Cullen’s new Opposition House Leader role good for riding

Cullen’s new Opposition House Leader role good for riding

SMITHERS - Good news for the Northwest is how MP Nathan Cullen is describing his new appointment as Opposition House Leader.

“I am excited and honoured to have the privilege of serving Canadians,” Cullen told regional journalists via teleconference during a break in a four-day riding tour.  “The Opposition House Leader is in charge of the party's day-to-day business in the House of Commons and also negotiates with the other parties on the business of the country.

“I’ll be working with our Leader daily to set the strategic direction of our questions and debate in Parliament, and also touching every piece of legislation the government brings in.  It is a position of influence within the party and Parliament and will give me even greater access to ministers in my fight for the riding.”

Cullen told journalists it will be his job to stop the worst legislation from happening and work with the government to find ways to bring about good laws that will benefit all Canadians.

He acknowledged the challenges of serving as House Leader during a majority government but noted the position plays to his strengths as a facilitator, consensus-builder and his proven ability to work across party lines.

Cullen expects the first bills that will come before Parliament will deal with the “dangerous undoing” of the National Energy Board’s authority, an issue of particular interest to Skeena-Bulkley Valley because of the Northern Gateway Pipeline project Joint Review Panel currently underway.

Cullen said that one of his early goals will be to encourage more public participation in the governing of Canada.  He hopes to dispel the “inside the bubble” mindset that historically has led to the affairs of Parliament being largely contained within a tight Ottawa bubble.

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