History suggests the NDP and Greens have little chance of winning either of Kelowna's two federal ridings on Monday.
But history is so over, Green candidate Travis Ashley says.
"I don't feel like the underdog," Ashley, a 26-year-old father of two said an election forum Wednesday morning. "We're making waves, taking great steps forward."
Ashley styled himself a "truth-teller" who enjoys being honest with Canadians about the need to transition to a low-carbon economy. He said he was tired of "half truths and needless gibbering" engaged in by other candidates.
Fellow Green candidate Robert Mellalieu also mocked what he said was the other parties' insistence on the use of the word 'You' in their election campaigning.
A better approach, Mellalieu said, would be for governments to look seven generations into the future when making important public policy decisions.
At the forum sponsored by the Kelowna Chamber of Commerce, the Greens said they would not proceed with the twinning of the Trans-Mountain pipeline, and would invest more in environmentally friendly technologies. The biggest misconception about their party, they said, is that was it was only focused on the environment.
"Our whole platform is about the economy," Ashley said, explaining a Green government would reduce red tape for business and abolish tuition for students so they enter the workforce debt-free.
Supporting the construction of pipelines, Melllalieu said, was an irresponsible use of public money in a sunset industry, akin to "investing in Blockbuster Video."
For her part, NDP candidate Joan Phillip stressed the party's goals of introducing a national Pharmacare prescription drug plan, supporting more day care spaces, building 500,0000 new homes and increasing seniors' benefits
"We need a government that has heart and will work for all of us, not just the top one per cent," Phillip said.
Justin Kulik, the other local NDP candidate, did not attend the forum.
People's Party of Canada candidates John Barr and Allan Duncan said they favoured reducing the size of government, building the Trans-Mountain pipeline, doing more to ensure and protect freedom of speech, and reducing immigration.
If the new party can get a foothold in Parliament, Duncan said, it could ensure these issues were given some regard by whichever party wins the election. In much the same way, he said, the fledgling Reform Party in the late '80s and early '90s had helped to persuade the Liberal government of the need to practice fiscal restraint.
Independent candidate Daniel Joseph drew a laugh when he said, "We all know I'm not getting elected". But he said he entered the race, in part, to ensure there were discussions of issues like homelessness and the opioid crisis.
Silverado Socrates, the other independent candidate, said she believed in "peace through tourism."
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