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Election Briefs
Western Arctic stumping begins

Katherine Hudson
Northern News Services
Published Wednesday, April 6, 2011

SOMBA K'E/YELLOWKNIFE - With the federal election less than one month away, federal party candidates for the Western Arctic are busy campaigning throughout the NWT. Yellowknifer will follow the candidates throughout the campaign. Here's where they are this week:

Lee knocks on some doors

Conservative candidate Sandy Lee couldn't be reached for comment but according to a member of her campaign team, Mark Johnson, Lee kicked off her campaign in Deline this past weekend, and spent Sunday and Monday knocking on doors in Yellowknife.

"(Tuesday) she's off to Hay River to meet with some folks, knock on some doors," said Johnson.

Lee is expected back in Yellowknife today for her official campaign kick-off at her campaign headquarters at Centre Ice Plaza.

Johnson said Lee will remain in Yellowknife Thursday and then head to Norman Wells and Tulita until Sunday before returning to Yellowknife.

Handley heading to Inuvik

Joe Handley, the Western Arctic Liberal candidate, said he's been busy knocking on doors throughout Yellowknife over the weekend and into this week.

Handley held a campaign kick-off Tuesday at his campaign headquarters and will stay in the capital city through Thursday before heading to Inuvik on Friday.

"I'm planning to go up to Inuvik and that area on Friday morning and back on Sunday and up to the Sahtu next week," said Handley.

Greens ramping up campaign in Yellowknife

Green Party candidate Eli Purchase said his days have been filled with strategizing for his campaign.

"We're planning out exactly what we're going to be doing for the month, a little bit of getting out into Yellowknife and meeting with some people, talking with people on the street, and a little bit of door-knocking," said Purchase.

In the upcoming week, he will continue campaigning in Yellowknife and then he hopes to hit the road for Hay River on Thursday.

"As long as the ice road in Providence holds up, I'm going to be going down to Hay River from Thursday to Saturday or Sunday," said Purchase, after which, he will return to Yellowknife.

Tories cutting northern spending: Bevington

NDP incumbent Dennis Bevington was at his campaign headquarters yesterday where he blasted what he deems are cuts to northern programs in the main estimates of the Conservative government's budget, revealed just before the election call.

"They're really significant," he said from his constituency office in Yellowknife on Tuesday.

He said the Conservatives plan to cut more than $300 million in spending toward the North, including $17 million from community development funding and $219 million from programs belonging to the Department of Indian and Northern Affairs.

Last week, Bevington spent most of his time in Yellowknife, getting the campaign organized and opening his campaign office last Wednesday.

Over the weekend, he spent time at both spring festivals in Lutsel K'e and Fort Providence before heading to Hay River and Fort Smith. On Monday, Bevington spent time in Fort Resolution and Hay River before heading back to Yellowknife yesterday

"Our plans are to go through the Sahtu and that will be most of our focus this week," he said.

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