by Deron Johnston
The Brockville Convention Centre was the scene, as Liberals far and wide gathered for the provincial riding association nomination meeting. As reported last week, Brockville Mayor David Henderson was the lone nominee and was acclaimed in front of a packed house and media that included CKWS TV, CTV, Your TV (Cogeco) and all of the regional newspapers.
Originally the meeting was supposed to start at 2 pm, but was delayed until Premier Kathleen Wynne arrived. It was a poorly kept secret that the Premier would be attending the meeting. Already travelling in Eastern Ontario, she said that it was important to stop and welcome David Henderson to the team and support his nomination. Upon arriving, the Premier greeted each person individually and the TV cameras pivoted to catch it all.
As for the nomination itself, riding association President, Greg Best, kicked off the meeting with a welcome to everyone and then handed the meeting over to Kemptville’s own Michaela Rutherford-Blouin, who was the chair of the nomination committee. Michaela introduced Josh Bennett, (who is the Mayor’s campaign manager) who spoke briefly, and then officially nominated him. Michaela then introduced Christine Milks (the candidate from the previous election) who said a few words and seconded the nomination.
The rest of the meeting was comprised of the Premier speaking about the coming election and how lucky the Liberal Party was to have such a high-profile candidate as David Henderson. To wrap up, David spoke about Pharmacare, the minimum wage, and free post-secondary tuition for low income students.
When the meeting ended, the Premier answered a number of media questions before moving on to her next appointment. David stayed to answer all questions before the media scrum broke up and departed. No doubt there will be plenty of questions for the candidate in the coming weeks.
With the recent controversial leadership contest for the Progressive Conservative Party now over, and Doug Ford at the helm as leader, this is turning out to be possibly the most interesting provincial election in a very long time.