Liberals Hold AGM

Outgoing riding chair Ross Collicott (left) and new riding chair Muhammad Yousuf Qasmi

Outgoing riding chair Ross Collicott (left) and new riding chair Muhammad Yousuf Qasmi

Robert Thomas

It was a small but enthusiastic gathering Saturday morning as the Moose Jaw – Lake Centre – Lannigan Federal Liberals held their Annual General Meeting.

Outgoing riding chair Russ Collicott told local Party members “financially the riding is very sound. Ie we have a lot of cash in and not a lot of cash out.”

Although they finished third locally in the last federal election Collicott said “we have a lot of data and meta data going into the next election…there is a bit more support than people would think in the rural areas.”

Collicott stepped down as local riding chair due to changes in his work commitments which took him out of the city most of the time. He will remain as a director.

The new riding chair is Muhammad Yousuf Qasmi. 

After the election of local officers there were questions and discussion from the floor. 

One issue discussed was the upcoming election and how at least one individual has expressed a desire to run as a candidate. The local Liberals though are open to others putting their names forward.

In order to be an official candidate all applicants are vetted locally and then a provincial green light committee does a thorough check by requesting a criminal record, background and intense social media check. 

Collicott said candidates could be turned down not because of what they say on social media but who even their Facebook friends are. 

Campaign plans for the Liberals was described as the same as the 1960's which is a tried and true strategy of personal contacts with voters.

“It’s knocking on doors, making phone calls and getting your vote out..having conversations with Canadians one person at a time,” attendees were told on how to win elections.

During an informal discussion issues discussed was how to demonstrate how the Liberal Party has made progress in many areas and additionally how they have helped on the pipeline issue. Getting pipelines built was a said to be a way to secure jobs and hopefully open up the ability to allow producers to move more grain on the rail lines. Both were seen as positive for the local economy. 

“There has been a number of good things done (by the Federal Liberal government) that haven’t been communicated as well as possible,” attendees heard during the discussion. 

There was some discussion as to a disconnect between Party headquarters in knowing all of the pressing local issues but also attendees heard local candidates are the ones who know the issues and help bridge that divide.

The next moves for the new board is to find more members and they are especially interested in any women who would like to become a board member or even apply as a potential candidate. 

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