The Carillon Presents: Regina Candidates Cheat Sheet

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With voting starting tomorrow, you, reader of the Carillon, may still be pondering your vote. There are a lot of undecided folks out there!

In that vein, Carillon editor-in-chief John Cameron and incoming news editor Martin Weaver have getting in touch with candidates across the city over the last week, attempting to find out their positions on some issues that affect students. But mostly we wanted a way for you to get immediately familiar with who's going to be running in your riding.

We weren't able to get in touch with everyone, but we want to stress that it wasn't for lack of trying on both sides; printed below are those who we managed to get in touch with. There are still some outstanding emails, so feel free to check this page again if you haven't decided before you go to the polls to see if candidates you're considering have responded.


We asked each candidate five questions, all the same, and avoided doing follow-ups, in the interest of, mainly, time and space, and to ensure that we were giving all the candidates the same shake. The questions were:

1. What can your party do for students?

2. What will you personally do to lobby for Regina students?

3. What have you done this campain to try and reach out to the student population?

4. How will you ensure Saskatchewan gets fair representation in the house of commons?

5. What in your mind is the biggest issue this election?



WASCANA

Ian Shields (Conservative)

1.

The Conservative party is very interested in making sure that post-secondary education is completed so that we can have young men and women fill the jobs of tomorrow and keep the economy rolling. We take it very seriously and since we’ve come in we have targeted a few programs for students. For instance, there’s a program that is to do with your books, where you can get a tax cut for any of your books that you have to purchase while you’re a student. So there are a number of things that the Conservative government have done and will continue to do in order to help students be the best they can be and come out the other end being productive citizens in a vibrant economy.

2. Because the University of Regina is in the Wascana riding, I am extremely interested in ensuring that post-secondary students in the university achieve their highest possible goals, including the Aboriginal university. As far as advocating for university students, it is essential that we keep the First Nations University in fine shape and make sure that it governed in a proper fashion so the students can get the best education they can. Anything that comes up to do with universities, I will be very interested in making sure their needs are met.

3. I’ve done it in a very informal manner. As you know, I was at the debate that was held in Riddell [Centre] about two or three weeks ago. I am actually shocked at the number of young people who do not vote. I have voted since I was 18 years old and I just don’t understand why students and young people do not vote. To me it is something that is essential to do, and so when I’ve been out door-knocking, one of the things I particularly have done is when I meet young people, be they students or young people at work, I make a personal effort to have them vote. They’ve told me, “I don’t think my vote matters.” Well, let me tell you. Every vote matters. When you look back in the history of this country, some of our major politicians have become prime ministers with the difference of 25 votes. Pierre Trudeau is a good example. He became prime minister in the late sixties and when he ran for re-election in ’73, it was twenty-five votes that made him prime minister. That was all, in the entire country. So it is extremely important that students, young people, people who are no longer young, go out and vote. I can’t express it enough. Voting is very important.

4. When I’m elected and will be part of the, hopefully, the majority government that Stephen Harper is going to form, I believe Saskatchewan will be very well-represented in that government. As far as I’m concerned, it is absolutely important that we have a Harper majority government, which I will be part of, and I would be advocating for the people of Saskatchewan very strongly. Because the most important thing that we have to do is to keep a strong economy going and to continually keep watching out for trade agreements and the like because this nation and Saskatchewan in particular is a trading nation. So I’d be advocating for the trade agreements that the Conservative government has started, including agreements with India, the agreement with the European Union, in order to improve our standards of living and the economy in the next few years.

5. The biggest issue without doubt in my mind is the economy. Without a good economy, none of the social things can be done. Without a good economy, you can’t have good health care. Without a good economy, you can’t have good social services. Without a good economy, you cannot help the poor. Without a good economy, you can’t do anything. So it’s absolutely imperative that we continue to get the economy right, and if we can get the economy right, we can help people.

