NDP leader visits Fanshawe
By Anton Vidgen
With the Ontario election just a day away, New Democratic
Party leader Howard Hampton stopped by Fanshawe College yesterday
to thank his supporters and make a final pitch to Londoners
to support their local NDP candidates.
Speaking to a cheering crowd of NDP supporters and curious
students, Hampton said Ontario is ready for real change and
his party was the only one capable of delivering on the promise.
"The Conservatives have been dismissed - the Liberals peaked
about 10 days ago and now that they're losing strength and
we've continued to gain momentum," he said. "People want to
see real change."
Hampton attacked Liberal Party leader Dalton McGuinty's stance
on hydro electricity, saying he altered his answer on the issue
15 times. "How can the people of Ontario trust [McGuinty]?" Hampton
asked. He also charged the Liberals with engaging in fear-mongering
tactics, saying McGuinty keeps alluding to the problems of
the current government and how they would remain unless voters
elected the Liberals.
"The Liberals are trying to get you to vote out of fear," Hampton
said. "The people of Ontario want the politics of hope."
According to Hampton, over 50 per cent of Ontario voters are
looking for a minority government, adding the NDP would hold
the elected government accountable.
Throughout his speech, Hampton continuously mentioned the
NDP's plan to reduce tuition fees by 10 per cent, raise the
minimum wage to $8 and install a public auto insurance system
- issues many Western and Fanshawe students in the crowd said
were important to them.
Western third-year history student Dave Molenhuis said he
was feeling the pinch from tuition, adding he might not be
able to afford to attend law school. He said the NDP's platform
recognized his concerns. "Howard Hampton has a pretty straight-forward
However, second-year Fanshawe general arts student Chris Borges
said he was wary of what Hampton's party could accomplish. "I
don't trust the NDP because of Bob Rae," he said.
"He's right about the whole Conservatives-being-dead thing," said
Nathan Coady, a first-year general arts student at Fanshawe.
Coady said the NDP seem like they might actually win in London
North Centre, the riding in which NDP candidate Rebecca Coulter
"I think my chances are excellent," Coulter said. "We've started
to get the phone calls that say we're winning in London North