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Sunday, October 30, 2011 

Robert Chisholm Enters New Democratic Leadership Race As A Serious Contender


I've known Robert Chisholm for many years and am very happy that he has thrown his hat into the race for leader of Canada's New Democrats. Robert took the Nova Scotia party from 2 or 3 seats in the provincial legislature to Official Opposition. He is a charismatic, committed and highly skilled candidate for the position.

"Nova Scotia MP Robert Chisholm has joined the federal NDP leadership race, becoming the eighth candidate for the job.

The 54-year-old MP for Dartmouth–Cole Harbour confirmed on Facebook on Sunday that he is now part of an increasingly growing group of candidates to replace the late Jack Layton.

He later appeared at a Darmouth restaurant with supporters, including Premier Darrell Dexter and a group of provincial cabinet ministers.

Chisholm touted his experience as former leader of the NDP in Nova Scotia in the late 1990s. He led the provincial party to a breakthrough in Nova Scotia's 1998 election, when the party won 19 seats in the legislature and achieved Official Opposition status.

The unilingual candidate says he has started taking French courses and expects to learn the language. He was only able to speak a few words of French in response to reporters' questions.

In launching his campaign, he said in an online statement that New Democrats are at a "a pivotal point in their history."

CBC News

I'm not sure if I would call him a 'serious' candidate- perhaps in a NDP that was still an anglo party but less so when it has dominence in Quebec.

You can't except a party that represents 78.6% of Quebeckers to have a unilingual anglo as their leader in parliament.

That said I do believe that Chisholm is a important candidate with a worthwhile candidacy. It helps increases his name recognition and for the NDP, I think its important to have a Alantic Canadian in the race. There is room to grow for the NDP in NS, NL and to a lesser extent NB.

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