Bill Clary (Green)

Ralph Goodale (Liberal)

1. Well, the core of our platform is education, skills and learning. It’s the very heart of this thing we call the “Family Pack,” which includes our learning strategy, it includes better public pensions, it includes a fund to develop better early learning and childcare spaces, it includes a home renovations plan to make older homes more energy-efficient and save money for families as well as to save on greenhouse gas emissions, and it includes a plan to help those who are providing extra care in their own homes for sick and elderly relatives. But the core of it, the core of those five things, is the learning strategy, and there we have a proposal for a learning passport that would say to every young student while they’re still in high school, “You need a post-secondary education – that may be post-secondary, that may be technical school, it may be some other form of post-secondary education, but you need that for the success of the rest of your life and you need it to be a contributor the economy.” And accordingly, we’re going to provide $4,000 – $1,000 a year for four years – to help defray the cost of tuition and other expenses related to post-secondary education. And by the way, for young people that come from lower-income families, it would be $6,000 – $1,500 a year. But for the basic commitment, it’s $1,000 a year for four years.

2. I have had a long reputation of doing that already in relation to the universities in Saskatchewan in particular – working on better student facilities, like for example the Riddell Centre which was one of the Liberals’ first infrastructure projects back in the 1990s. So improving facilities at the universities, including giving you labs, computer systems, helping to pay for the indirect costs of research and so forth. But also things that go directly to the service of students, like facilities like the Riddell Centre. So that’s part of what I would do.



I would also continue my efforts to bolster student supports on all fronts – that would be bursaries, scholarships, improvements with respect to student loans, better debt relief measures, and of course the learning passport to ensure that every student in Saskatchewan has the opportunity to go on to post-secondary education. So on all of those fronts I will be vigorous in putting forward the case for students to the government of Canada, and I will maintain a very close dialogue with the student body at the University of Regina. I’ve had the privilege of doing that over the years in a close personal way. I’m on the campus frequently; I try my very best to stay in touch, in the old ways of just dropping in for coffee and in the new ways through social media, and I will continue to do that so that I’m aware of the issues and in a position to lobby hard to get results.

3. I’ve been on the campus several times, sometimes for formal meetings, like the debate that the students’ union sponsored, and other times just walking through all the different buildings and facilities and cafeterias and studying areas and the library and so forth, and just being available and accessible, reaching out to students, asking them what their concerns are, their issues are. It hasn’t been just during the campaign. I go down on a regular basis between elections. And the idea of the learning passport actually came from those sorts of encounters with students at this university and elsewhere in the past. I’ve also tried to connect through the social media – Facebook and Twitter – and we held, about halfway through the campaign, a “tweet-up,” one night. We publicized that we’d be having a “tweet-up” on the Internet, and in the space of one hour – actually, a little less than an hour, fifty-five minutes – we had sixty-three questions and answers. That was a pretty brisk pace. We got through them all. But that was primarily involving students. There were some other people, obviously, participating from across the province and across the country, but many of the participants that night were students. I’ve tried to connect in every way that’s possible and it’s been a very exciting, rewarding experience.

4. You’ve gotta be prepared to stand up and speak out for the province. That’s one of my very serious concerns about the Harper government’s approach. They have an absolute obsession with controlling the message, and Mr. Harper has shown a tendency in the past to shut down anything he can’t control. You can see that in the way he operates his election campaign. He’s traveling around the country in a sanitized bubble, he never really encounters real Canadians, he only takes five questions a day from the media. If someone turns up at a meeting with a picture of Michael Ignatieff on their Facebook, they’re thrown out of the meeting. A veteran had a question about how badly veterans were being treated by this government and the veteran was shut down. Students in Guelph were trying to vote – completely within the rules provided by Elections Canada – and some heavy-handed lawyer from the Conservative party tried to take away their franchise. That obsession with control and that mistrust of democracy, which is so evident in the way the Harper government behaves, is a dangerous thing for the future of this country. What I will do is what I have always, throughout my career, tried to do, and that is stand up and speak out on behalf of what Saskatchewan people feel, want, and believe.

And I guess the classic example of that, John, was last year in the debate about potash. The result there was so obvious: Saskatchewan was saying, with an overwhelming majority, that the answer to that question needed to be “no.” That the foreign takeover of Saskatchewan’s potash industry should not be allowed. And I led the fight in the House of Commons to persuade the government to that point of view. There was not one single Conservative that even participated in the debate. They were totally AWOL, totally silent. When the chips were down on the most important economic question facing Saskatchewan in a generation, these guys went AWOL. They just went AWOL. And that’s not good enough. You’ve got to have the courage and the gumption and the ability to stand up and speak out when it counts.

