Thursday, September 15, 2011

No McKenna lawn sign for me

981c95b8434d9c9fc19f54a52a41 Burlington’s PC candidate Jane McKenna | Photo: Graham Paine - Metroland West Media Group
There are some political campaigns that get off to a slow start then go steadily downhill from there. Let’s hope the Progressive Conservative’s Ontario campaign for the Burlington riding is not one of those. Given recent events, however, I fear such hope may be forlorn.

In the furore following Dalton McGuinty’s affirmative action proposal to move new immigrants to the front of the job-seeking lines, possibly at the expense of many of the 550,000 Ontarians who are unemployed, PC candidate Jane McKenna flubbed her lines when she told the Burlington Post, “When did we become for immigrants?”

Of course, Ms. McKenna has since issued a statement, in which she explains, “In an Inside Halton article a quote was attributed to me that does not accurately reflect my views or those of my Party.”

But if the quote does not reflect her views or that of her party, why did she utter the words? Was she misquoted? It doesn’t seem so. Ms. McKenna’s statement concluded with, “I hope this clarifies my position and regret any confusion this may have caused.”

Sadly, her statement clarifies nothing for she does not explain what she meant by her words, though, she did seem to be correcting herself when she explained:

“The PC Party of Ontario and I welcome new Canadians to Ontario. We believe however that Dalton McGuinty’s affirmative action program is wrong. We have 550,000 Ontarians who are unemployed and yet the Liberals want to pay $10,000 each to hire foreign workers.”

I whole heartedly agree with her sentiments, i.e., that affirmative actions are wrongheaded and patently unfair for they discriminate against those they exclude. This is especially so when those who are excluded are hardworking Canadians, many of whom have paid taxes for decades.

But I cannot for the life of me get over McKenna’s original statement in which she asks, “When did we become for immigrants?” Hasn’t Canada and the PC party always been for immigrants? Are we not, in fact, a nation of immigrants? So, why ask such a provocative question?

As I have said before, an indispensible benefit of a riding nomination contest is the need for candidates to go through a mini-campaign, during which riding association members can assess, among other things, each candidate’s ability to communicate effectively. And, with luck, the candidate’s core values and beliefs may also be revealed.

Jane McKenna was acclaimed as the Burlington PC candidate. So just how much about her communications skills and core values and beliefs have we missed? Time, I suppose, will tell. In all conscience, however, as an immigrant myself there is no way I will display this candidate’s campaign sign on my lawn. And, sadly, this is the first time in some forty years I’ve not had a sign to support my local representative.

There’s still half an election to go, and time to win disaffected voters, especially since we’re not exactly blessed with much of an alternative and are faced with the unpleasant prospect of four more years of McGuinty, his lies and his broken promises.



© Russell G. Campbell, 2011.
All rights reserved.
The views I express on this blog are my own and do not necessarily represent the views or positions of political parties, institutions or organizations with which I am associated.


  1. Of course you're right and it's unfortunate. The question was, quoting, "when did we become for immigrants?" When it's established we value our immigrants, their credentials and recognize their new citizenship as equal to naturalized citizens.

    She's clearly unqualified to represent the constituency.

    Mr. Campbell the constituency in the majority is leaning PC and maybe citizens can confirm this in press reports far and wide.

    Canada's present economic status and acclaims under Tory good management by PM Harper and Minister Flaherty's efforts can't or shouldn't be compromised by such ill informed and obviously defaced, unreflective values as demonstrated by the above statement.

    You've covered the incident for the information showing your principled stance is right.

    These gaffes and miscommunications are more than unfortunate as Birlington is a prominent community and its people sure wouldn't think along those lines.

    Where was her head?

  2. As you were a former CEO, CIO you might consider promoting a long talked about initiative in answer to possible degrading financial circumstances if Canada is affected by a double dip as suggested by Scotia Bank, et. al.

    The concept of 'job sharing' mentioned last night by Sir Richard Branson of Virgin airlines. It was predicted at the start of the internet, IT technologies and could be more than a starter initiative in answer to more job losses.

  3. How many generations do you require before you consider someone a hard working Canadian?

  4. The thought of having Jane McKenna represent the interests of Burlington at Queen's Park is a scary one!

    Ms. McKenna is in way over her head! She doesn't say much, and what she does say; seems to come out of her mouth without thinking first?!?!

    "Since when have we been for immigrants" Since when have we not? Burlington, Ontario, and Canada as a whole have been built on the backs and shoulders of immigrants!! My parents were immigrants? Where did Jane's parents come from? A very ignorant comment indeed!!

    The latest display of ignorance on the part of Burlington's PC Candidate was a quote in today's Post...."Queen's park isn't meant to be all lawyers, it's for what's real?" I guess she believes that we would be better served by a last place finisher in a Municipal Election and the CEO of a failed dating service?!?!

    What I would like to know is this -exactly what kind of community service, volunteer, and leadership positions has this candidate held? What kinds of jobs has she had? Has she been able to keep a job for a long period of time?

    What qualifies her - specifically -for this significant undertaking?

    If this were a job interview - I would be taking a pass.......

  5. Perhaps Mrs. McKenna should have an intelligent interpreter stand by her side to instantly correct her verbal “faux pas”. Her latest comment: “Queen’s Park isn’t meant to be all lawyers, it’s for what’s real” reminds me of something that comedienne Tina Fey wrote in her recent bestseller: “Politics and prostitution have to be the only jobs where inexperience is considered a virtue. In what other profession would you brag about not knowing stuff? “I’m not one of those fancy Harvard heart surgeons. I’m just an unlicensed plumber with a dream and I’d like to cut your chest open.” The crowd cheers..."