Fight, fight, fight

Nycole Turmel seems to have gotten everyone’s attention this morning., particularly with her vow to make this spring’s federal budget the “fight of her life.”

CBC has the video. And here is the full text.

Thank you. Thank you everyone.

Tell me.  Are you ready to roll up your sleeves and take on Stephen Harper?  Are you ready to fight for Canadian families?

For their jobs? For their healthcare? To fight the Conservative cuts to the services families rely on?

Well so am I.  And so is this incredible team with me today. My friends, I’ve just spent two tremendous days with this team. Planning how we’re going to fight for families in this session.

And I can tell you, we have the best team in Canadian politics right here in this room.  I would take these New Democrats over Stephen Harper’s crew any day.

Who would you rather have in your corner?  Peter Kent, or Megan Leslie?  Julian Fantino, or Christine Moore?  John Duncan, or Linda Duncan?  Tony Clement, or Alexandre Boulerice?  I’ll run out of time if I go on.  There are just too many of you to name.

It is incredible that six years into government, Stephen Harper’s team remains a total embarrassment.  And it’s not just me saying that.  I heard it over and over again as I toured Quebec over the last two weeks.

I’ve spoken to a lot of people.  Electrolux workers in Joliette with Francine Raynault.  Mayors and members of the Sherbrooke Chamber of Commerce with Pierre-Luc Dusseault, Jean Rousseau, Pierre Jacob, and Francois Choquette.

I spoke to Montrealers about affordable housing alongside Marjoline Boutin-Sweet and Pierre Nantel. To AbitibiBowater retirees with Élaine Michaud. I spoke to people in Louiseville and Berthierville with Ruth Ellen Brosseau. In Trois Rivieres with Robert Aubin. In Mascouche with Manon Perreault. In Quebec City with Annick Papillon, Alexandrine Latendresse and Denis Blanchette. And just this past Saturday, I spoke to locked out assembly workers with Irene Mathyssen and many of you in London.

These people were overjoyed because they finally had an MP who wasn’t taking them for granted. And who was working hard for them in their riding and here in Ottawa. I met small town mayors who were amazed to be meeting their local MP. Because they said no previous MP had ever come to see them.

And wherever I went, whoever I met with – workers, citizens, mayors or community leaders – they told me the same thing.

They said Nycole, we’re counting on you. We need New Democrats to be our voice in Ottawa. We need you to fight for our families and our communities right now. Because in these tough times, Stephen Harper and his Conservatives have turned their back on us.

On all of us fighting for our jobs. On all of us who still can’t find a family doctor. On those of us looking for nothing more than a little help to make ends meet in tough times.

Well my friends, I told them and I will tell you – we will be their voice in Ottawa. We will ensure the Conservatives can’t ignore them. We will fight for Canadian families every single day.

We’re going to fight for their jobs. Because the situation is urgent. I heard it from White Birch workers, from Kruger workers, from Electrolux workers. I heard it from the locked out workers of Electro-Motive Caterpillar in London this Saturday.

This is a company that happily took Stephen Harper’s corporate tax cuts over the years. But instead of creating jobs here in Canada, they’ve locked the doors on their own workers. They told them either they take a 50 per cent cut in their pay and their pensions, or their jobs will be shipped to the US.

That’s wrong. It shows the total failure of Stephen Harper’s inaction on job creation. And if Stephen Harper hasn’t heard the message he should hear it now.

Stop the inaction. Stop the handouts to your well-connected friends.  And make job creation your number one priority.

Stephen Harper has his priorities wrong.  He thinks the most pressing issue right now is MPs pensions.

Not the retirement security of millions of Canadians.

You know, maybe it’s because I’m a long long way from having an MP pension.  But I came here to fight for better pensions for all Canadians.

Stephen Harper should join me.

He should let an arms-length committee take care of MP pensions. It’s quick. It’s simple.

Maybe it will give him time to finally focus on ensuring every Canadian can retire in security.

That’s what Canadian leadership is all about.

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