5. It’s difficult to really pick one, because there are several really critical ones. I think at a very broad level, restoring the health and the integrity of Canadian democracy is an overriding issue. You think back to all of the abuses. Prorogation twice within the space of one year. Parliamentary watchdogs like the nuclear safety commissioner and the veterans’ ombudsman and the chief electoral officer and the RCMP complaints commission and the military police complaints commission and the access to information commissioner – all of those people coming under brutal attack by the Harper regime. And then their behaviour during this election campaign; the fact that this campaign started over the issue of contempt, where Parliament was asking for basic information about the jets and the jails and the extra corporate tax cuts, so it could make an intelligent vote on the budget, and the government simply thumbed their nose at parliamentarians saying, “We need this information.” It’s that eroding of Canadian democracy that is the most dangerous thing for the long term. I don’t know whether you saw it or not, but [on Thursday], Andrew Coyne, the executive editor of Maclean’s magazine, an arch-conservative, announced that he would be voting Liberal, because, he said, the single most dangerous thing in this country today is Harper’s disregard for democracy. So that’s probably the most overriding factor.

In terms of constituency issues that would be the single most important? There are three, it seems to me, that have to be pretty high on the priority list. One is the education funding that we talked about. Number two is affordable housing in Regina, and number three is the preservation of Medicare and the renegotiation of the financing of Canada’s health care system over the course of the next two years. Those three are more, I guess, practical bread-and-butter kinds of issues. But the defense of democracy and making sure that the rights and freedoms of Canadians are not trampled upon, that’s pretty serious stuff.

Mark Spooner (NDP)

1. I’m an associate professor at the University so I believe very strongly in student causes and I was a student representative in graduate school. I was vice president of the graduate student association for years at the University of Ottawa so I’m more acquainted with student issues. The one that I am most proud of is the NDP would make tuition affordable for everyone immediately giving 800 million dollars to the provinces in order to reduce tuition fees, lower tuition across the board, and also increase grants and increase tax deductions for tuition.

2. I was one of the faculty founders of RPIRG and I’ve worked closely with students on many initiatives. In fact, I think one of the great strengths of my campaign and me personally running is that I’m there all the time. I’ve been with the students since I got there in 2006 working alongside URSU government and more recently RPIRG so I’m not just here at election time.

3. What haven’t I done, let me tell you. I’ve participated in the debates on campus, I’ve worked closely – in factm I bet my campaign has more students working for it than any other. There’s a real youth movement  and youth feel to my campaign. I even employed Skype and other social media techniques to get the word out. Basically I’ve had an open door policy for people that want to come and learn, cause I’m learning too, so together we've sort of formed a learning community. So I’m very comfortable on my platform on student issues.

4. I think right now if you want representation in the House of Commons, you should be voting NDP because we will be in the very least the official opposition if not government, so our voice will be strong. My campaign has always said right from the beginning that I want to be Wascana’s voice to Ottawa rather than Ottawa’s voice to Wascana. If you've followed my career you’ll see that I’ve always spoken out loudly to injustices and things that I didn’t feel were right. You can count on me to be a voice. We’re quite fortunate because Wascana is the home to the U of R so you would have a very local representative in me.

5. 
The biggest issue this election is to fix Ottawa. For too long we’ve been told that we only have two choices: a Liberal or a Conservative. Now I think we have a third choice and a very strong one and that’s the NDP.


REGINA-QU'APPELLE

Andrew Scheer (Conservative)

1. Well, we’ve done a number of things to ensure that post-secondary education remains accessible for students. First and foremost is we made a pledge not to slash the transfer payments like the Liberals did back in the nineties. So to ensure that transfer payments remain strong so that provinces don’t have to cut back on services or hike tuition. Secondly, we’ve brought in a number of targeted tax credits, like a tax credit for tuition, books, bursaries and grants, things like that. And I would warn any students who’s looking at other parties’ platforms, in a lot of situations where other parties are making promises, if you read the fine print, they’re actually going to cancel some of the Conservative promises to help pay for it. It’s a bit of a shell game – they take with one hand and give with the other.

2. I’ll continue to advocate for stable transfer payments for the provinces so the provinces don’t have to hike tuition. I’m also a strong advocate for students for things like making sure student loans are accessible; sometimes we have individual students come into my office who need a little bit of flexibility when it comes to repayments or if they’ve had difficulty making their payments before it goes into default, working out payment plans and things like that, so I’ve been a strong advocate for students in my riding who need that kind of assistance.

