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Yellowhead Votes 2019

Two Yellowhead riding candidates – Douglas Galavan of the People’s Party of Canada and Gerald Soroka of the Conservative Party – participated in the candidates forum hosted by the Hinton and District Chamber of Commerce on Sept. 30. TheVoice is publishing responses to various public questions posed at the forum.


Question: I have some concerns, both of you are speaking from fiscal conservatism, and I’m not opposed to those types of statements. Unfortunately, the low hanging fruit tends to be education, social programs, and national defence, where do you sit on those programs?

Gerald Soroka:
That’s one of the things that we have talked about, that we are going to continue to commit to everything that is currently in the works. And I have to admit, we are not looking at balancing the budget for probably four to five year, because of the way the Liberals have spent already. Anything that we are proposing is currently already funded, because that’s a standard practice. When it comes to healthcare, it’s about 55 billion dollars in transfer payments to the provinces for health services and the social programs. We’re not only committing to that but we’re also increasing by three per cent per year. When it comes to our military, we’re also increasing funding there, and any types of increases we’re doing will have to be done with any savings we have as well as getting our economy back in line again. Once we have our economy firing, we’re able then to bring in more money and that’s where we’re offsetting a lot of the expenses as well as the corporate bailouts, the one and a half billion dollars. We’re able to save money from that and that’s going to go towards a lot of these programs. 

Doug Galavan:
Again, they are close. They’re just not limiting their corporate welfare basically to zero. They still want to be able to do their little niche thing here and there and we say no to all of that. We do intend to properly fund our military and we also intend to secure our borders. We’re going to cut immigration, there’s going to be some savings there. And of course, we’re cutting all foreign aid except for anything like a catastrophe. We’re not inhuman, we’re just not building pipelines in China and we’re not going to build roads in Africa. It’s not our job.


Question: We see the Supreme Court and other courts in Canada take a more progressive approach towards interpreting the constitution and legislating laws. What is your party’s expectation for removing the legislation power away from the courts and taking it back to Parliament?

Doug Galavan: 
When it comes to the courts, there’s now this movement within the universities and the profs and the legal system, where judges actually take pride in the fact that they are now writing law in our country. It’s insane, their job was to interpret the law and apply the law. It’s parliament’s job to write the laws. If there’s a problem and it bounces against the supreme court and it kicks back because the law doesn’t meet the constitution, that’s one thing. But that’s not what’s happening anymore, they want to write law. They’re proud of it. This is a progressive movement that’s poured out of the universities and it’s affecting all sorts of things across our country. It’s affecting our school systems, that’s why the kids are being taught about climate emergency, that’s why they’re being taught about gender fluidity in our schools. It’s time to push back, that’s why the PPC exists.

Gerald Soroka: 
As far as I know, we don’t have a policy on this yet, so I’ll go out on a limb myself. I’m not too far off from Douglas, we’re still a conservative party, and that’s one of the things we have this terminology called presidence. I think that’s something that Douglas said they start interpreting what it should be, and they don’t really look at it realistically. They know they can push the boundary a bit more because all laws come from pre-existing laws. So if you push the scale a little further and a little further and a little further, you are so far from the original intent of that law and that’s where I think we have such liberal mechanisms. I don’t mean liberal in the party sense, but I’m talking about our laws in general. We talk about criminals, it’s almost like we now are at a stage where we’ve accepted criminals as a legal occupation and they have the right to now come and break into your house and you better not stop them unless you’re personally at harm. But if they’re stealing your quad outside, you can’t stop them. Do you see where we’ve gone already? That’s one of my concerns about this as well. The fact that we need to start strengthening our laws back again. So to leave it in the hands of the judges, I’m a little concerned about that. That’s where I think we need to get back to common sense and bring it back to parliament to strengthen our laws. 


Question: What is your party’s view on the federal government relationship with our indigenous peoples and what you intend to do to try and promote that and address the recommendations that came out of that commission?

Doug Galavan:
We’ve actually laid out in our platform that we want to open up the Indian Affairs Act. They’re constantly losing ground and until we fix some of the fundamental problems, you can do all the commissions you want, you can tweak, you can do all these things, when they do these commissions they’re going in with these social justice warrior views. They’re not fixing the underlying problems. That’s why we want to open up the indian affairs act, and we know this is ground that is taboo, but something has to be done. You can’t have a segment of your population living in a complete socialist world and expect good outcomes. Until you open that up, until you address that, and give them the ability to self determine as individuals not as identity groups, we are going to have continued problems. And it’s going to be a tough one, because there’s a whole lot of history in there. But that’s the only way forward. Those reports can come out a thousand ways to Sunday, nothing will change, they’ve been doing them for decades.

Gerald Soroka:
The conservative platform is that the conservative party supports the reconciliation process with indigenous peoples. We are focused on forward policies that make real and measurable improvements in the lives of Canadian indigenous peoples. We support effective investments in important areas such as access to housing, health services, and good quality drinking water. It is critical that good government spending translates into meaningful results on the ground. There can be no true lasting reconciliation without economic reconciliation. The government must act to empower indigenous communities to share in the wealth that Canada is so capable of creating. It’s time we work together to create a positive future for indigenous youths, including increasing economic and educational opportunities.