Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Nenshi for mayor

As my life has been pretty uneventful and well, somewhat boring, I thought I'd write about the Mayoral election that just happened yesterday.
Our mayor for the last, oh, 8 years or so, has stepped down and Calgary has had the biggest race for this position in my entire life. There were 15 candidates running in total, however it was primarily a race between 3 of them; Ric McIver, Barb Higgins and Naheed Nenshi. All from different backgrounds and running very different campaigns. The advanced poles were showing a difference of 1 or 2 percent as to who would win, and it was a fight up until the very last minute. Including the day of voting were Nenshi was actually out on the Anderson walk way overpass with signs, balloons and banners waving as passer-byer's drove by. In the end, with a total of 40% of the votes, Nenshi, won the election and on Monday will be sworn in as mayor. Mciver had 32% of the votes, and Higgins had 26%. We had a total of 10% more voters out then in our last election in 2007, and a couple of the voting stations in the SE actually ran out of ballots!! More ballots were brought in however at one the stations the courier could not get in, so some people were turned away and could not cast their vote. There were complaints about this as they still wanted to vote, however there were so few people that didn't get to cast a vote, that it wouldn't have made a difference in the outcome anyways. Pretty amazing that we had that many people out voting, which I think is great. It is a right, and a privilege, and no one should have any excuse to not vote.
Back to Nenshi, he is 38, born in Tasmania, grew up in Calgary, went to U of C, as well as Harvard and has spent the rest of his career in Calgary. He is also the first Muslim to be elected mayor in all of Canada. He has made National news and I really hope he can bring change to our amazing city. He has a lot of work on his plate, our 60 million dollar deficit, transportation and the airport tunnel, among many other things. He came from behind in the election and was considered the underdog, and he pulled through. He had his word and name out there, and campaigned everywhere, including the University which I think was a big advantage for him. Even though he was not my electoral choice, I am fully behind him and really hope he leads Calgary in a positive way. Not only is he a new face at city hall, there are 5 new alderman's that have been elected. City hall is going to be completely different and I hope these new faces, as well as the old, can lead this changing city in the right direction!

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