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Press Conference – There is no vote split

Maxime Bernier, Winkler, June 2, 2023

We are halfway through this by-election campaign, and today I wanted to address the main concern that I hear from voters in Portage-Lisgar: The so-called “vote split” issue.

The vast majority of the voters in this riding are conservative minded.

At the 2021 election, the Conservative Party candidate, Candace Bergen, received 53% of the vote. Our PPC candidate, Solomon Wiebe, came in second place with 22%.

The Liberal and NDP candidates only received 11 and 13%.

It’s simply impossible for the Liberals or NDP to win this riding. It’s a two-horse race between the CPC candidate and me.

And the Conservatives are afraid to lose.

One indication of this is that Pierre Poilievre is in the riding today to support his candidate.

Another is that the Conservative Party has been posting ads online with all sorts of silly lies about me.

They don’t attack the PPC principles and policies, because they know they are very popular among their voting base.

I meet people every day here who say they agree that the People’s Party has the best platform and ideas.

They agree that the establishment parties have screwed up everything for decades.

They agree that we need radical change to save the Canada we love.

But… they also desperately want to get rid of Trudeau.

And they mistakenly believe that the only way to do this is to vote for the Conservative party, because if they vote for the People’s Party, they’re going to “split the vote”.

The Conservatives want everyone to believe this because it’s the only argument they have against us.

I want to tell the voters of Portage-Lisgar who are still unsure about supporting me on June 19 that this is just not true.

You’re not voting for the next government, but only for your local MP.

Whoever is elected here on June 19, there won’t be any change in Ottawa. Trudeau will still be Prime Minister after the by-election. The Liberals will still be able to govern with NDP support.

So why not use this opportunity to send a message to the establishment Conservatives, and tell them you’re not satisfied with what they have to offer?

The fake Conservatives didn’t speak up or do anything to fight covid mandates and passports for two years. Instead, Pierre Poilievre called on Trudeau to vaccinate everyone faster and spend more on covid handouts.

Tell them you want an MP who will stand up to defend our fundamental rights even when it’s not popular!

The fake Conservatives have done absolutely nothing to reopen the abortion debate. Pierre Poilievre has said that a Conservative government under him will not pass any law to restrict abortion.

Tell them you want an MP who won’t be afraid to reopen the debate on abortion!

The fake Conservatives are completely silent about the radical gender and trans ideology. They unanimously voted for Bill C-4 with the other parties to criminalize parents and counsellors who want to help confused children.

Tell them you want an MP who will fight this evil ideology, and protect women and children!

The fake Conservatives believe in the climate hysteria. In 2017, they all voted for a motion to support the UN’s Paris Accord, except me and one other Conservative MP (Cheryl Gallant). Instead of paying Trudeau’s carbon tax, Poilievre wants you to pay for subsidies to green energy.

Tell them you want an MP who rejects the climate hysteria and the globalist agenda!

The fake Conservatives support Trudeau’s mass immigration policies. They want to import the equivalent of Manitoba’s population every year, even though housing prices have become unaffordable everywhere.

Tell them you want an MP who will fight to sustainable and reasonable immigration!

Voting the same as you have always done won’t change anything.

You know that Pierre Poilievre and his 114 MPs will not fight for your values. One more silent coward who will toe the party line will not make any difference.

The Conservatives are taking your vote for granted, and they never deliver on your priorities.

In this by-election, they are running a candidate who not only believes in the Liberals’ radical climate agenda, but has been working with them to impose it on farmers as a lobbyist for the Grain Growers of Canada.

They’re laughing in your face!

The “split the vote” argument makes no sense, because the People’s Party and the Conservative Party are two very different parties, with different principles and policies, and a different approach to politics.

The Conservatives think they can be elected by pandering to big-city Liberals and agreeing with the Liberals on all the key issues. Then when they’re elected, they have no mandate for change.

I believe that the only way to advance conservative ideas is to defend them openly, with passion and conviction. We need to have these debates and convince more Canadians if we ever want to implement conservative policies.

I hope that there will be a public debate organized before the end of this campaign between me and the fake conservative candidate, so that the voters of Portage-Lisgar can see how very different our approaches and visions are.

If you vote for me on June 19, you won’t “split the vote”. On the contrary, you will elect an MP who shares your family values and will defend them in Ottawa.

Give me a chance to prove it to you. Send me to Ottawa as your representative, and allow me to shake the establishment consensus.

I will vote with the Conservatives when they support conservative policies. And I will denounce and shame them when they don’t.

I can be your insurance policy to ensure that real conservative ideas will be debated and promoted in Ottawa.

And if I don’t keep my word, then in two years you can vote me out.

Here in Portage-Lisgar, on June 19, you have a unique opportunity to positively influence Canada’s future. You could start a common-sense revolution that will reverberate across the country!

You have nothing to lose and everything to win. Don’t miss that chance!


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