TRURO – The election battle is heating up in Colchester North.
PC candidate John MacDonald is asking fellow candidates to support his call for legislation requiring a byelection if MLAs cross the floor, or change parties, between elections.
“Karen did it,” said MacDonald, referring to Colchester North MLA and Liberal candidate Karen Casey. “I have concerns … a voter thinks about the party, platform, leader and candidate they want. If (an elected representative) crosses the floor they now work different from the party, platform, leader and candidate that the constituents voted for. The constituents should determine it … it’s their right.”
MacDonald said he “feels strongly” about introducing such legislation, if he were to become MLA, and insists changing political affiliation in between elections is something he wouldn’t do. He added he spoke with PC Party Leader Jamie Baillie “a few months” ago and received his support regarding this issue.
In response, Casey told the Truro Daily News she did not contradict anything in the Nova Scotia Elections Act when she left the PC Party for the Liberals in 2011.
“You have to feel you are respected and your voice is being heard and when those were gone and they were…” it was time for change, Casey said, adding she received strong support from the area’s constituents.
“I had many, many calls from people who said, ‘we support you.’”
Casey, too, believes the role of constituents is vital.
“People vote for me, not the party … and in (the past) many voted for me because of my reputation,” she said.
The provincial election will take place on Oct. 8. The third candidate in Colchester North is NDP representative Jim Wyatt.