Top News

EDITORIAL: Zann will effectively represent Cumberland-Colchester

Following her election win, Lenore Zann addressed supporters at her campaign headquarters in Truro.
Following her election win, Lenore Zann addressed supporters at her campaign headquarters in Truro. - Lynn Curwin

When Cumberland-Colchester voters went to the polls on Oct. 21 to vote in the federal election they faced a tough choice.

With longtime politician Bill Casey retiring, they could go back to Conservative Scott Armstrong, who served the riding well as MP from 2009 until 2016 when he was defeated in Casey’s political comeback, or they could choose Liberal Lenore Zann, who more than capably served the people of Truro-Bible Hill as an NDP MLA for 10 years.

In the end, they chose Zann. But it was close, probably one of the closest elections in Cumberland-Colchester dating back to federal votes 30 to 40 years ago when Casey was first elected in the 1988 ‘free-trade election’ and a couple of times when Robert Coates narrowly held the seat for the Progressive Conservatives.

It’s a credit to all candidates — save one —for presenting in a positive manner their party’s platforms and what they stood for individually. Unlike the national campaign, things were very civil in this riding. People, for the most part, respected each other’s political differences, even if there was spirited – and sometimes ridiculous social media debate which included people being unfollowed and hurt feelings.

Fact is, when the sun rose on Oct. 22 Lenore Zann was our MP and will be until the federal Liberal minority either falls or pulls the plug on itself — something that won’t happen for at least two years.

Under both Armstrong and Casey, Cumberland County has been well represented. Both put the needs and wishes of their constituents first and there is little doubt Zann will do the same. Several times during the campaign, her supporters talked about how Lenore is a ‘people person’ and how she always put her constituents wishes and concerns before her own.

Now she will be tested. She’s heading into a Parliament that’s divided, just as our country is with a mostly Conservative west, except for British Columbia; a Liberal east, a resurgent Bloc Quebecois in Quebec, and Ontario where the Liberals won most urban seats around Toronto and the Conservatives most of the rural ones.

Fortunately, Zann is an experienced politician. She is no rookie when it comes to dealing with tough issues. She did it as a member of the NDP caucus under Darrell Dexter and in opposition under Gary Burrill.

Hopefully, she can carry on the legacy of not only Casey, but also Armstrong. Both worked hard in the constituency on projects like Beaubassin, the Cliffs of Fundy Aspiring Geopark, Advocate seawall replacement and recognition of Debert as one of the oldest — if not the oldest — Indigenous settlements in Canada.

At the same time, as we look ahead to Zann’s representation in Ottawa, we also have to look back at both Casey and Armstrong. Casey is retiring and it’s unknown if Armstrong will take another crack at federal politics. Both have served us well and deserve congratulations.

Moving forward, we will be well represented and as it was often said during the election campaign, ‘Yes We Zann.’

Recent Stories