate the investment in the technologies that will improve the competitiveness of Canadian companies; and

. improving the Science, Research & Experimental Development tax credit, giving tax benefits to Canadians that innovate and build the solutions of the future.

"The Conservatives have not invested in Canadians, have not lowered income taxes or invested in innovation. That is why Canada has had the lowest growth and productivity since 1990," said Mr. Dion.

"The Liberal Party is the only party that will lower taxes for Canadians in a progressive and effective way. Only a Liberal government will get the fundamentals right and build the economy for all Canadians."

In brief and in summary:
The theme of our platform is “A Richer, Fairer, Greener Canada and we propose that a Liberal Government will tax what we burn, waste or pollute and we will cut taxes on income, investment and innovation. All tax collected on carbon will be returned in amount of $15.1 billion contrary to what the Conservatives push. We plan to cut the rate of tax on the lowest three levels of income-tax by 1.5 % for the lowest and 1% for the next two levels as well as to cut a percentage point from business tax over four years. Also, we have planned several flexibility funds to help business green-up as well as accelerate the speed of return of investment costs. Likewise we propose an increase of $350 in addition to the $1,200 being given for each child as well as increase the GIS (Guaranteed Income Supplement) as well as many other benefits. Our plan has been fully costed and is hailed by all kinds of experts and organizations as the best and most appropriate way to stimulate the economy as it splutters more than Mr. Harper wanted to admit until this week. Among them are the Conference Board of Canada, the Conference of Chief Executives, David Suzuki, numerous professors, a Laureate and even the renowned and conservative think tank, the CD Howe Institute. So how could anyone think the Conservatives would be the best to manage the economy. Likewise; I ask, who was the party and so-called leader that made all the boo boos, not Stephane Dion or the Liberals? So, let’s get on with the job of governing and get the country back on its feet again so we can be the leader the rest of the world expects us to be. Let’s ‘Vote Liberal’ … ‘Vote Michael Cormican’.

Check Liberal.ca or Michaelcormican.com. See monica_samec@yahoo.com re costs and benefits of GSP.
Michael Cormican, Liberal Candidate

Saturday, October 4

Platform Tidbits

Sorry I have not been able to keep up on thiis as well as I would like. As you might guess it's difficult to keep up on everything from phonecalls, door-to-door, meetings, forums and interviews with the paper etc. however, suffice it to say I detect a very different attitude out there sine the last election. Most people are pleasnt and many are fearfull of Harper and the Conservatives. They do not trust him or them and I say rightly so. Most of his henchmen are former harrisite from the Ontario government and despite implying to Ontarians everything in the garden was fine left Ontario and the new Liberal Government of McGinty with almost 6 billion in debt. Now Flaherty and gang are ourkey Federal Ministers and look at what Flaherty said - don't invest in Ontario. Is that leadership? And, why would anyone believe the Tories are good manager anyway? Remember Mulroney left us with a 42 billion debt and it took us - Paul Martin to turn the ship around.

We should always remember what Tories stand for as well as their record and as the saying goes "Tory times are hard times", not to mention that Harper and gang have been the biggest spenders, told business and others they are on their own but could come up wit millions for election promises and still have produced no platform. Now we are teetering again and no contingency to tide us over the rough times ahead. harper is the most mean-spirited PM we have had; he is calculating and called this election giving the shortest time ever for a campaign so the oposition owuld have the least time to try putting out their message. Let's read Naomi Klein's book on how the right operate. their so -called tax-breaks amounted to nothing, just helped the rich since the poor can not buy mch and food is exempt. Heis the most divisive PM in history; just look at his record and what he stood for before he became PM. The rich have got richer and the poor continue to struggle to survive.

It gives me pleasure to introdue you to our platform as follows:




For Immediate Release September 22, 2008

The Liberal Party platform for families and businesses

OTTAWA – The Liberal Party’s platform will help strengthen Canadian families and businesses by providing lower taxes and investing in the Canadian economy, said Liberal Leader St├ęphane Dion.

“A Liberal government will get the fundamentals of the economy right,” said Mr. Dion. “We will build a richer Canada by cutting taxes for all Canadian families and businesses, making them more competitive; we will build a fairer Canada by directing significant tax benefits to families with children, increasing benefits to the disabled, seniors and families struggling to achieve success; and we will build a greener Canada by targeting tax cuts to Canadians and businesses to invest in renewable, energy efficient technologies.”

