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Atlantic Liberals deny strategic timing of funding announcements

Click to play video: 'Liberal MPs say slew of funding announcements not election related' Liberal MPs say slew of funding announcements not election related
WATCH: There have been dozens of funding announcements across the Maritimes over recent weeks, but politicians say it’s not part of their election strategy. Andrew Cromwell reports – Aug 29, 2019

Politicians are denying it’s election related, but one political scientist says it’s hard to ignore the aggressive rate of Liberal funding announcements in recent weeks.

This morning, Moncton-area MP Ginette Petitpas Taylor spelled out funding details for $1-million investment in palliative care in southeastern New Brunswick. A few hundred kilometres away in Dartmouth, fellow Liberal Darren Fisher doled out another $100,000 as part of the Federal Women’s Entrepreneurship Strategy.

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In communities across the Maritimes, Liberal MPs have announced spending commitments from a few thousand dollars to several million. They refuse to say the almost-daily announcements are related to the pending election in October.

“I think that we all can agree that access to palliative care services is not a political matter,” said Petitpas Taylor. “This is a very personal matter to Canadians and to New Brunswickers.”

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In Dartmouth, Fisher defended the announcement he was part of.

“This is an important issue,” said Fisher. “It’s going to add billions of dollars to our GDP in Canada.”

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UNB Saint John political scientist JP Lewis says its hard to ignore the aggressive rate at which the announcements are taking place.

“The manner and the timing of it … it’s difficult to to not see some political strategy behind it especially when you think about the regions that it’s taking place,” said Lewis.

Atlantic Canada’s 32 seats went Liberal red in 2015. This year, the region could be an important one in what is likely to be a close race.

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“If it comes down to a few seats even though… there’s only 10 seats in New Brunswick (and) 32 seats across the Atlantic Canadian region, it’s still important to hang on to as many seats as you can,” Lewis explained.

Canadians are expected to head to the polls on Oct. 21.

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