Election possible, says Sea to Sky MP 

John Weston: 'unprecedented listening' being done around budget

A federal election is likely after a budget vote in late March that could bring down the government, Sea to Sky's Member of Parliament said Monday.

John Weston, the Conservative MP for West Vancouver-Sunshine Coast-Sea to Sky Country, told Pique in an interview that an election is "definitely possible" later this month, but that it comes down to the opposition parties and whether they'll support a federal budget to be presented by Finance Minister Jim Flaherty.

"It's totally up to the opposition parties," Weston said. "I think if you ask Canadians, most people in Whistler, Squamish, around our riding don't want one, and I think I encountered two persons in the riding who do."

The budget is to be presented in the House of Commons on March 22 and it is expected to include measures that the governing Conservative Party hopes will reduce the country's deficit, which has climbed due to economic stimulus spending on infrastructure projects across Canada.

Those measures could include a series of corporate income tax cuts that were approved by Parliament in 2007. It is because the government is going ahead with this that the opposition Liberals and Bloc Quebecois have committed to voting against the budget, leaving it up to the New Democratic Party to prop up the Conservatives if they so choose.

If they don't, they'll vote against the budget, triggering the fall of the government and a third election in five years for Canadians.

Should that happen, Weston feels he's prepared to fight another election to hold on to his riding.

"There are circles of people I've had the privilege to work with who like me just want to keep the momentum going," he said. "I guess through hard work and constant exposure, I feel prepared should it be necessary to campaign for re-election."

While Weston feels prepared, Liberal candidate Daniel Veniez is practically gunning to get out on the election trail and try to win the riding that includes Whistler, Squamish and West Vancouver.

"I've been ready for a year, so absolutely ready," he said in an interview. "It's time that we had an honest and open debate on the future of the country and it's time that we have a candid discussion on the performance of our MP.



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