Editors note this copy of Danny Williams campaign launch speech
Shared by: tamir13
Editor’s note: this copy of Danny Williams’ campaign launch speech was provided to the CBC by the PC Party of Newfoundland and Labrador. It has been converted to a pdf format. Thank you, and good afternoon everyone. Almost two years ago I started building upon the team Ed Byrne had already assembled to represent the interests of Newfoundlanders and Labradorians. As I look at the people who are able to join me today, and think of the others who are working in their districts or have made a commitment to seek the nomination, I am extremely proud of who we are and what we have to offer. This team, our team, represents a real alternative to the current government. And a new government is needed, because after fifteen years, it’s time for a change in Newfoundland and Labrador. It’s time for real leadership. It’s time for the new approach. For months now, the Roger Grimes government has been desperately searching for a single issue upon which they can fight this election when they should have been governing our province. First it was the fishery, then it was our relationship with Ottawa, and most recently it was automobile insurance. Well, we won’t play that game. This election is too important to be about any one single issue. We will make it about all the issues that are important to the people of our province. It will be about making a meaningful improvement to the every day lives of Newfoundlanders and Labradorians so that we can live with dignity and self-respect through self reliance. It will be about having a good job and having access to health care when we need it. It will be about providing our children with an education that allows them to compete for jobs and stay home in this province where they belong. Above all, this election will be about the real leadership this province needs to capture the opportunities that are before us so that we finally achieve our true potential. Ladies and gentlemen, these are the issues of the real world. These are the issues that have been ignored by the Roger Grimes administration. And these are the issues we will fight for. Our people deserve no less and should expect no less. And under a Danny Williams led government, they will get no less. I believe the time has now come to take control of our destiny, to chart our own course to economic prosperity. That is what I stand for, it’s what our team stands for, it’s what the Progressive Conservative Party of Newfoundland and Labrador stands for. Today, we are presenting you with a plan to move us in that direction, a plan to get real results. It took us months and months to develop this blue print for the future, and I am very proud of it. I call our plan the new approach, because it means focusing on the important issues in new and different ways, and making decisions for the right reasons, not political reasons. It starts with helping those who need help most. Seniors, students and many others will benefit from our plan to immediately reduce provincial income taxes for low income earners. Our plan will provide quality health care to Newfoundlanders and Labradorians when they need it, ensuring that there are more doctors and nurses in areas that are presently under-serviced. Patients will have access to a primary health care provider twenty four hours a day, seven days a week. And waiting times for diagnostic and treatment procedures will be reduced to times that physicians deem acceptable. Our seniors, those who have given so much to our province and asked for so little in return, want to be independent, and to live in their own homes. We will give them that independence by expanding home care services and increasing supportive housing alternatives. We will provide our children with a higher quality education by setting a maximum class size, beginning in our primary schools where they will not exceed 25 students per class. We will also increase computer literacy and reduce disruptive behavior so that our children have a healthy learning environment. We will also set performance standards to ensure our children’s education meets or exceeds what is being provided in schools in the province and the country. And to ensure our children’s safety, we’re going to upgrade and improve our school buses. We will freeze tuition for post-secondary students and make the remission process more efficient and accessible so that our young people have better opportunities to stay in the province that they so dearly love. And I can assure you, we will grow our economy by creating an environment that allows businesses to set-up shop and expand, creating meaningful employment for Newfoundlanders and Labradorians as we go. There will be a strong, vibrant and sustainable fishery. There will be new opportunities in the Information Technology sector. And we will open our doors to the world with an ever-growing tourism industry. The one area where I believe I can most help Newfoundlanders and Labradorians is through job creation and economic development. That’s my background, and I now want to apply those experiences to the government of Newfoundland and Labrador. I want to create new industries to slow down and eventually stop outmigration. I want to give our rural communities a reason to believe that our way of life can not only survive but prosper. I want to give them hope and confidence that we can maintain and nurture our culture, our heritage and our pride. Our plan for economic growth will provide a new approach to resource development that puts Newfoundlanders and Labradorians first. We will identify and capture opportunities for secondary processing whenever possible. No more give-aways. We will give Newfoundland and Labrador back to Newfoundlanders and Labradorians. Rather than using our resources to create jobs for Manitobans, Ontarians, and Quebecers, our resources will be used to create jobs for our own people. We are no longer prepared to sit idly by while our resources benefit the rest of Canada and leave us with a mere pittance of their true value. And ladies and gentlemen, our plan will provide a new approach to dealing with the federal government. While others have remained silent until it became politically opportune to be heard, we will be aggressive and provide a strong voice that says very clearly changes are needed. We will lay out a rational and reasonable plan that cannot be dismissed. I will fight to ensure that we are heard. I say enough is enough. It’s time for real leadership. It’s time for the new approach. It’s time for a change. And that change begins right here, right now. This is our opportunity to stand up and be counted, to seize control of our own destiny, to make a real difference. On a personal note, I’ve enjoyed more success in the business world than I ever dreamed possible. And I did it entirely in Newfoundland and Labrador, creating thousands of jobs for Newfoundlanders and Labradorians along the way. I have proven that it can be done, and if it can be done in the private sector, it can be done in government. It hasn’t been easy. It takes a tireless work ethic, personal sacrifice and an unwavering commitment. I’m prepared to offer that to the people of Newfoundland and Labrador because it’s now time for me to give something back to the province that has given me and my family so much, to initiate real change and make a meaningful difference. But I can’t do that alone. That’s why I have spent more than two years assembling a first class team that has the energy, passion and commitment required to make real changes and meaningful improvements to the every day lives of Newfoundlanders and Labradorians. We have a combination of proven legislators and new players that will bring innovative ideas to the table. This team presents a stark contrast and a strong alternative to a tired and weakened government that has been in office for almost 15 years. We are ready to provide Newfoundlanders and Labradorians with the change that they so desperately want and deserve, and have the energy, passion and commitment required to work on your behalf. But ladies and gentlemen, I want to be very clear. While we have developed a policy document that provides that new approach, there are no magic solutions or quick fixes to the problems facing this province. These problems did not occur overnight and they cannot be fixed overnight. But with the team we have assembled, with real leadership and the new approach, these problems can be solved and will be solved. Together we have a vision of Newfoundland and Labrador, in control of our own destiny, united for the benefit of all. That is my commitment to Newfoundland and Labrador, that is our commitment to Newfoundland and Labrador. By working with you, a Danny Williams led government will make a difference. A change of government will make a real difference to our province, our home, our families and our future. On October twenty first, I respectfully ask for your support for a mandate to provide the people of Newfoundland and Labrador with real leadership and the new approach for a better future. Thank you.