Inside Politics

'It's not only what's good for Hector or St. Boniface'

Hector Ducharme does not take democracy for granted. He's an undecided voter in Winnipeg's St. Boniface riding. Last night Ducharme showed up at the Liberal Party's town hall last night to hear Michael Ignatieff speak.

In the past, Ducharme says he's voted Liberal, NDP and most recently for the Conservatives. Conservative Leader Stephen Harper was in Winnipeg earlier this week and Ducharme listened to every word he said.

"I don't have a warm welcoming feeling with Mr. Harper. I wish I could explain to you what it is. I'm not trying to run the prime minister down but perhaps as an economist he deals with numbers. People have feelings and emotions and you have to connect with people."

After the townhall, as the media scrum trailed Ignatieff out the door of the sweltering Franco-Manitoban Cultural Centre, I asked Ducharme what he thought of the Liberal leader.

"On about 90 per cent of the issues I felt very good listening to Mr. Ignatieff. Although, being an ex-military person I was a little put off about the $30 billion with the aircraft because I really feel very strongly that Canada needs to keep up to date with the latest kind of technology if we're going to be a meaningful partner in NATO," he said. "So that was one area that I wasn't really all that pleased"

For Ducharme, the highlight of the evening was when Ignatieff talked about the potential of Canada's aboriginal peoples. Even so, Ducharme says he still hasn't made up his mind, "I think in all fairness, I have to go out and listen to Mr. Layton. And I have to go with an open mind and listen very closely again to Mr. Harper. And I'm not going to pre-judge, I'm going there with an open mind."

To this day, Ducharme says he takes the advice of his father who told him to consider Canada as a whole on election day. "It's not only what's good for Hector or St. Boniface. It's what's good for all our fellow Canadians because we want the majority of our people to do well and have hope and have good successful families and a good life in our beautiful country."
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