The Soapbox: In the battle for hearts and minds, the Sask. Party is winning

Justin Crann
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They say a picture speaks a thousand words.

Justin Crann

An image contrasting the NDP convention of last weekend with the Saskatchewan Party nomination meeting earlier this week would have spoken volumes.

Last weekend, the NDP brought federal leader Thomas Mulcair and approximately 350 people in to Mosaic Place.

The party spoke at length about its plans heading into the upcoming provincial election.

Mulcair declared confidently that the federal New Democrats could secure a majority of Saskatchewan, and in turn would bring their strength to bear for Cam Broten’s Saskatchewan New Democrats.

The fact that the Moose Jaw ridings are targets for the Saskatchewan New Democrats is perhaps this election’s worst-kept secret.

But the turnout at the Saskatchewan Party nomination meeting for Moose Jaw North — a contested battle between incumbent MLA Warren Michelson and Shelley Jones — is any indicator, the New Democrats may have their work cut out for them.

There were approximately 500 chairs on the floor.

During the candidates’ speeches, the Jubilee rooms of Heritage Inn were standing room only.

Perhaps equally important as the sheer number of people on hand for the meeting was the wide variance in demographic.

This wasn’t just a gathering of grandparents.

The Saskatchewan Party nomination had more than a few young men and women — including local entrepreneur Joel Pinel — in the room.

It is said that politics are largely a game of hearts and minds: capturing the former and sating the latter.

The New Democrats will have an up-hill battle on both counts, it would seem, based solely on the Sask. Party’s clear head start.

Justin Crann can be reached at 306-691-1265 or follow him on Twitter @J_Crann

Organizations: Saskatchewan New Democrats, Saskatchewan Party, Sask. Party NDP Heritage Inn

Geographic location: Moose Jaw North, Saskatchewan

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