A Liberal government will build a richer Canada by:

• leaving more in the pockets of Canadians by lowering the lowest- and middle-income tax rates. Lowering income taxes as much as 10 per cent for many Canadians;
• increasing the competitiveness of Canadian small businesses by lowering the small business tax rate to 10 per cent from 11 per cent. This represents a nine per cent cut in small business taxes;
• lowering the corporate tax rate to 14 per cent by 2013, making Canada one of the most competitive business jurisdictions in the world, driving the Canadian economy and creating jobs; and
• investing in the future and simplifying the tax system for post-secondary students providing most students approximately $1000 each year, and extending the $400 per month education tax credit to apprentices.

A Liberal government will build a fairer Canada by:

• introducing a new $350 refundable child tax credit that will benefit all families;
• increasing the Guaranteed Income Supplement for seniors by $600 a year for low-income seniors even if they don’t earn enough to pay taxes, and by $800 a year for low-income senior couples;
• improving the employment credit for low and middle-income Canadians and putting up to $250 more into their pockets;
• making the Disability Tax Credit refundable, significantly improving the incomes of disabled Canadians with low incomes;
• finally indexing the Northern Residents Deduction so the tax benefit addresses the changing costs of Northern Canadians;
• improving the Working Income Tax Credit for low-income Canadians and help them get over the welfare wall; and
• creating a new Guaranteed Family Supplement for the poorest families with children, worth $1,225 a year more per family.

A Liberal government will build a greener Canada by:

• providing up to $10,000 in refundable tax benefits to Canadian families for investments in energy-saving retrofits to their homes. This will improve energy efficiency, contribute to the fight against climate change and save Canadians money;
• implementing an Accelerated Capital Cost Allowance rates, which will provide new tax benefits to Canadian businesses that invest in green technologies. As the price of fossil fuels rises, this tax benefit will accelerate the investment in the technologies that will improve the competitiveness of Canadian companies; and
• improving the Science, Research & Experimental Development tax credit, giving tax benefits to Canadians that innovate and build the solutions of the future.

“The Conservatives have not invested in Canadians, have not lowered income taxes or invested in innovation. That is why Canada has had the lowest growth and productivity since 1990,” said Mr. Dion.

“The Liberal Party is the only party that will lower taxes for Canadians in a progressive and effective way. Only a Liberal government will get the fundamentals right and build the economy for all Canadians.”

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Contact:

Liberal Party of Canada Press Office 613-783-8888 or Michael at 524-3839


Summary of key-points of platform.
Background
A Richer Canada
The Liberal platform stays true to the Liberal legacy of strong economic and fiscal management, including commitments to:

• Balance the budget: We will restore the $3-billion contingency fund abandoned by the Conservatives to give Canada’s government more room to maneuver in tough economic times.

• Tackle the infrastructure deficit: We will work with provinces, territories and municipalities to implement long-term funding for infrastructure that underpins our economic competitiveness and quality of life. We will help to improve our transit, our water treatment, our roads and bridges and our sports and recreational facilities so we can raise our families in healthy, vibrant cities and communities.

• Bolster the manufacturing sector: We will create a $1-billion Advanced Manufacturing Prosperity (AMP) Fund to help Canada’s manufacturing sector retain and create jobs as it transitions to a greener future.

• Provide access to post-secondary education: We will help make post-secondary education accessible to every Canadian by boosting and simplifying existing support for students, and increase investments to support research to help more Canadians succeed in the 21st-century knowledge economy.

• Promote Canadian arts and culture: We will restore the ideological cuts made by the Conservatives, defend artists from censorship, double the budget of the Canada Council for the Arts and provide needed assistance to both artists and institutions in an industry that fosters vibrant, livable cities and communities, supports innovation, helps us understand our past and imagine our future, and stimulates our economy.

A Fairer Canada
The Liberal platform also commits to building a fairer, more inclusive society by:
• Implementing the 30-50 Plan to reduce poverty: We will launch a full-scale attack on poverty in Canada, with the goal of reducing the number of people living below the poverty line by at least 30 per cent, and the number of children living in poverty by at least 50 per cent.

• Creating child care spaces: We will work with the provinces and territories to create new early education and child care spaces that are centered on the quality, universally-inclusive, accessible and developmental (QUAD) principles, giving families a real choice.

• Investing in health care: We will work to clear the bottlenecks that are currently slowing Canada’s access to health professionals, so that more Canadians will get the care they need, with shorter wait times. We will also introduce a national plan for catastrophic drug coverage that would ensure Canadians living with serious illnesses can focus on their health instead of worrying about their finances.

