On Monday, May 8th, Conservative leadership candidate, Pierre Lemieux, held an event at Victory Christian Centre (V.C.C.), on Alma Street in Port Perry, to inform card holding Conservative Party members, of his stances. The event was organized by Mr. Lemieux's campaign, which used the V.C.C. building as a venue. V.C.C. remains impartial, and encourages everyone to vote with their principles.
The bilingual Mr. Lemieux stressed he's an Ontario native, even though his name leads many to believe he is from Quebec.
Mr. Lemieux described his experience as follows, “I present myself and my service to you and to our country, in terms of 'thirty, twenty, ten'. So thirty years of service to my family... but I also offer you twenty years of service in the military... those were years where I learned a lot about leadership, and that's the kind of leadership I am bringing to this leadership race. And I served ten years as a member of parliament in an Ontario riding, right beside Ottawa... and I represented that riding for ten years. It's a riding that had very deep Liberal roots... the last time a Conservative was elected before me, in the vast majority of my riding, [was] 1882.”
At the event, Mr. Lemieux said, what sets him apart in this race is, “I'm pro-life, I am social conservative, I am pro-freedom of speech, and I am Canadian... and these are Canadian values.” He went on to reassure social conservatives they are not alone, “We have a rightful place in our Canadian society, and we absolutely have a rightful place in the Conservative Party of Canada.”
With 13 candidates in the running, it can be difficult to compare prospective leaders. Mr. Lemieux suggested voters choose two of their most important principles in this race, and evaluate the candidates based on those. Using the example of being pro-life, he said, “You will immediately go from 13 candidates to two.” Mr. Lemieux, and Brad Trost, are the only two candidates to declare a clear pro-life stance so far.
When asked by an audience member, if Mr. Lemieux would endorse a second choice for leadership, after himself, he responded, “I've said to every candidate, what you need to do, if you want to win the second place on the ballot of the people that vote for me, you need to talk their language. You need to reach out to them and pull them in to you, not have me try to push them over to you. You go and win their hearts and minds.”