Saskatchewan’s New Democrats formally launched their campaign to determine the party’s next leader on Sept. 5, promising an ambitious schedule of all-candidates forums in every region of the province.
“New Democrats are moving forward, ready to do the hard work of building our tomorrow,” said Deb Higgins, chair of the Leadership Contest Committee which will oversee the race. “Saskatchewan people need a real alternative, and our party is ready to build that alternative, starting today.”
The first of 14 debates will take place on November 17 at 7 p.m. at the Ramada Inn in Regina. Other all-candidates’ forums will follow in Humboldt on Nov. 22, Saskatoon on Nov. 24, Swift Current on Nov. 29 and Melfort on Dec. 1.
After a break over the holiday season, debates will follow in Rosetown, Weyburn, the Battlefords, Yorkton, Prince Albert, Regina, and Moose Jaw, culminating in a closing debate in Saskatoon on Feb. 16. The party is also in discussions with MBC Radio to host a radio debate focused on Northern issues in early February.
“This is a far more ambitious schedule of all-candidates’ forums than took place during the last provincial leadership race in 2009 or during the recent federal leadership race,” Higgins noted. “The number of forums is a testament both to the level of interest in this race amongst our supporters, and to our party’s commitment to re-connecting with people in every region of our province.”
As of Sept. 4th, prospective leadership candidates can formally register and be provided with access to NDP membership lists. Information about how to contact each registered candidate will be available through the provincial NDP website at www.saskndp.ca.
“Saskatchewan New Democrats are energized and ready for an exciting leadership contest focused on the future,” concluded NDP President Cory Oxelgren. “I know we will come out of this leadership race united and ready to provide Saskatchewan people with the alternative they need and deserve.”
To be eligible to vote in the NDP leadership contest, one must be a 2013 NDP member six weeks prior to March 9th, 2013. Members will receive a ballot in the mail and will be given the option of voting in advance by mail, phone or on-line, or voting in real time by phone or Internet on Mar. 9, 2013, during the live-streamed Leadership Convention.