3. Well, you know, I’ve tried to use social media. We have a Facebook site and a Twitter account. I also think it’s important to try and get young people involved at an early age, so I’ve done several presentations at high schools, so that people who are just leaving high school and potentially to university, even if they can’t vote, if you can plant the seeds early on, you keep them engaged as they go through their university careers. So I think that’s very important to do and as a candidate tried to do just that.

4. Right now the seats in the House of Commons are assigned based on population. The NDP want to give a set number of seats to Quebec regardless of population patterns in the rest of the country. But even though the lesser provinces are starting to grow quite quickly, they would actually restrict the number of new seats that Western Canada got in order to ensure that Quebec never loses any of its power in the House of Commons. I don’t think that’s democratic, so we’re going to stand up and fight against that and ensure that as provinces grow they get the new members of parliament that they deserve. In addition, our Conservative party is a strong believer in the rights of provinces, provincial jurisdiction, so we’re not going to impose a cap-and-trade scheme that would punish the province’s oil and gas sector, the natural resource sector. We believe that the province should be able to determine how to handle its own emissions systems and to be able to ensure that the Saskatchewan economy can continue to grow strong. We would respect that.

5. For me, it’s the economy. It’s ensuring that our growth continues. Young people at university or college need to have jobs to go to and if the NDP plan to impose a cap-and-trade scheme were enacted there just, quite frankly, wouldn’t be those jobs waiting for young people coming out of university. Those kinds of jobs are high-paying jobs that need skilled workers. They’re the kind of jobs that you can raise a family on. We believe that rather than punishing Saskatchewan’s natural resource sector, we have to keep taxes low in order to keep the economy strong.

Greg Chatterson (Green)

1. We’d like to see the student population be able to get through school without debilitating debt. We recognize that the students are the potential of our future prosperity in this country, and we should be encouraging that potential, not discouraging it by having debilitating debt by the time they get out of school. We should be trying to find better-cost housing, lower tuition fees, debt reductions in different ways. Actually, if you look at our policies on the matter at greenparty.ca, and look for Vision Green, there’s stuff on low-cost housing and different programs we’re proposing to get students through school with less debt and to just bring people into post-secondary education – even primary education – if they have that potential and they have that drive, we should be trying to exploit that potential as much as possible.

2. I’d promote these things. I’d try to get these things implemented so that students have more choice in what they want to take and to lower the cost of education, and to increase the job opportunities that are there for them once they get out.

3. We had a rally there at the university, and I thought it was quite a successful rally. We were in the hallway there at the Riddell Centre … I didn’t get over to the [vote mob]; I knew it was going on, but I had another forum at the time. But I do support them in that and I encourage them to get out and vote. The way things are going now, the way that the price of tuition and housing is, it’s getting to the point where only a select few are actually going to be able to get an education. Fewer and fewer people. They’re falling through the cracks, they can’t afford it. You get through high school, you get out on the rigs or something, all of a sudden you’re making half-decent money, and you’re looking at going to university and taking on a bunch of debt, well, the options are really lowered. You might not even agree with what’s going on on the rigs, especially, you know, something like that, where if you have some sort of environmental consciousness, then you probably wouldn’t, but that’s where the jobs are right now, out there on the oil patch. So we’d like to encourage people to meet that potential. And you got people meeting that potential, hell, they’re happier people, you know? You got happier people, you got a happier society.

4. It depends who you elect. As one independent Green member down there, if I’m elected, I would of course fight for representation in Saskatchewan, but if it’s Conservative party and I’m surrounded by Conservative members, that’s an uphill struggle. There’s a few things you can do but they can just shut you down so easily. I would certainly be taking a look at what avenues were accessible. I’ve never been to Parliament myself so I’m not sure how to really approach that, but I’m sure there’s answers there; it’s just that I’ve been making a living all my life and haven’t had enough chances to study Parliament procedure to actually give a distinct answer on that.

