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Orléans Ward
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(Posted 7 a.m., Aug. 3)
Harper makes election stop at Orléans bakery

By Fred Sherwin
Orléans Online

Conservative leader Stephen Harper introduces himself to the owners and staff at Bakery Royal Delices shortly after calling for an Oct. 19 General Election. Fred Sherwin/Photo

Shortly after calling on Gov.-Gen. David Johnston to dissolve Parliament Sunday morning, Conservative leader Stephen Harper made a side trip to Orléans while on his way to a rally in Montreal.

Accompanied by local incumbent Royal Galipeau, Harper stopped by the Delice Royal Bakery at Trim and Watters to meet the owners and take away a few treats for the trip.

The detour on the opening day of the election campaign is a clear indication of how important the Conservative Party feels the local riding is to their chances of winning another majority government.

The riding is being contested by Liberal nominee and Justin Trudeau confidante Andrew Leslie.

The former Lt. Gen. won the nomination by acclamation after former MP Gar Knutson dropped out of the race over Trudeau's pro-life stance on the abortion issue, and David Bertschi had his nomination papers revoked by the party's leadership in a highly controversial move that drove a wedge between local Liberal supporters.

This will be Galipeau's fourth campaign since first getting elected to Parliament in 2006. That year he beat Liberal incumbent Marc Godbout by 1,200 votes. He would win the rematch two years later by 4,000 votes, and beat Bertschi by the same margin in 2011.

The 68-year-old former Gloucester city councillor underwent treatment for multiple myeloma, a common form of blood cancer, over a year ago. His blood levels have been back to normal for several months now and he is ready to take on the rigors of another election campaign.

"I feel in great shape and I look forward to continuing to meet the people of Orléans and to hear their views, as I've done since 2006," says Galipeau. "As always, I will continue my work to bring LRT to Orléans with Mayor Watson and Transit Commission Chair Stephen Blais."

As someone who makes an effort to split his time between his parliamentary duties and attending to matters in his riding, Galipeau is widely regarded as a populist MP. He has never missed a vote in the House of Commons and he can usually be found at three or four functions every weekend.

Leslie has been visible in the riding as well. He launched his campaign shortly after opening his campaign office in January. During the past six months, he and his team of volunteers have knocked on every door in the riding and met thousands of area residents.

"Our team as already running hard and the response has been great," says Leslie, adding that the feedback he has so far received has been mostly positive with an anti-Harper government slant. "The residents of Orléans are speaking clearly and loudly: They've had enough of this tired, scandal-plagued government."

The NDP candidate is Nancy Temblay, an environmental scientist who owns a farm and large equestrian operation in Carlsbad Springs with her husband Scott. She is a founding member of the Orléans NDP Riding Association and she is the aboriginal representative with the party’s Eastern Ontario caucus

(This story was made possible thanks to the generous support of our local business partners.)

 

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Posted Jan. 12



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