• Investing in new Canadians: We will reverse the irresponsible immigration measures introduced by the Conservatives last spring and invest a total of $800 million in new federal funding to deal with the immigration backlog, welcome more new Canadians, and ensure that they succeed.

• Bringing back the Kelowna Accord: We will bring back the Kelowna Accord and work in consultation with Aboriginal Peoples and provinces and territories to improve Aboriginal health, education and housing outcomes.

A Greener Canada
Building on the Green Shift plan, the Liberal platform contains measures that will:
• Help Canadians go green: We will provide up to $10,000 in direct financial support, and introduce an interest-free Green Mortgage program for up to an additional $10,000 for homeowners making eco-friendly improvements to their homes.

• Protect our health: We will introduce tough new measures to ensure Canadians have cleaner air, fresh water, non-toxic consumer products and safe food.

• Preserve our natural heritage: We will create new National Parks and Marine Protected Areas to help preserve Canada’s cherished wilderness areas and biodiversity.

Canada and the World
• Restore our independent voice of leadership: We will lead, not hinder, multilateral efforts to fight the climate change crisis and we will return to Canada’s traditional position of opposing the death penalty on the global stage.

• Recommitting to development: We will increase Canada’s international assistance contributions and restore Canada’s special relationship with Africa which has been abandoned by the Conservatives.

• Clarity and transparency on Afghanistan: We will unequivocally commit to ending the current military mission in Afghanistan in 2011 and will deliver the same message to our NATO allies who have been too often left to guess what the true position of the Conservative government is. We will carry out the remainder of the mission guided by the principles of accountability and transparency because Canadians deserve to know the whole truth about this mission.

For more details please go to Liberal.ca for platform or to see your benefits through the Green Shift go to thegreenshift.ca

Michael Cormican

Profile

Hi and Welcome to my website!
.
I’m Michael Cormican. I’m aspiring to become your MP in the next Parliament. However, I need your support and your vote to make it. Here’s a little about me.

I’m committed to improving the quality of life and opportunities for everyone in this great country. I have what it takes, speak from the heart and follow through on what I say I will do.

I love life and believe in the sanctity of life from beginning to end and I’m against capital punishment. I’m an optimist; I try to be positive and I expect the best from everyone. I believe there is an answer and I work for solutions. I keep my word.

I have a long record of volunteering in our community and I still serve in several local organizations. Those who know me will confirm I’m considerate; a person of action, fair, positive and approachable. I pull for the little guy and I believe in balance..

I believe the most important issue in the upcoming election is the question of what values will guide our nation. Will they be values of inclusion, sustainability, prosperity and respect for the fundamental dignity of all or will we continue on the road from which there may be no return?

I want a government of vision and that puts people first. I want a government that manage our finances responsibly, is committed to a sustainable environment, supports business and social programs built on the principles of social justice and inclusion that will be available for future generations.



“A Richer, Fairer, Greener Canada”

Please help me make our community and Canada the best by establishing the Early Learning and Childcare Plan, literacy and affordable housing programs and to help eradicate poverty. We need to follow-through on the Kelowna Accord and to reestablish our credibility in the world again. I thank you in anticipation of your support.

My Profile:
• Born in Ireland in 1948; I have been a proud Canadian citizen since 1977.
• Gloria and I were married in 1976, and; we are proud parents of four adult children. Gloria is Family Studies Program Administrator at Lethbridge College.
• My background is a Registered Psychiatric Nurse and I was the Mental Health Programs Contracts Coordinator for Mental Health in Chinook Health Region for 22 years.
• Those who know me can verify that I follow-through on what I set my mind to do.

Without planning it my job addressing health and social issues and community service involvement with youth, underprivileged and aboriginal peoples, affordable housing and poverty helped me to understand people and needs and assist them obtain the help they needed prepared me most appropriately for the role I now seek.

Some of my Community involvements:
Church and School Councils and Scouts,
Habitat for Humanity,Social Housing in Action, and
Aboriginal Housing in Action;
Medicine Tree (Sik-Ooh-Kotoki) Friendship Centre,
Southwest Alberta Coalition on Poverty,
Knights of Columbus,
Natural Family Planning Assoc. of Alberta,
Regional and Provincial Mental Health Advisory Councils,
Local Provincial and Federal Liberal Party Associations, and
Friends of Medicare September 2008