5. The biggest issue is our democracy. Well, there’s a couple of things – it’s the debt, that’s  a big one, but our democracy. Mr. Harper does not respect democracy. His government was brought down on an issue of contempt and ethics. It’s an issue of contempt and ethics. And the contempt is for Parliament; “contempt of Parliament” is how it was actually worded. Well, that means contempt of democracy and contempt for the people that are in that democracy. Which is all of us – the taxpayers, the students, everybody. Mr. Harper thinks that Parliament is actually an impedement to growth. And the only possible scenario in which he would think that way is if he feels that these corporations even have more power than Parliament. And if you look at what he’s doing, that’s what he’s working towards. Over the last three years, he’s dissolved or wiped out, done funding cuts quietly at agencies that make sure the democratic process it adhered to. One being Access to Information. He’s trying to undermine these things, and if he gets into it as a majority, the next four years, you won’t even know this country. It’ll be so much under the control of multinational corporations that it’ll be extremely difficult to take our democracy back – if we can. So I think that’s the major issue. We’ve got to get out there and protect our democracy.


The price of having a democracy, as you may have already noticed, is eternal vigilance. A lot of people have spilt their blood for this eternal vigilance, died for this eternal vigilance, because they believed that that was their duty to democracy. Well, we’re losing our democracy, and we’re going to be into a corporate dictatorship before too long, and you’ve got corporate dictatorships around the world already – they can’t exactly be called corporate dictatorships because they don’t really have the government, they just control the government. And in some of the places in South America and in Africa, if you get in the way of these multinational corporations, they just mow you down. They just send in the police force of the country they control, the police force gets paid a little more than the boys they’re mowing down, and they just go in there and mow them down.

So it’s our democracy, and we’re not that behind.

Jacqueline Miller (Liberal)

1. 
We have the Passport to Learning program which gives all students which gets the grades to go on to post secondary education: $1,000 for four years, or up to $15,00 depending on your family income. And that’s above and beyond any of the other student loan or student bursary program because we feel that education is of utmost importance when it comes to the future of the global economy. We want to make sure that all of our youth or anyone that want to attend post-secondary education, they have the opportunity to do so so we can compete in the global economy.

2. 
First of all, I am a U of R alumni, so I strongly believe in the University of Regina's programing. I’m also an alumni of the grad program as well. Whenever there are issues related to the University of Regina or First Nations University I will be there to support it. I think we have a fabulous program; so many times people look to larger campuses, but I think we have an incredible program delivery there. We have excellent professors and it’s a great university so I’m making a commitment on a personal level. But also the Liberal party candidates are there to support higher education. When there’s issues of debate around funding or programming or creating new departments, I will certainly be there to support that at the table in Ottawa.

3. I was there for a full day at the university. I took out a booth in the Lab Café, talking to students and shaking hands and just trying to encourage everyone to get out and voice their vote. I also attended a debate that the students' union held. I’ve been talking to younger students as well. I was out in White City and Balgonie, speaking with younger students. It's important to engage them at all levels but most importantly just make sure that youth understand the importance of voting.

4. That is really what my platform is all about, because currently we have several MPs or former MPs who have positions but they didn’t choose to speak up for Saskatchewan. One of the things that I’m looking at doing is instituting something I’m calling a "communications committee." By that, what I mean is that I’ll have people from within my constituency who I will email and be in contact with on a regular basis. I would email them and say, "Here are the issues we are going to be discussing. What is your perspective on these issues?" So that I really am having true representative democracy, so that I’m speaking for my constituents rather than just speaking for myself in the House. At the same time I’ve asked those 150 people to talk to about 10-15 people from within their community, their family, their neighbourhood, so that I really have a strong voice for my constituency.

5. When you go to the doors, there’s a lot of apathy. People don’t realize that it’s their democratic right. Democracy is all about a government for the people, by the people, and if we don’t step forward and vote then democracy isn’t being served well. I think obviously there’s several, there’s not only one. Obviously the economy is important, health care, education. But most importantly I guess watching is the flood waters right now. I’m just driving back from rural Saskatchewan and some of the roads are washed out, there’s farms that are flooded with no possibility of feeding, of haying this year. And First Nations communities are flooded out and their homes are flooded as well. The flood waters is definitely a huge issue in our riding.

Fred Clipsham (NDP)


REGINA-LUMSDEN-LAKE CENTRE

Tom Lukiwski (Conservative)

Billy Patterson (Green)

1. Green Party MPs will develop a youth community environment service course that will provide federal minimum wage employment for 40,000 youth aged 18-25 every year for four years, for a total of 150,000 youth positions. At the successful completion of each year-long program, there will be a $4000 tuition credit awarded to each participant that can be applied to further education and training youth service to uses of various size depending on the  project and will be given opportunities for career counselling and employment skills during the courses. Green Party MPs will ensure that youth community environment service course projects are developed in partnership with Green municipalities based on local priorities. They can include numerous managers to minimize damage and injury from future climate change impact,  specially focused teams to find social stimulation, to institutionalize towards music, assistance to low income households for energy efficient upgrades, recreation programs for children at risk, et cetera. There's a place for artists, musicians, there's a place for athletes – I'd say tree planting is like running a marathon everyday, because I've done it. Again this initiative will employ 160,000 youth over 4 years and we will spend $5 billion on that.

