'Hip' guitarist decries Green debate exclusion
Add the voice of a rock star to the criticism of the decision to exclude Green Party Leader Elizabeth May from the televised leaders’ debate.
The Tragically Hip’s lead guitar player, Rob Baker, says he is personally disappointed. Baker showed up at a campaign rally for the local Liberal candidate in Lanark-Frontenac-Lennox and Addington in eastern Ontario on Tuesday.
Wearing a blue t-shirt featuring a stylized portrait of Pierre Trudeau, Baker says the band’s studio is in the riding.
Baker says he’d probably vote Green if he didn’t think it would split the vote and help the Conservatives. But he says he’s voted Liberal in the last few elections and calls his local Liberal MP Peter Milliken a friend.
Baker says he’s particularly concerned about recent Conservative government cuts to arts and culture programs. The guitar player says he was personally offended earlier this year at the Governor-General’s Performing Arts Awards when not a single Conservative minister showed up to any of the four non-partisan shows.
Baker says the Tragically Hip might not need some of the federal programs that were cut recently, but other groups, such as the National Ballet and Canadian Opera Company do. When asked if he had any ideas for a theme song for Liberal Leader Stéphane Dion, Baker suggested the well-known Hip tune “Ahead by a Century”.
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