Conservative leader Andrew Scheer speaking to a crowd during one of his stops on a visit to the Okanagan this week. Submitted photo

Neufeld re-seeking Conservative candidacy for 2019

Marshall Neufeld lost to the NDP’s Richard Cannings for South Okanagan—West Kootenay in 2015

The next federal election isn’t for another year-and-a-half, but the Conservative Party candidate from 2015 says he will be taking a stab at running again.

“If the Conservative Party membership chooses to endorse me, I would be happy to be the representative again, going into the next election,” Marshall Neufeld said.

Neufeld isn’t the only one weighing in on the issue. Three former leadership candidates have been challenged in their own riding, already. Brad Trost failed to win candidacy in his riding, while Kellie Leitch said she would not be running again. Deepak Obhrai’s riding has not yet held its Conservative candidacy race.

Related: Andrew Scheer talks NAFTA, cabinet shuffle at Naramata event

Marshall Neufeld took second place for the Conservatives in the 2015 election in the newly created South Okanagan-West Kootenay riding. NDP candidate Richard Cannings took the riding with 24,823 votes (37.3 per cent of the popular vote) a hair over half of the votes after losing in a previous provincial election.

Meanwhile, Neufeld left the October 2015 election with 29.8 per cent of the votes (19,871). The Liberal candidate, Connie Denesiuk, finished with 28.1 per cent (18,732) and the Green Party candidate, Samantha Troy, received 2,792 votes (4.2 per cent). Independent candidate Brian Grey received 376 votes (0.6 per cent).

But this time, Neufeld said he feels he can take the riding for the party, saying he would be seeking the candidacy for the party.

Related: Cannings ready to take another shot at election (2014)

“I don’t have anything against Dick (Cannings) personally, at all, however his voting record on issues that are important to Canadians and the track record of his party is not one that I choose to support,” he said.

He noted he has been involved in politics for a long time, largely as a volunteer, which he said could give him an upper edge. He added that he has a long background in business, working in real estate in Penticton for 10 years.

And that, he said, was his major issue: local business.

“There’s been an assault on small business that has been taking place over this last year. Particularly by the federal government, but both levels of government,” he said, referring to new small business taxes federally and the payroll tax for health care provincially.

Related: Cannings reflects on a productive year

The comments came following a Western News one-on-one interview with Conservative leader Andrew Scheer outside Bad Tattoo, where he had met with Osoyoos Indian Band Chief Clarence Louie.

“I’m heartened that he has such a strong desire to see this riding become Conservative again and that he wants to hear about our issues,” Neufeld said.

Scheer, himself, said he was confident Conservatives would be able to take the riding for its second election.

“I’ve heard a lot today of the disappointment that the NDP supported the Liberal attacks on small business. This whole area is full of entrepreneurs. Many, many people here have jobs thanks to local businesses,” Scheer said. “A lot of people told me that they voted NDP last time and watching them vote with the Liberals on this very important issue, they’re coming back to the Conservative Party.”

Related: Rookie MP reflects on his first year in office

Taking the riding may not be so easy, though. Prior to its forming, the area included the Okanagan—Coquihalla and British Columbia Southern Interior ridings, the former a more urban riding and the latter a rural riding.

And while the urban riding, which included Penticton, kept Conservative, Alliance and Reform members of Parliament for about two decades, the rural riding has a long history with the NDP.

No date has yet been set for the candidacy race in Penticton.

Find our one-on-one interview with Conservative leader Andrew Scheer on our website, www.pentictonwesternnews.com.

Just Posted

Greyhound to end bus service in B.C., Alberta

Company axing passenger bus and freight services in Prairies, and cutting all but one route in B.C.

First Nation pipeline protesters erect ‘tiny homes’ in B.C. Park

Kanahus Manuel and Tiny House Warriors say more homes being constructed in park

France doubles up Croatia 4-2 to win World Cup

Played in Moscow Russia, latest Fifa World Cup marks the highest scoring final since 1966

Wildfire season is here

Tips to protect your property

National award for Selkirk alumnus

One of 10 winners from across Canada

BC Games: Dance, spoken-word highlights at Opening Ceremony in Cowichan

Hundreds of athletes and thousands of volunteers, coaches, parents and officials

B.C. city wants pot punted from farmland

Concerned about conversion from growing food to making marijuana

World’s translators push back on forcing Trump interpreter to testify

Democrats had asked translator to testify about Trump’s lengthy conversation with Putin in Helsinki

No decision on B.C. school stabbing suspect’s mental fitness for trial

The BC Review Board could not determine whether Gabriel Klein, 21, is fit to stand trial

Canadian government threatens to retaliate if Trump imposes auto tariffs

U.S president had suggested that auto imports pose a national security risk to the U.S.

Wildfire evacuation order forces bride to search for new wedding venue

Fitzpatrick Family Vineyards is under an order due to the Mount Eneas wildfire south of Peachland

Recent online kitten abuse video raises serious social media questions

UBC and UFV profs weigh in on the subject of online sharing, shaming, and our digital landscape

UPDATED: ICBC fights back against claims that it’s ‘ripping off’ B.C. RV drivers

Canadian Taxpayers Federation is urging the provincial government to open up ICBC to competition

Summerland issues State of Local Emergency in response to wildfire

Two homes under evacuation order; evacuation alert remains in place as result of wildfire

Most Read