That's the main thing. The other is to make post-secondary education universally accessible so no one can not go to school for not being able to afford it. Just generally, the Greens would increase funding for public interest research, rather than cut funding and force the universities to rely on corporate research, which seems to be the trend now. It will give students more power to customize their degree program and those kind of things and to be able to really be entrepreneurs or pioneers in their field and not have to stick to something that is "profitable."

2. I am a Regina student. I will make an effort to listen to them and their needs, not just when I'm campaigning but when I'm elected. I will help them to have other options in environmental studies besides just carbon capture storage and nuclear, which seems to be the big push right now. It's unfortunate that they're forcing a lot of students to get a very limited scope if they want to do anything environmental right now in Saskatchewan. When we say "professional environmental services," that means toxic waste cleanup. We'd like to expand it to rehabilitation, protection of natural eco-systems. Like I said, give students the opportunity to pursue public interest endeavors rather than just [profitable] ones.

3. A new group signed up called UR Greens for students who specifically wanted to help with the Green Party. We had about two dozen of them; I connect with them. I have been on campus one time all day and other times just making an effort to appear and connect with students. But again, I still have a year left in my program and I still consider myself a student, so I'm certainly connected to them and their needs. I consider myself – compared to the average age of an MP or even the average age of the other opponents – to certainly be a young person and to be able to understand them at a level that those older MPs just can't. 

4. I wouldn't be afraid to speak out for Saskatchewan, for what's right. It's just crazy that our Conservative MPs have so little power to say or do anything for that matter. I think that's just ridiculous. I believe in public forums and referendums when necessary and really engaging the people and the democratic system rather than giving them opportunities to vote once every two to five years, and the first-past-the-post system, where the vote only counts if they vote for the winner and other votes just wasted. I really advocate for democratic reform, municipally, federally, and provincially, to allow every vote to matter. Some systems, you can vote for the party you would like, the values you agree with, the local MP, the prime minister you want to govern and – why not? – the senate, too. You would get four votes and they would all matter even if your local MP or party didn't win. You could make sure the popular vote counted. When we have mock elections in schools – like in Lumsden, where I spoke at, for example, to different kinds of students – there would be Green Party majority governments, with just high school and elementary school students voting. We found the same thing in Moose Jaw and all over so it's had a pretty powerful encouragement for us.  

5. I would get a public high-speed train between Regina and Saskatoon that would connect the two cities in a way that would connect the two into essentially a mega-city. You could work in either/or. It would provide a huge amount of jobs and also provide a sense of community in traveling that young people, like in Europe and other countries, have, but that is lacking here. Imagine if, when you went to Saskatoon, you could go onto – I even call it a "party train" – a train where there's tons of your peers and new people to meet. You can order food at a restaurant, you can drink alcohol or non-alcoholic drinks and sit in the sky car. It's something that is really lacking when you have a million cars zipping down between Regina and Saskatoon in usually single-occupancy vehicles. You only get two- or three-second flashes of people's faces when you're passing them. So I really think the train is my keystone issue because that would be really good for the economy, the environment and the society. That's the triple bottom line that encompasses all the Green Party seats.

I also think the focus on the economy that the Conservatives maintain as the big issue is really misleading. We Greens think that the gross domestic product and to measure progress as a whole based on the sum of all transactions really leaves out the environment and people, and that we need a genuine progress indicator because things like happiness and time spent with family and the health of the environment those things matter and they need to be economically modeled. 

Monica Lysack (Liberal)

1. That’s the best part of our platform. Our learning passport provides $1000 a year for 4 years or $1500 for lower income families to pay for tuition at any post-secondary institution, the university, SIAAST, any student that gets the grades gets that $1000 a year for 4 years.

2. One thing that comes to mind immediately is for Aboriginal students. We have a commitment to lift the two per cent cap on post secondary education. In addition to that I think there are many other things in the platform to support people in all kinds of different ways to make it more affordable.

