Kennedy Stewart nominated as the federal NDP candidate in Burnaby-Douglas

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      The federal New Democrats have nominated SFU public-policy professor and former rock 'n' roll musician Kennedy Stewart as their candidate in Burnaby-Douglas.

      Stewart will attempt to fill the shoes of NDP MP Bill Siksay, who is retiring after holding the seat since 2004. Before that, Svend Robinson represented the area, which covers much of North Burnaby.

      Siksay defeated Conservative Ronald Leung, a high-profile Chinese-language broadcaster, by 798 votes in 2008.

      In 2004, Stewart ran for the NDP against Hedy Fry in Vancouver Centre, coming second with 32 percent of the vote.

      He won a first-ballot victory last night (February 25) at Confederation Centre over Neworld Theatre board member and essayist Alnoor Gova and former City of North Vancouver councillor Sam Schechter.

      The new nominee has promised to push for a national housing strategy, reduce (though not ban) oil traffic in Burrard Inlet, oppose Conservative corporate tax cuts, and work to double Canada Pension Plan payments to seniors over the medium term.

      Stewart was supported by many members of the NDP establishment, including former acting provincial leader Joy MacPhail, former party president Patrice Pratt, and Canadian Labour Congress president Ken Georgetti. Georgetti has deep roots in the riding and the CLC has launched a major campaign to have CPP payments doubled.

      Gova, who pledged to continue the "Siksay-Robinson tradition" in Burnaby-Douglas, was backed by outspoken critics of U.S. militarism, including Langara College professor Peter Prontzos, UBC professor Sunera Thobani, and writer Yves Engler, among others.

      Schechter's supporters included Burnaby councillor Sav Dhaliwal and outspoken former NDP MLA David Schreck.

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      Keats Morton

      Mar 4, 2011 at 4:37pm

      I think it is great that Kennedy Stewart is running. Bill was great and deserves a good break from the stress that Stephen Harper creates, we need action in this country and a new face in this riding will be a positive change. If Kennedy is elected, I would like to see more questions from him at question period in the House of Commons.

      Dave Gustafson

      May 3, 2011 at 10:30am

      Congratulations on Kennedy Stewarts' hard fought victory. It is exactly people like him that need to be in Ottawa to counter the onslaught of the Conservative dictatorship, I anticipate will be self evident shortly. All Canadians will benefit by his enlightened views and perspectives.