"Surrey-Newton has been neglected for a long time. The people of Surrey, I believe, should be involved in decision making. There are lots of things that need to be done in Surrey-Newton: infrastructure development, jobs for youth, and involving the community. That is what I will focus on." - Harpreet Singh Conservative Party candidate for Surrey-Newton
1. Why are you contesting as a Conservative Party candidate for Surrey-Newton at the Federal Election 2019?
Surrey-Newton has been neglected for a long time. The people of Surrey, I believe, should be involved in decision making. There are lots of things that need to be done in Surrey-Newton: infrastructure development, jobs for youth, and involving the community. That is what I will focus on.
2. What are your campaign promises?
My campaign promise is very simply: transparency, honesty, integrity and involving the community in decision making. Honesty and integrity are the hallmarks of my career, for which everyone knows me. Being a journalist, that is what I have been doing. Even in politics, I will be focusing on these aspects because I believe we need to become role models if we want to involve youth. That is where we are lacking – we need to walk the talk. My campaign promise is recognizing that the job of an MP is not just to go to functions or provide letters for immigration, which is another issue that needs to be tackled. Our government believes that it has been handled lopsided by this government, which needs to be put to a stop. We believe in a fair, orderly, and compassionate immigration system, where we will get in international students, those who want to work under work permits, those who are under the skilled category, parents and grandparents. The focus will be balance.
3. What is your stand on Justin Trudeau’s carbon tax?
Our party believes that it is a tax grab and we will scrap that tax. We are already paying high amounts for the cost of gasoline and heating bills. To add carbon tax onto these expenses makes no sense because it is not being used to fight climate change. Climate change cannot be fought by imposing taxes. We believe that it should be the other way around. We will be investing in cleaner technologies and use our influence as a world power to ask countries like India and China to reduce their global emissions. We, as Canadians, only make up 1.4% of the total world usage when it comes to carbon emissions. We will use our influence on other countries, which Justin Trudeau has failed to do as a result of high failed foreign policies with India, China and USA.
4. What is your perspective on pipelines? Do you or do you not promote them?
We are in favor of pipelines because Canada cannot succeed economically otherwise. The consumption of oil is increasing day by day. It does not make sense to get oil from Saudi Arabia, which comes not from air, but by ship – ships use energy. Basically, we will use pipelines to get our oil and our leader has already proposed an energy corridor, which will link the West and East. We are also concerned about the environment. Technology has advanced a lot. I believe that pipelines and the environment are not opposing things; they should go hand in hand. We will focus on using the best technology for pipelines.
5. How do you feel about lowering taxes for working parents?
Hardworking and struggling moms and dads in Canada should be given incentives. We have already announced that maternal benefits will be tax-free. We want to live within our means. Our government believes that borrowing and spending money will not make a difference. Consider that our deficit, right now, has increased to $20 Billion. More deficits mean more taxes on common people. Our government will live within our means and we will give that benefit to moms and dads by lowering taxes.
6. Traffic is an increasing concern in our community. What is your take?
Infrastructure development is the answer to our progress. We will be investing in our infrastructure to provide the best facilities for an increasing population. When we talk about climate change, lots of people would opt for transit or Skytrain. For that, they need something. If we cannot provide the right infrastructure, the only option left is to use cars. We will invest in infrastructure development of having more transit and better facilities, in conjunction with the municipalities. For example, Surrey is demanding a Skytrain till Langley. We will not impose our thoughts on the community but give the community what it wants. We will work in tandem with the municipalities and provide them with the money required.
7. Crime has always been a dominant problem. How will you address it?
Firstly, I will spend money on educating the community as to why we should work together to get our children back on track. The environment has become such that they get enticed by criminals and gangs. It is important to spend money on organizations that are doing well for the community and provide them with resources. The second aspect is rehabilitation. If someone has gone into this, they should be given chances to come back. Thirdly, we will be toughening up laws so that criminals are not just let out on parole. A strong message needs to be sent to criminals. A Conservative government will take action to make it easier for police to target gang members and put them behind bars. Our plan will end automatic bail for those accused of gangs crime, create tougher sentences for violent gang crime and make it easier for prosecutors to convict known gangs. We will need up our border enforcement to stop drugs and guns from being smuggled into Canada.
8. What are your thoughts about safety in the community, the job market, and overall community development?
So many parents are sending children abroad for medicine, law or engineering. Why not over here? I will be a voice for the common man and raise such concerns. We need to have more spaces in Canada for our children to study, work and get jobs here. Secondly, the issue of affordability is apparent; it is difficult for a person to survive in the Lower Mainland. A recent report says that most new immigrants and refugees are going homeless. We need to work on our infrastructure before we call people here. No job is bad. However, if we have a doctor coming here, he or she should go in his own field. If he or she is becoming a security guard or driving a taxi, we are wasting talent. We, as Canadians, need to start thinking on those grounds whereby we are able to firstly provide jobs to our children studying here, who are now not even getting jobs after graduation or post-graduation. Then, our international responsibility should be looked into. There are so many elders and veterans that are going homeless, but we are giving money to other nations. I do not say we should deflect from our international responsibilities, but we should look into our home first. Our government will prioritize our elders, veterans, youth, the middle-class moms and dads first. Then, we will look into our international obligations being met.
9. What are some changes Surrey-Newton needs to for further growth? What does the region lack?
The most important thing is that people are losing faith in politicians. My focus will be on honesty and integrity so that we can restore that faith in the democratic process. I will be involving the public in decision making through town hall meetings. So, public faith in democracy can only be restored by becoming a role model yourself and not bringing in 'dirty politics'.
Secondly, a pressing issue people are talking about is public safety. So many youngsters have passed away because of drugs and gang violence. My focus will be on the particular aspect of giving priority to the concern surrounding prime. Our party believes that the victims should not suffer. Rather, the culprits should be taken care of. The third point is that of affordability. It has become so expensive to live here as so many taxes have been imposed by Justin Trudeau, especially for small businesses that are actually boosters for the economy. Our party believes in putting more money in the pockets of people by giving them tax incentives. People should be deciding how to spend; the government should not have a role in that. We will restore many of the taxes incentives stopped by Justin Trudeau, with examples being income sprinkling and child-tax benefits.
10. Why should people vote for you or the party?
We cannot afford Justin Trudeau for another four years. Our foreign policy, economy, immigration policy and relations with foreign governments are at their lowest. We cannot afford to have Justin Trudeau again because he has already brought our country to a disaster, where our deficit has gone to $20 billion. There will be even more taxes for common people. We need to bring Canada back on rail. By living within our means, our party will ensure more money in the pockets of people, fighting climate change with cleaner technology (not taxes), and a foreign policy where people respect us. The time where people used to look up to Canada has gone by. Relations with China, India and USA need to be improved. We will use our diplomatic skills to bring back Canada. Finally, democracy thrives where people are involved. We will focus on public decision making.
Photo: AMaster Media