3. One of my volunteers was heavily involved in the vote mob so I had a little bit of involvement with that. I’ve been doing a lot of social networking. I’ve had some of the younger volunteers helping me out with the social media campaign sending out text lists and tweets to lots of people.

4. At least two of my opponents in this riding are career politicians and have come up through their parties and have worked for their parties. I come from people first so I came into politics because of my work with people. I listen to thousands of people not just through this campaign but long before that. The works that I did on the ground, teaching at the university, teaching at SIAST, working with marginalised people – that’s the experience that I bring in. Being a grassroots candidate, people first and party second. I think that I will be able to represent those views in a much more unbiased way and I have a good record for getting things done and working together with other people so I will be able to stand strong for Saskatchewan unlike our current silent 13 that haven’t been up to the constituents.

5. Democracy. I’m hearing particularly from young people, from students this is something I think that have really motivated younger people that haven’t voted before. I’ve have many young people say "This is the first time I’ve voted, I’m motivated to do that because I’m fed up with a dictator-style government that shuts down Parliament every time it doesn’t get its way." It’s motivating them to get involved, and I think that it’s probable the most important issue above all of the platforms' ideas that are out there. It’s the thing that I hear about the most and a thing that people really care about. I think that Stephen Harper really underestimated the people, thinking that they didn’t care about their democracy. But I think that we’re gonna see on May 2 that people really do care about their democracy and they're going to vote accordingly.

Brian Sklar (NDP)


PALLISER

Ray Boughen (Conservative)

Larissa Shasko (Green)

Russell Collicott (Liberal)

Noah Evanchuk (NDP)

1. 
I also come from "Generation Tuition," and I know tuition fees are first and foremost on the minds of students. I’m still paying off my wife’s student loans so I’m mindful of that. I think what the federal government needs to be doing is putting in immediate cash injections into the provinces so that we can deal with skyrocketing tuition rates. The other parties talked about various schemes, but none of them would actually deal with the rising cost of tuition. What we’re calling for is an increased injection of cash that immediately gives $800 million to the provinces to be directed at tuition fees to, make sure that education is accessible and that its good quality.

2. 
The thing about students and their efforts to make sure that their voices are heard first and foremost is they're calling upon young people between the ages of 18 and up to get out and vote. There are over a million students in Canada, and if every one of those students voted, we would be able to deal with tuition fees and we would cap them right then and there and work on lowering them. What I’m proposing to students in both Regina and Moose Jaw is that I’m going to be a tireless voice for them. I’m only eight years out of university, so I’m mindful of the challenges that students are facing, and I’m gonna give it 110 per cent every day to make sure that life is more affordable for students.

3. Right now I’m holding an event for students at the SIAST campus in Moose Jaw. My campaign is social media-friendly; I’m on Twitter, I’m on Facebook, we held a flash mob just this morning in Regina. I’ve had members of the student community in Regina active and engaged in my campaign. All this is supposed to be fun. We don’t want to have a situation where young people are put in the position where they're licking envelopes and stuffing pamphlets. What I’m proposing to students and what I’ve done in my campaign is giving them key roles, organizational roles, policy roles, where they feel actively engaged and their having fun. This democracy stuff is supposed to be fun. The approach I take versus some of the other parties, in particular the Conservative party, is giving a real voice to students on my campaign and on the door steps.

4. 
For one thing, we talk about representation. We have to speak be outspoken, and the existing Member of Parliament for Palliser, Ray Boughen spoke the eighth fewest words of any Member of Parliament in the last session. I will be outspoken and I’m going to speak loud and clear for the people of Saskatchewan. We need to have an independent Saskatchewan voice, a voice that doesn’t take marching orders from the prime minister’s office and the spin doctors. I intend to be that strong voice and I’ll improve on what my Conservative opponent, Mr. Boughen, has failed at.

5. It’s hard to boil down the multitude of issues that people face. We’re talking about 70,000 people in the riding of Palliser. I think affordability is the number one issue but we also want to be careful not to ignore issues like our ecology and the environment, making sure that we’re dealing with climate change, that we’re dealing with student issues, we’re dealing with seniors issues and that moms and dads are looked after. It’s hard to separate one or the other but what I will say is that average everyday Canadians need to get a break. And they're not. I’m going to fight to make sure that it’s the people that are represented, not the banks and the multinationals.

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