By Stephen Dafoe
About a week into the municipal campaign period, a friend of mine made the statement that not many candidates had their signs up yet. My response was that it didn’t matter which horse got out of the gate first. What mattered was who crossed the finish line first. The same thing applies to municipal politics.
But that was back in September. We’re already four days into October, which leaves exactly two weeks for candidates to get their message out to the voting public.
Many candidates now have their signs driven into the ground around town and one even decided to run between towns with friends, each bearing the candidate’s campaign message on their clothing, a green and alternative way to get the message out. Some have distributed their flyers and brochures by mail or door to door, the latter group taking the face-to-face time as their opportunity to find out what the issues of the day are from the people who will ultimately elect or reject them at the polls.
And in this venue, just over half of the 15 candidates running for mayor, council or school trustee in Morinville have taken advantage (to varying degrees) of the public forum MorinvilleNews.com has given them to answer our reader’s questions right here.
We’ve taken in 13 questions from readers over the past week and eight of the 15 candidates have taken time to answer those questions they felt applied to them.
Both mayoral candidates, Lloyd Bertschi and Joseph Trapani, have given our readers long and thoughtful replies, as have council candidates Nichole Boutestein, Lisa Holmes, Kerry Knight, Paul Krauskopf and Donna Phinney. Unfortunately, council candidates Gordon Boddez, Jackie Luker-Chevalier, David Pattison, Lucie Roy and Ben Van De Walle have not yet weighed in with answers to any of our reader’s questions. With respect to school trustees, although only one of the questions has been school board related, only Noreen Radford has answered that question, leaving voters with no commentary from Heather Thiessen or Lauri-Ann Turnbull.
All candidates were also invited to submit a guest editorial on themselves and their campaign. Thus far we have received submissions from Jackie Luker-Chevalier, Paul Krauskopf, David Pattison and Joseph Trapani, as well as from three candidates running for seats in Sturgeon County.
With 13 questions being asked in one week, it is clear there are issues this election that people want to hear candidate’s opinions and positions on. There is no obligation for a candidate to answer questions asked on a news site or to even go door to door talking to voters. But those who do give those of us who vote the information needed to make sure we tick the boxes beside the names of those we feel best able to lead this community for the next three years.
Morinville candidates will have two opportunities on two successive Wednesdays to answer voter questions and to get their message out. This Wednesday, Oct. 6, candidates have been invited to speak at the Chamber of Commerce Luncheon and take questions from local business owners. Then on Oct. 13, candidates are invited to attend a public forum at Smith Music, sponsored by Smith Music, MorinvilleNews.com and the Morinville Volunteer Fire Department.