love-fullBy Anne Finlay-Stewart

You can never go wrong raising the names of Grey County's trailblazing political women Agnes McPhail and Nellie McClung. The Bruce-Grey Owen Sound Liberal nomination meeting began with just such an invocation by chair Mary Anne Alton, former director of education for the Bluewater District School Board. Under party rules, nominations were closed August 14, and Kimberly Love's nomination went uncontested.

Kaisha Thompson, a 24-year-old law student from Meaford, nominated Love, recalling their first meeting. "It was when Stephen Harper prorogued parliament and the Liberals continued to work. Kim came to Ottawa as part of the shadow cabinet. It was her compassion and positivity that struck me right away.She is progressive yet pragmatic." Thompson said the region needs Love "so our voice is heard in Ottawa, not Stephen Harper's voice echoed in Grey-Bruce." She spoke passionately about the need for policies that will allow young people to come home to Grey-Bruce and practice law or medicine or buy back the family farm. Thomson was joined in her nomination speech by Alex Watson, 22, from Owen Sound. Both have accepted roles in the local Liberal campaign.

Long-time Arran-Elderslie Mayor Ron Oswald seconded Love's nomination, beginning by quipping "at my age I will second

now, before I speak."

Oswald said he had shaken the hands of nine prime ministers, beginning with Louis St. Laurent, when he visited Chesley. "I told that to Justin Trudeau when I shook his hand and I told him "I hope you will be the tenth." Oswald says he feels the wind has changed and "the bloom is off the Harper rose." Latest polls show Liberals leading in voter support nationally, with an election expected no later than next fall and possibly as early as spring 2015.

In her acceptance speech, Love said she felt the country has been drastically changed and divided over the past eight years. Regaining our respect and compassion is the work ahead, she said. Love ran in the 2011 federal election for incumbent Larry Miller's seat. She placed third, after the NDP's Karen Gventer.

The Liberal campaign office will open Saturday, August 30 on 8th Street East in Owen Sound, opposite the Farmers' Market.

Anne Finlay-Stewart is Community Editor of She can be reached at [email protected].


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