81-year-old voter takes 'Defeat Harper' message to Winnipeg streets
'He is not truthful, but he is a very persuasive liar,' Doreen Routley says of Conservative leader
A Winnipeg senior is so disenchanted with the current federal government that she has taken her frustrations to the streets hoping to sway voters' opinions before going to the polls this October.
Doreen Routley, 81, used to be a staunch Conservative.
"I was a real strong supporter of the Progressive Conservatives, but when Brian Mulroney was in, that was the end of my connection with them. Next to Harper, Mulroney is an angel," said Routley.
"He is not truthful, but he is a very persuasive liar."
The youth has to get out and vote because if they did they could make a lot of changes in this country.- Doreen Routley
The senior citizen has spent her days this week walking up and down Portage Avenue in downtown Winnipeg. Dressed in green with a yellow flower in her brimmed hat on Wednesday, Routley was also sporting a billboard with big bold lettering and an emphatic political message.
"Bring back democracy: Defeat Harper," reads the front of the sign, with "Vote! But not! Conservative" on the back.
She claims her family should have known her days of protest in the streets were coming.
Routley spent about four hours on Tuesday and Wednesday handing out sheets of anti-Harper information downtown. She is doing it because she believes "Harper has taken democracy out of our country.
"When he was in opposition, he promised us three things if we voted him in. The first one was transparency in government, the second one was an elected senate and the third one was less government," said Routley.
"Well, we got omnibus bills that are so convoluted it takes years to find out what's in them, we did not get an elected senate and he put about 30 more seats in the House of Commons."
Routley has four brothers, three of whom are veterans. She feels Canada's soldiers aren't being properly valued or recognized for all of their sacrifices.
Routley said some of her friends her age claim to be Tory supporters. She doesn't believe they all understand that the party has changed and isn't what it once was.
"Many of the people who are voting Conservative think they're voting for the Progressive Conservatives. Well, there is no more progressives."
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Another factor motivating Routley to interact with people face-to-face in downtown Winnipeg is the opportunity to meet young people and attempt to gain a sense of who they are planning to vote for.
"The youth has to get out and vote because if they did they could make a lot of changes in this country," said Routley. "I'd like them to become more informed about what's going on so that we can have more power when we see a party going off the rails."
The 81-year-old said that if her one-person demonstration only convinces one person to change their mind, then it was all worth it.
"People have to decide: are they going to save our country and vote other than Harper?" said Routley. "And then, the choice has to be whether they're going to vote for Mulcair or Trudeau."