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North Bay Nugget (ON)
Mon 01 Oct 2007
Page: A1
Section: Front
Byline: Jennifer Hamilton-McCharles
Source: The Nugget

The Liberals and Tories are two sides of the same coin, Fred Hahn, secretary and treasurer for Canadian Union of Public Employees of Ontario, said in a stop in North Bay Saturday.

“The Tories pave a disastrous path. They support private clinics and health care, they provide no money for cities and they were the party that froze the minimum wage,” said Hahn, visiting Nipissing NDP candidate Henri Giroux’s campaign office on Cassells Street.

“Tory is for Bay Street. He’s an advocate for the business people. They’re the ones who make the most money in the province, not the residents in Nipissing,” he said.

The Liberals are no better, Hahn said.

“In the four years they’ve been in power they’ve done nothing,” he said, adding the caricature of McGuinty on the bus being driven across the province shows him with a long nose.

“Dalton can’t be trusted. He’s Pinocchio. His nose grows with every lie he tells.”

In addition to criticizing the Tories and Grits, Hahn said the message he wants to bring to Nipissing is voters have a real choice Oct. 10.

“We have a candidate who knows the issues and understands them,” he said.

“He works in long-term care where there are many concerns. He knows about the downloading of services and the problem with property taxes, but these are the issues not being discussed.

“The Tories have done a brilliant job of putting all the attention on their faith-based school funding promises.”

Hahn said voters should be asking candidates about the faulty education funding formula and the job losses this community has endured – such as more than 30 at the Near North District School Board and 26 at the Nipissing Joint Hospital Laundry.

“This riding goes back and forth from Liberal to Conservative, but there’s a real option here,” Hahn said.

Giroux isn’t too concerned NDP Leader Howard Hampton hasn’t visited the city, even though Conservative candidate Bill Vrebosch greeted Tory Leader John Tory Friday and Liberal incumbent Monique Smith welcomed Health Minister George Smitherman Sunday.

“It’s not about the party’s top leader, it’s about the candidate,” he said.

“Howard isn’t going to come here to save jobs. That will be the responsibility of the Nipissing riding candidate. He has his own riding to take care of.”