BRAMPTON, ON, April 29, 2015 /CNW/ - The Patrick Brown Leadership Campaign today expressed its profound disappointment in a decision made by the Progressive Conservative Party of Ontario's Leadership Election Organizing Committee (LEOC) to disenfranchise hundreds of party members in Northern Ontario.
"This is a sad day for the PC Party of Ontario," said Mark Towhey, Executive Director of Brown's campaign. "LEOC has chosen to disregard its own rules and to rob Northern Ontario members of their right to participate in the leadership election."
Under past leaders, the PC Party had all but forgotten Northern Ontario – failing even to show up for leaders debates during general elections. The Party's Deputy Leader Christine Elliott even issued a map as part of her leadership campaign showing her dream to win Ontario – a map that forgot Northern Ontario even exists. This type of thinking cannot continue if the Party is ever to form government again.
In violation of its own rules, LEOC has decided not to have two voting locations for the May 3 and 7 leadership election in some large, remote Northern ridings. As a result, members may be required to travel hundreds of kilometers in order to vote. The Brown campaign protested this flagrant violation of the rules, but today the PC Party rejected that complaint.
Patrick Brown's Ontario includes the North. Patrick Brown has been actively growing the PC Party by inviting in members from communities in every corner of the province, including the North. Brown has personally travelled through Northern Ontario nine times just during his leadership campaign and sold hundreds of new memberships there. As a result of this decision by LEOC, many of those new members will no longer be able to vote.
"There are hundreds of new Party members in Northern Ontario who want to be included in our democracy," said Towhey. "This decision smacks of the same elitist thinking and ignorance of Ontario geography that cost the PC Party the last four elections in a row. It shows how desperately the same old, same old gang wants to cling to power. They will do anything to try and stop Patrick Brown from winning. They must not succeed."
About Patrick Brown
Patrick Brown has been elected three times as Conservative Member of Parliament for Barrie. Patrick's work with new Canadian communities in the GTA and 20-years' experience in the Conservative movement make him uniquely able to build the broad, winning coalition the PC Party of Ontario needs to win. For more information, please visit: www.VotePatrickBrown.ca
SOURCE Patrick Brown for the Win
For further information: Tamara Macgregor, Director of Communications, Tel: (416) 819-8757, [email protected]