On Monday, Jan. 5, Brock’s Campus Conservatives hosted PC leadership candidate Monte McNaughton who gave a short town hall meeting on the 13th floor of the Schmon Tower.
McNaughton, MPP Lambton – Kent – Middlesex, spoke about how within the party, there are factions hoping to reach out with big government programs as a method of enticing voters to vote Progressive Conservative (PC).
“I would like to move away from the liberal approach within the party. I offer a conservative alternative, which focuses on free market values. The province already has one liberal party, we really don’t need another,” said McNaughton.
He talked about the sitting government in several capacities, first describing how at Queens Park, the Liberals presented a potential bill hoping to ban ride-sharing programs such as UBER, which would protect taxi monopolies, which is positioned in contrast to McNaughton’s free market political approach.
“I believe we should encourage an atmosphere for new and innovative companies to grow and develop, we need more companies to promote travel and commerce in the province,” McNaughton said.
Moreover, speaking on Wynne’s new sex-ed curriculum, McNaughton believes that, “parents deserve to know what is being taught at their children’s schools and are afraid of what their children will be learning [as of] September 2015”.
Later in the evening, the question period opened up to the gallery. One Brock University undergraduate student posed a question regarding the private sector having a role in the healthcare industry and how McNaughton viewed that role.
“Private services are inevitable but most can be covered by OHIP, the current system is unsustainable,” said McNaughton in response.
In regards to how he would approach private sector healthcare in a leadership capacity, he stated that it “would step on the gas a little harder than current liberal government”.
Another question that was posed to the MPP, “What contributes to having a electable leader in Ontario?”, to which McNaughton spoke at length on leadership which reaches out to a wide variety of people.
“It would take a full three years to develop a comprehensive, constituent influenced platform,” said McNaughton. “A leadership race is a good opportunity to be yourself and that will show through your future policy”.
In affirming the need for reformation within his party, McNaughton states, “if [a candidate] has lost the last four elections, they’re gone”, clearly expressing the need for a fresh start for the Ontario PC party and its identity.
McNaughton attended Westervelt College in London then later attended Western University’s Ivey Business School. This past summer McNaughton and his family visited 66 ridings and attended 134 events to meet the constituents that he hopes to represent as leader of the Ontario PC party following the resignation of former party leader Tim Hudak.
The Brock Campus Conservatives will be hosting other leadership hopefuls Vic Fidelli on Jan. 12, and Lisa McLeod on Jan.19 on the 13th floor of the Schmon Tower. To stay up-to-date on their updates, follow their Twitter feed @BrockTories
*** Antonio Sergi is a is a BUSAC councillor and member of Senate.