Don Abel chosen NDP candidate for provincial election 0
The New Democratic Party candidate for Haliburton-Kawartha Lakes-Brock is continuing his "active" and "avid" support of a party that first captured him during a high school mock election in the early 1960s.
The NDP was only three years old when Don Abel was first exposed to it and he has been hooked ever since.
On Saturday, June 11 Abel won a first ballot victory over Frank Mizzi and James Mulhern to carry the orange into battle against Liberal incumbent Rick Johnson and PC candidate Laurie Scott.
"Oct. 6 is going to be a perfect opportunity for the people of Ontario, an opportunity to select a government that will shift from a government that ... has taken unfair taxes and allowed unfair corporate tax deductions. We have to shift that to get our economy back on its feet," Abel said in his acceptance speech to about 45 party faithful gathered at the Royal Canadian Legion in Lindsay.
Abel said he is an NDPer because the party believes in a mix of public, private and cooperative economic opportunities, social services, publicly funded health care, education and welfare and the right of people to organize in the workplace and voice their opinions.
He said the 1995 Mike Harris Common Sense Revolution - which after eight years "soured" - was reflected in PC leader Tim Hudak's campaign.
For example, a promise to eliminate the hydro debt retirement charge would cost the treasury $1.2 billion so "they're buying our votes with our own money. History is repeating itself," he said.
He said the Liberals were elected in 2003 on a promise of no taxes but ushered in eco-fees, OHIP premiums and the HST.
He also accused Premier Dalton McGuinty of flip-flopping on everything from mixed martial arts to online gambling.
We used to be a province with a sound manufacturing industry based on cheap electricity, forestry in Northern Ontario and growing fruit in the Niagara and all of that is gone.
There is an opportunity to elect an NDP government "to get things back on course," he said.
"I want to help to improve the condition of the province of Ontario and form the second NDP government in the province's history."
Abel is a former NDP MPP for the riding of Wentworth North. During his tenure in the Ontario Legislature, he was deputy chief government whip, government caucus personnel committee chairperson, sat as a member of the standing committees on general government, regulations and private bills, finance and economic affairs, estimates and the standing committee on the ombudsman. He is currently employed as the senior licensing officer for the City of Kawartha Lakes.