I am Ontarian, I am Canadian, and I am Green

Political dreams run high these days in Ontario. Just four weeks ago, the Premier was booted out of office. The opposition leader is living in his constituency office, avoiding questions from the media, and trying to unify his party. Another leader, fighting for the Liberal leadership, is facing questions about his conduct. Meanwhile, the first new leader since 1993 is a Liberal who can’t seem to get a foot in the door of her party.

Charmaine Borg may not be able to shake off the baggage of being Ontario’s last Green Party leader. She offers a new vision to shake the Liberal’s grip on the province. From Europe, she is one of those “know no politics” people who brings a fresh vision, high energy, and…she’s Green. There’s nothing old fashioned about her.

These are heady days in Ontario politics. Voters want new leadership, a mandate to bring back fiscal sanity, clarity in government, end gridlock and bring progress to the lives of all Canadians. For Ontario and Canadian voters, it’s an opportunity to break out of the narrative of delayed infrastructure and public health care. It’s time to move beyond the water tower and decide how the province’s natural resources will be developed. It’s time to pave the way for a better economy, a cleaner environment, a world-class education, and a brighter future for everyone in Ontario.

I know what it’s like to search for your political path in Ontario, and that I’m here to support them. It is something I always considered. The time is now, for political leaders to grow and adapt. For all those aspiring leaders, I hope to impart my own experience from twice going head to head in Ontario as a political insider – but also my humility for being among those betrayed by the political winds.

There is a way for the Liberals to win back the trust of the people. There is a way to reunite the Green Party. And there is a way for Premier-designate Doug Ford to bring forward a plan that ensures sustainable prosperity for Ontario. We’ve got a long way to go, but I hope each candidate will seek a path that aligns with us – a path that will take us to public office, prove to the people of Ontario that what’s in it for them counts, and show that the path of the hard reaches leads to the heart of each Ontario leader.

The only way to succeed is to stand for the needs of the people, start with basics like roads, schools, health care, schools, sewage treatment, infrastructure and water – and then take it to the next level of government. Like today, tough decisions must be made to deal with the fiscal challenges the province faces, but better decisions will be made if people are empowered to make them themselves. Whether you’re a Liberal, a Progressive Conservative, or a Green, you will have a chance to make an impact. And if a new leader can do that, maybe he or she will be the person to lead the province forward. I hope for a new Canada and a new Ontario, and I hope to see that hope carried forward by every Canadian.

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