Halifax West MP Geoff Regan is currently in Quebec, riding along with Liberal Leader Michael Ignatieff on Ignatieff’s countrywide bus tour. Regan will also take the bus to Baddeck next week when the Liberals will hold their regional and national caucus meeting. Metro caught up with Regan between stops in Montreal.
What’s going to be on the agenda at the caucus meeting?
This is a chance, when you have MPs and senators from all across the country, gathering together to basically report what they’ve been hearing over the course of the summer and to prepare our strategy for the fall. A large part is hearing what people bring forward in terms of priorities that they heard in their own riding. But I think there are a few things that are fairly obvious. I would include Mr. Harper’s dumb decision to scrap the long-form census ... probably the state of the long-gun registry and why the Conservatives are hiding the RCMP report on the long-gun registry. They need to ensure that the economy continues to recover and that municipalities are not left on the hook when stimulus and infrastructure funding (expires) next March.
It’s been a fairly busy summer for news, at least by summer standards. Is that going to carry forward into the fall?
I think it will be a busy fall ... I think there are many issues that Mr. Ignatieff has heard across the country, that our MPs have heard from people that they’re concerned about, that we’ll certainly raise when the fall arrives ... There’s a lot of issues across the country for us to be discussing this fall.
What do you think the main issues Nova Scotia will be facing this fall?
I’d be wiser to leave that to provincial politicians ... (but) I’m really glad to have our colleagues from across the country coming to our region because they get to hear from local people and get a sense that reinforces what we tell them about what’s happening economically for us, what’s happening in rural communities that are impacted by the downturn in, for instance, forestry ... I think its valuable for us when our colleagues from across the country come to our province and our part of the country and get a better understanding of what our priorities are here.