Todd Hoffman announces PPC candidacy

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Maxime Bernier visits the Pontiac; Todd Hoffman announces PPC candidacy

Bonnie James
Local Journalism Initiative

CAMPBELL’S BAY – People’s Party of Canada (PPC) leader Maxime Bernier visited the Pontiac on June 6 to hold a town hall discussion on gun control and farming. The event was held at Brauwerk Hoffman.

Brewery owner Todd Hoffman opened the event by announcing his candidacy for the PPC in the Pontiac riding. An infantry veteran who served 7.5 years, Hoffman said he isn’t afraid to stand up and fight for the rights of Canadians. “We just want to live our lives out here. We don’t want to be infringed upon,” said Hoffman, who also serves as vice president of the Pontiac Chamber of Commerce.

Bernier declared Hoffman the Pontiac’s official party candidate before speaking about the party’s values and goals, with an emphasis on individual freedom.

Bernier said the federal budget could be balanced in a year by cutting foreign aid and corporate welfare. He spoke about ending financial support to the United Nations (UN) when the organization acts against Canadian values and interests.

Bernier emphasized the importance of sovereignty, both national and provincial. He said he will protect national sovereignty by refusing to allow global organizations like the World Economic Forum (WEF), UN, and World Health Organization (WHO) to impose policy upon Canada.

He said the separatist movements in both Quebec and Alberta would be satisfied by the PPC’s radical decentralization of the federal government, granting provinces autonomy and self-determination. He promised to rework the equalization program to incentivize “have-not” provinces to develop their own resources.

In response to concerns raised about Bill 96 in the context of provincial autonomy, Hoffman emphasized the local focus of his campaign: “I won’t serve the interests of Quebec nor Ottawa, but the Pontiac, and I’ll advocate for Charter rights strongly,” he said.

— On agriculture

Bernier’s agricultural policy is centered on deregulation and removing climate policies that hamper the agricultural sector. He claims farmers will benefit from lower taxes under a PPC government.

“You won’t have to protest in the streets because we will withdraw from the Paris Accord,” he said, referring to protests in Europe in the past couple years over climate policies that limit the use of fertilizer, reduce the size of livestock herds, and in some cases have resulted in the expropriation of farmland (in the Netherlands).

— On gun control

Bernier promised to be “tough on crime, not on law-abiding citizens.” Citing long rural police response times, Bernier said people have the right to defend themselves and shouldn’t be criminally charged for doing so. He said a PPC government would repeal all firearms legislation introduced by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

— On taxation

Bernier said in the first year, the PPC will cut federal spending, and in the second year, cut taxes. One resident asked if Bernier believes any tax is beneficial. He replied that the best tax is GST because consumers have control over it; they can choose if they want to make a purchase and pay GST, or not. He said GST taxes spending, not saving.

He then explained that income tax is the worst tax. He said the PPC will reduce the number of tax brackets from five to three and reduce income tax, without increasing the GST. He also promised to do away with the capital gains tax to encourage investment.

— On immigration

Bernier announced new immigration policy, introducing a moratorium on immigration for a few years until the housing crisis is solved and legal migrants who are already here can be integrated. He intends to deport illegal migrants including international students and temporary foreign workers who’ve overstayed their visas and refugee claimants. Bernier said the moratorium and deportations will be added to his official platform within a month.

Bernier also said he will withdraw from the Global Compact for Migration as migration isn’t a human right. He criticized the Canadian Multiculturalism Act saying it discourages integration and fosters imported conflicts between different ethnic groups.

“We’re losing this country step-by-step; our goal is to regain our country.” he concluded.

Photo – PPC supporters gathered at Brauwerk Hoffman, June 6, for a town hall meeting with party leader, Maxime Bernier. (BJ)