Re: Or they might cancel the election next year?

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One of the greatest barriers to entering politics is the unknown – how do I get involved, what do I do as a volunteer, how do I become a candidate?

One of the greatest barriers to entering politics is the unknown – how do I get involved, what do I do as a volunteer, how do I become a candidate?
I was pleased to see a recent column in the Pontiac Journal speaking to the merits of candidates declaring their intent as we approach a Federal election in 2019, as the conversation it has started will shed some light on the unknown.
Politics should be accessible to any and everyone who is interested, but sometimes parties do make things tougher than they need to be. Not all parties allow local residents to even run for them.
The Conservatives and the NDP both have open nominations in place, but Justin Trudeau has a political loophole which allows his sitting MPs to easily avoid nomination challenges from local residents interested in running for office. This removes a level of accountability normally held by people outside of the Ottawa bubble. It entails fewer people involved in the political process, weakening our democracy.
Unlike our current MP, many Pontiac Liberals that ran for the 2015 nomination are not the fearful types when it comes to speaking out on issues (such as the nuclear dump being built upriver from our region). Our MP completely losing his voice when confronted with a problem of significance, is an issue we could partially mitigate through contested nomination challenges that would hold him to account at the Party level for his inaction.
Since I announced I would not be running in 2019 I’ve had discussions with several people interested in the Conservative nomination for Pontiac. I hope to have discussions with many more; simply put, the more people we get involved in our political system at any level, the better off we are. Thus, I wish my NDP
colleagues the best of luck in their candidate race – I hope a lot of their talented people come forward to run.
Conservative leader Andrew Scheer visited a number of spots in the Pontiac just recently in December, and we will be having Andrew, along with other prominent Conservatives, back here before long. 
I am a great supporter of grassroots politics, and believe that there is a lot of talent here that doesn’t yet know that they’d be a great fit to represent our region. I encourage everyone with even a small amount of curiosity regarding a run for federal office to give me a shout; I’ll help you in any way I can.

Benjamin Woodman
Gatineau