With longtime Cumberland-Colchester MP Bill Casey no longer in the running and former NDP MLA Lenore Zann now running to fill his spot as the Liberal MP, things should be interesting leading up to the Oct. 21 federal election.
Here is a rundown on who the candidates are for Cumberland-Colchester.
Liberal Party of Canada – Lenore Zann
Lenore Zann of Truro is a former actress. She resigned this week as an Independent MLA after recently leaving the NDP to run for the federal Liberal nomination. Zann served as the NDP MLA for Truro-Bible Hill-Millbrook-Salmon River for a decade.
The climate and other environmental concerns, more “good, green jobs” within the riding and effective, available health and mental health care are some of her top-of-mind issues.
Conservative Party of Canada - Scott Armstrong
Scott Armstrong of Brookfield previously served as a Conservative MP for the former riding of Cumberland-Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley from November 2009 to October 2015 when he was defeated by Bill Casey. He was then appointed as the official opposition critic on Atlantic Canadian issues and ACOA.
He relinquished that post in September 2016 and returning to his former role as a full-time teacher/principal. When he won the Conservative nomination for the riding in 2018 he said his decision to run was based on party leader Andrew Sheer.
"He's a good friend of mine and he's not one to be under-estimated," he said, at the time.
People’s Party of Canada - William J. (Bill) Archer
Archer grew up in the Eastern Passage/Cole Harbour and after moving west to work in 1997 he returned to Nova Scotia in 2007. He is an industrial electrician by trade and currently works as a chief electrician on an oil rig in the middle east. He ran his own international business from 2010-2012.
Archer feels both citizens and business owners pay too much in taxes and supports a move towards less tax and government bureaucracy. He also believes the tolls on Highway 104 are a barrier to provincial trade and that there is too much unused, arable land in the riding.
Green Party of Canada - Jason Blanch
Jason Blanch of Amherst said he decided to join the Green Party because its policies resonate with what he believes – that all aspects of civilization are grounded in environment and that the economy and environment are linked.
Blanch represented the Green Party in the 2009 byelection and in the 2011 and 2015 federal elections. He believes his chances of being elected are better this year because there is more awareness of social and environmental issues. Blanch also believes more people are coming to see the Green Party as a viable option because “they don't play party politics but work across party lines."
NDP - Larry Duchesne
Larry Duchesne of River Philip was officially nominated Wednesday night in Masstown as the NDP candidate for Cumberland-Colchester.
The retired teacher and news reporter also previously ran as a provincial NDP candidate in Cumberland South.
Duchesne said he supports party leader Jagmeet Singh's “progressive program” of expanding Medicare, a real commitment to climate change, progressive labour legislation, affordable housing as well as a large investment in child care, Duchesne said in a post-meeting release.
He describes Liberal Party’s commitment to switching to green energy as “weak” and the Conservative’s plan as "foolhardy”.
National Citizens Alliance of Canada - Stephen Garvey
Stephen Garvey of Alberta who now is living in Nova Scotia is the founder and leader of the National Citizens Alliance of Canada and the founder of the Foundation for Democratic Advancement.
Garvey describes himself as an author with a BA in Political Science from the University of British Columbia and an MA in Environment and Development from the University of Cambridge. He is also a former National Team Rower for Canada.
Garvey prides himself for confronting what he describes as mainstream political correctness. His primary election issues include healthcare access, tax reduction, the end of “replacement migration” and the restructuring of government.
Veterans Coalition of Canada – Jody O’Blenis
Jody O'Blenis of Amherst decided to run as the candidate for one of Canada’s newest political parties because he believes Canadians are tired of the same old promises from the same old political parties.
He has described the country’s health care and doctor shortages as a “crisis” situation and believes seniors are frustrated in their belief that no one seems to be working for them regarding the Canada Pension Plan.
O’Blenis is a former member of the military who works at Novapet, a plastics recycling facility in Amherst.
He said his party believes strongly in honesty, integrity and truth, qualities he also represents.