After raising the issue for the second time in three days in the House of Commons, New Democrat MP Jean Rousseau (Compton–Stanstead) finally forced answers from the Conservative government, Thursday afternoon. This time, the Conservatives could no longer pretend they didn’t know what the MP was talking about. The news was mentioned countless times in the national media, and the MP asked to meet with the government in writing to discuss the issue. Rousseau’s question couldn’t have been clearer.
“Last Tuesday, the Transport Minister was obviously overwhelmed by a simple question on the wind turbine project at Smugglers Hill Farm, across the border from the town of Stanstead, Vermont. He was so confused, or not listening, that he thought I was talking about a project in Quebec,” said Rousseau in question period today.
“Can the foreign affairs minister confirm that he is now in contact with the mayor of Stanstead and that he’ll ensure that citizens’ concerns are heard on the other side of the border?”
Minister John Baird confirmed that he contacted the town of Stanstead, as well as the Government of Quebec and the American authorities. The Conservatives also promised to follow the issue closely. “Finally the government is doing something. This is excellent news,” said Jean Rousseau at the end of question period. “Our efforts on the ground and behind the scenes have begun to show results.”
Jean Rousseau intends to remain alert in the coming days. “We’ll ensure that John Baird’s promises translate into concrete actions until the citizens of Stanstead are heard. We won’t back down. That’s the work of an effective opposition in Ottawa,” he concluded.