If the leader of the opposition, conservative leader Pierre Poilievre, thinks he could have a case to make of Chinese government interference in Don Valley North in the last election, he could not be more wrong. All he is doing is appealing to the racists in his own party and in the People’s Party. He needs their support.
And why MP Han Dong would need the People’s Republic of China to support his candidacy in Don Valley North, is beyond me. I always followed the ethnic trends in every neighbourhood of that riding very closely. Don Valley North was my old federal and provincial riding in the North York area of Toronto. It was where David Smith called me to ask if he could be the federal liberal candidate at the end of 1979. David had an easy win in 1980 but lost it to the Mulroney sweep in 1984. By then I had moved out of the city and ended up retiring to Barrie. It was only by co-incidence that then Senator David Smith had replaced the ailing Keith Davey and Barrie was the only Ontario city that was lost by the liberals in the 1993 Chrétien sweep.
But what I found in Barrie was the far more interesting saga of Patrick Brown. You can never get away from interesting politics. Patrick is what is known in political circles as a retail politician. He was the local Loblaws. He worked the street. He made the profits. He was ever present. His name was always in front of you. He was introduced to Jason Kenney in Ottawa who had made his life-work understanding and manipulating Canada’s ethnic populations. Jason sang the praises of the Indian Sub-Continent to the younger MP. Patrick was soon on his way to India. He became familiar to the Sikh and Indian diaspora in Canada. He was prime minister Modi’s friend. And it paid off.
When the handwriting on the wall was there for all to see; we all knew the Harper Era was ending in 2015. Brown bet on the provincial opportunities. He swamped the weakened progressive conservative membership in Ontario with Sub-Continent diaspora from the Indian and Sikh communities spread across Ontario.
It was a desperate conservative party that turned the tables on Patrick before he could take them into an election. The accusations were flying and Brown, as expected, lost his cool. Despite the efforts of Doug Ford, Brown found a nest in Brampton—home to so many of the Sikh diaspora. His saga continues…
Copyright 2023 © Peter Lowry
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