On PACs (Political Action Committees)
It’s true. I’ve been endorsed by two PACs (political action committees). Calgary’s Future and Look Forward.
In understand that under the current election finance system I benefit from their endorsement through paid advertisements.
The Sprawl has all the info on who’s who, I encourage you to stop here, read their post, and then come back to finish. https://www.sprawlalberta.com/third-party-advertisers-pacs-calgary-edmonton-municipal-election
Why I engaged with PACs questionnaires.
Across this city people have special interests, their jobs, the environment, sport. As candidates we’ve received countless (no really, I’ve lost count) surveys from BILD, to Bike Calgary, to the Weaselhead Preservation Society, to not-really-a-pac-but-acting-like-one Common Sense Calgary. Fluoride, smoking cessation, arts, climate, women in politics. I’ve shared my answers to these on my own site.
My stance, if volunteers or organizations are going to take the time to ask questions, I’m going to take the time to answer. That is the role of the councillor, to respond to people and groups. I’ve seen many of these surveys go unanswered by other candidates.
Here are my responses to the Calgary's Future survey.
PACs are no different. They sent out surveys, they requested interviews, and I was honest in my positions, values, and beliefs. My platform and vision were set before we engaged. I didn’t bend my answers knowing their slant. I didn’t want an endorsement based on a false sense of my vision for Calgary. I have spent the last 10 years of my career building high trust relationships. I’m not about to throw that away.
If I could do it all over again, would I engage? I don’t know to be honest. At this point it’s caused more headache than gain from what I can tell. I’m having to defend my integrity when up until a month ago, it spoke for itself. So I’m laying it out here, again.
Where I Stand on Endorsements
No matter how much money any third party advertiser/political action committee spends endorsing me as a candidate, my go forward actions will not be any different than without an endorsement. My values cannot be bought.
*If* I vote to give unions a raise, that’s because I believe in paying people a living wage that matches inflation. In my own small company I paid my employees well about a living wage. I have never taken a job that paid me less than a living wage.
*If* I vote to preserve jobs, that’s because Calgarians are asking for service levels that require staffing. Transit, emergency services, waste collection. It’s convenient to talk down about public service workers, a job so many in the private sector wouldn’t dream of doing because they know there is limited earning potential.
Advocating for change
I would love to see PACs disappear from the political process. I will continue to advocate for financial reform in our electoral process. Specifically around PACs I would like to see:
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