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Stanton vows to vie for a fifth term in 2019

Long-time local MP, first elected in 2006, is gearing up for October's federal election
stanton 2018
Simcoe North MP Bruce Stanton says there is much to be proud of in 2018 and looks forward to seeking re-election in 2019. Dave Dawson/OrilliaMatters

Long-time Simcoe North MP Bruce Stanton looks back on 2018 as a season of accomplishment, but he admits he already has thought much about 2019.

That’s because it’s an election year: A federal election is looming Oct. 21 and Stanton has his sights set on earning a fifth straight term as this region’s representative in Ottawa.

“Election years always loom large in terms of your day-to-day activities and priorities,” Stanton told OrilliaMatters.

But that doesn’t mean he will shirk his riding responsibilities.

“First and foremost, I’ll still be attending to the questions, inquiries and issues that constituents bring to us every day, and in addition, devoting additional time to meeting constituents at their doors and readying our campaign team for the election,” said Stanton.

The Orillia native, who owned a resort prior to turning to politics full-time, says it’s “an amazing honour” to hold public office. And he loves it.

“I love the work and take inspiration from the people of this riding who, every day, go to work, provide for their families, courageously take risks to get ahead, confront illness, care for their family members, read, study, write, exercise, and volunteer their time and effort to community initiatives and causes,” said Stanton, who was first elected as the region’s MP in 2006.

“It may sound corny, but they’re the reason that when I get up in the morning, I remain energetic and eager to face the work and tasks that land on my desk,” said Stanton. “Like those before me, I am only here temporarily, but will work to ensure my term leaves a favourable impact on the people of my riding and, through my contributions in the House, upon the nation as a whole.”

There were several high points of 2018, said Stanton, winner of four straight federal elections following a successful stint as a Severn Township councillor.

He said he was thrilled to see “two colleagues” – Jill Dunlop and Doug Downey – elected to the Ontario Legislature.

He also lauded some big federal investments for the riding. Two of those featured more than $20 million in upgrades to the Trent-Severn Waterway in our region.

Stanton said the replacement of the 100-plus-year-old swing bridge at Hamlet, southeast of Sparrow Lake, and dam restoration at Port Severn at the mouth of the Severn River at Georgian Bay, are significant investments.

So, too, is the new funding for the Green Haven Women’s Shelter being built on Sundial Drive. Part of the funding for that project is through federal housing and social funding streams.

“I am optimistic (there will be more infrastructure investment) on the horizon in this area for Simcoe North,” said Stanton.

The long-time politician, who turned 61 last month, was also published in 2018.

“My article on a parallel chamber for the House of Commons was published in the Canadian Parliamentary Revue,” said Stanton of the publication for Commonwealth Parliamentary Association members that includes all provincial and territorial legislatures as well as the federal Parliament.

Stanton said “this will be the subject of a private member’s motion by a Liberal MP in 2019. It has to do with making more efficient use of MP’s time during sitting weeks and expanding opportunities for MPs to debate issues of relevance to their constituents.”

Another personal highlight was also bittersweet. Stanton is the deputy speaker of the House of Commons – a position he has held since December of 2015.

Thanks to that role, on Dec. 13, 2018, he presided over the final session of the House of Commons in Centre Block, which will not be used for more than 10 years as the building undergoes its most significant renovation in nearly 100 years.

But these days, Stanton is looking forward. He’s optimistic of a return to power for the PCs, under new leader Andrew Scheer.

“Our party’s convention in Halifax 2018 set the stage for the coming election in 2019 and challenging the sitting Liberals with our new leader, Andrew Scheer, at the helm,” said Stanton. “The platform will advance the Conservative contrast on issues that are on the minds of voters as we approach the election: reviving Canada’s energy sector (pipelines, regulations, environmental assessment processes), reducing carbon emissions without carbon taxes, bringing order and fairness to our immigration system, and balancing the budget, among other things.”

He knows it won’t be easy.

“I have faced very credible candidates in each of my last four elections and do not expect that to change,” said Stanton.

“If I win the confidence of voters again in 2019, I look forward to contributing in the House of Commons and making some inroads on issues that continue to demand federal action – the opioid crisis, reliable transportation link for Christian Island, restoration of the Champlain monument in Orillia, and dozens of active cases for individual constituents.”

Dave Dawson

About the Author: Dave Dawson

Dave Dawson is community editor of
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