August 10, 2015 8:48 pm
Updated: August 11, 2015 3:17 am

Meet some of the Kelowna—Lake Country federal election candidates

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KELOWNA – While the incumbent Conservative is trying for a fourth term as MP for Kelowna—Lake Country, at least three others are trying to ensure that doesn’t happen.

Federal election candidates in the riding are preparing for one of the longest campaigns in Canadian history.

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“There’s not a moment to waste. I think everybody needs to think about who they are voting for in this election,” says NDP candidate Norah Bowman. “They need to start thinking and plan when and where they are going to vote, who they are going to take with them and start getting ready now.”

Norah Bowman is an English professor at Okanagan College. The rookie candidate says she has been door knocking for months to find out what issues are on the minds of voters.

“Jobs, the environment and childcare are issues I’ve heard come up when door knocking,” says Bowman. “Childcare comes up a lot because as people are trying to plan their careers and look after their families, they’re really struggling to find affordable childcare and that cuts across all generations.”

Also running for the first time is Liberal candidate Stephen Fuhr, a retired Canadian Forces fighter pilot.

“Part of our plan is to invest in green tech and research and development,” says Fuhr. “We are ideally suited in the Okanagan, we’ve got a great innovation centre coming, we’ve got great post-secondary education facilities in our community.”

The federal Green Party candidate for the Kelowna—Lake Country riding has decided not to do an on-camera interview with Global News. Gary Adams has said he plans to step down in an effort to avoid splitting the vote with Fuhr.

“We do have a cooperation agreement in place and I’m really proud of it. We are the only riding in Canada that was able to do this,” says Fuhr. “Elizabeth May has asked for Gary not to step down in support of my campaign quite yet. She wants to have a broader discussion with the other leaders which I respect and we’ll give her that time.”

Meanwhile, incumbent Conservative candidate Ron Cannan, having served nine years as a Kelowna city councillor and then nine and a half years as a member of Parliament, says he plans to continue focusing on the constituents.

Despite garnering a large share of the vote in recent elections, Cannan says he doesn’t ever take his role for granted.

“We have record amounts invested in health care and working with the wine industry and agricultural industry which is the foundation of our valley. I’m looking forward to the next few months, meeting with constituents on door steps and continuing to focus on their needs,” says Cannan.

But we won’t know until October 19 whether other candidates have succeeded in their uphill battle to unseat the popular incumbent.

The new Kelowna—Lake Country riding has some minor changes to its boundaries, but it still includes the district of Lake Country, Duck Lake Indian Reserve Number 7 and a large portion of Kelowna.

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