CALGARY, AB – Lisa Raitt delivered the Keynote Speech at the 46th Annual Agricultural Manufacturers of Canada (AMC) Convention and Trade Show today where she addressed the true Canadian values that unite us all.
In her speech, Ms. Raitt said creating Canadian jobs, by responsibly bringing Canadian resources to market, is what we should all embrace. “There has never been a contradiction between a strong economy and a clean, healthy environment — and we should all strive for balance.
“But Justin Trudeau and the Liberals have put special interest politics ahead of real jobs for the people who need them,” she said. “This is a betrayal of a real Canadian value. The dignity of your work should never be dictated by your postal code.
“Because to me, the promise of Canada is rooted in a simple fact…that here nobody gets to look down on you. Our confederation is not perfect. The historic tension between English and French Canadians. Between First Nations and other Canadians…some of the historic injustices faced by Japanese and Sikh Canadians…speak to our room to grow…and we have. But, make no mistake — this is the best country in the world.
“Canada’s story is the determination of folks who came to Atlantic Canada mostly from France and the British Isles. It is told in the toil of the prairie homesteaders, coming from around the world to make a new home. And the courage of people fleeing oppression to come north on the underground railroad. All working to create a new land of freedom and opportunity.
“So if we see that promise eroded — we should all be prepared to stand on guard. And we should all be alert to what, exactly, a real threat to Canadian values looks like. It comes in the form of a government that gives people permission -- to look down on their neighbours. Farmers feel it. Coal miners feel it. Loggers. Fishermen. One factory towns feel it. Atlantic Canadians feel it. Small towns in the West or in Quebec feel it. If you are not from Montreal, or Toronto, or Vancouver. If you are from Glace Bay or Gaspe or Lethbridge or Leamington you feel it. You feel it in the carbon tax. Or higher hydro prices.
“But you know what — you used to also feel it in the Long Gun Registry and Wheat Board. Before Stephen Harper took care of that. We’ve already proven that there is a better way. But there is still is a lot of work to do. And this is where the battle lines will be drawn in the 2019 election.
“If you think it is good fun to look down your nose at the simple folk from other places, to traffic in stereotypes. To seal yourself off in a bubble of your own superiority. To declare yourself to be part of the elite. And look down with contempt on those who don't share your 'values'. There is a party for you. But it is not the Conservative Party. Not the Conservative Party of Stephen Harper. The party of Stephen Harper — is about values. Hardwork. Accountability. Principled. Strong and Free.
“A country that is honourable in our dealings, faithful to our commitments, and faithful to our friends. That stands as both a courageous warrior and a compassionate neighbour.
“Our party has to be about the values of Jason Kenney. Where hard work is your path to a brighter future. A country where we believe in right and wrong — and don’t flinch or apologize for standing for what’s right — no matter the global consensus of the politically correct. You know — the kind of leadership that is the exact opposite of what we see from Rachel Notley and the NDP.
“Our party has to be about the values of leader like Preston Manning. Where the government is expected to put its trust in the people…and never the other way around.
“It has to be about the values of a leader like former PC Leader Robert Stanfield from my own home province. Hard working. Compassionate. Tolerant. That understands the seriousness of the work ahead of us.
“It has to be about the values of my new home of Ontario — defined by the Ontario PC Party and its leader Patrick Brown — who will soon end the misery of the Kathleen Wynne Liberals. This is a kind of conservatism that does not pick fights with other conservatives…that does not obsess on what divides us… but instead chooses to build something bigger and better — that includes Canadians…including new Canadians of all backgrounds.
“It has to be about the values of rural and small town Canada. Which are conservative values made real. The values of an honest day’s work. Where we celebrate tradition while embracing renewal. Where we’re never making excuses for ourselves, or accepting excuses of others. Where we judge one another, not by our name, or job, or place of birth…and not by empty words…but instead by our actions…including how we treat others…particularly those less fortunate.
“The values of family. Of faith. Of Community. Of Compassion. The values of right and wrong. And being accountable to ourselves and each other. A country where even if we don’t agree politically, nobody gets to look down on you. Everyone gets a fair hearing. Where all of us — All of us — are Canadians first.
“Those are the values of the Canada I know. Those are the values of my Conservative party. And those are my values that I have, and will continue to live and work by — every day — for the people of Canada. “
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