January 2, 2017 6:49 pm
Updated: January 3, 2017 9:57 am

Dominic Cardy stands by reasons for stepping down as leader of New Brunswick NDP

WATCH ABOVE: On Sunday, New Brunswick New Democrats leader Dominic Cardy abruptly announced he is stepping down as leader. As Andrew Cromwell reports, he cites party infighting as the reason.

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Dominic Cardy is standing by his decision. On New Year’s Day, he announced he was stepping down as party leader, a position he has held since 2011. He also said others on the party executive, including the president, will follow.

Cardy is also cancelling his membership to the federal NDP party.

In his statement, Cardy directed stinging criticism in a number of directions, citing party infighting, which he says involved a small number of people but directly contributed in his decision.

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“I was getting really tired of seeing really good volunteers – especially newer people – getting involved in the party and then seeing their energy, enthusiasm and desire for change being immediately trampled on by people who have these weird, outdated ideological agendas,” Cardy said.

Cardy also directly called out the federal NDP as well as the province’s largest public sector union, saying CUPE is made up largely of the upper middle class and has not advanced the fight against extreme poverty in the province.

“When I hear from union leaders that the way to advance the cause of progressive politics in New Brunswick is to give more money to the upper middle class, I call B.S. on that.”

CUPE says it puts its money where its mouth is on promoting poverty reduction. Its president says the union still supports the NDP but its former leader? Not so much.

“Shortly after Dominic Cardy coming on the scene, the relationship hasn’t been good,” said CUPE New Brunswick President Danny Legere. “He’s driven a lot of our rank and file members because of positions he has taken over the years away from the party.”

The process to choose a new leader will move fairly quickly over the next days and weeks. An interim leader will be named and as well.

A meeting will be held to iron out things like dates for a leadership convention.

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