Because of scheduling conflict
Jamie Baillie will not be attending a student political forum at Parrsboro Regional High School on Wednesday.
© Christopher Gooding - Cumberlandnewsnow.com
Jamie Baillie, shown during a recent campaign stop in Oxford, is unable to participate in a student forum on Wednesday at Parrsboro Regional High School.
HALIFAX – Jamie Baillie will not be attending a student political forum at Parrsboro Regional High School on Wednesday.
But the PC Party leader and Cumberland South candidate said it’s for a much different reason that what he chastised a Halifax area Liberal candidate for doing earlier this week when he called a similar event at Sir John A. Macdonald High School a waste of time.
“I’d love to be there, but I have conflicting appointments. I have been in every school in Cumberland South all the time and attended all kinds of graduations with the same message – it’s important for young people to take an interest in their community and get involved in politics,” Baillie said Tuesday. “To me, it’s the exact opposite of the Liberal candidate who said it was a waste of time.”
Earlier Tuesday, the Tory leader called on Chester-St. Margaret’s Liberal candidate Tim Harris to apologize to high school students he dismissed as being a waste of his time following a forum at the Upper Tantallon school.
Baillie said Harris’ remarks are troubling and represent the exact opposite of the type of message that should be said to any Nova Scotian, let alone youth who are interested in the political process.
“How can we encourage young people to take more of an interest in something important like politics if those who want to be their MLA think listening to their concerns is a waste of time?” asked Baillie.
The Conservative candidate said he has been asked to provide a video message and he will be doing that.
Baillie added he has lobbied the government on behalf of students in Cumberland South, including the stalled River Hebert school project, to get the Springhill gym expansion completed and to keep Wentworth’s elementary school open.
Baillie was invited to participate in a forum at the Parrsboro high school, but he is scheduled to be at a series of events in Halifax, Bridgetown and Digby.
He was also invited to attend another forum at Ship’s Company Theatre in Parrsboro on Wednesday night, but will not be able to attend since his last appointment is at 3:45 p.m. in Digby.
Baillie said the original date given for the candidates' forum was Oct. 1, the same night as the televised leaders' debate on CTV. By the time Wednesday was proposed his schedule was already completed.
"I am not afraid of a debate, in fact I have participated in four of them against Mr. McNeil and Mr. Dexter and representing the people of Cumberland South in every one of them," Baillie said.