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PMO高级助理亮相Markham-Thornhill,数名华裔候选人立即宣布退出
Parachuting practice fuels malcontent within the party

联邦自由党曾数次被指空降明星候选人至本党的要塞选区。而在总理办公室高级助理Mary Ng决定在非其居住地的Markham-Thornhill选区寻求补选提名后,数名潜在华裔候选人立即宣布退出角逐。据Bob Mok称,这种空降候选人行为会加剧自由党内部的不满情绪。
The federal Liberals had faced several allegations of parachuting star candidates to the Liberals’ strongholds over the past. But after Mary Ng, a top PMO aide decided to seek by-election nomination in Markham-Thornhill -- a riding she does not reside in, several potential nominees with Chinese heritage withdrew immediately from the race. Bob Mok writes that such a practice may fuel malcontent within the party.
 
 
 
最近,特鲁多总理迅速发起五场补选以填补加国议会的议席空缺。这些补选将于2017年4月3日,即于联邦保守党选出新党领以取代临时党领安布罗斯的5月之前不久举行。
 
Recently, five by-elections were called quickly by Prime Minister Trudeau to fill vacancies for MP's in our Parliament. These elections are to take place on April 3, 2017 and shortly before the Conservative Party of Canada chooses its new leader in May, replacing interim leader Rona Ambrose.

 
特鲁多的策略简单明了,即给忙于党领竞选的反对党一个措手不及,以为自由党增强多数优势,并为自由党明星候选人日后提升至内阁职位提供更多机会。
 
Mr. Trudeau's strategy is simple – to catch the opposition party off-guard and in the middle of their leadership race and to provide better chances for his party to increase their majority, and for his star candidates to be promoted to Cabinet appointments later.
 
 
明星候选人大多都是通过“空降”至被政党牢牢把持的选区得以胜选。由于“空降”候选人并不居住在进行选举的选区,因此往往并不熟悉当地的问题和选民的需要。在没有可靠而又出色的本地候选人参选,或是政党想让某位候选人比在其当地选区更容易胜出时,尽管采取“空降”策略是必要之举,但却未必完全合乎道德规范。因为这违背了从选区选出一名“当地”的,了解选区事宜之代表以充当议会与选区选民之桥梁的初衷。
 
Star candidates are mostly elected through “parachuting” into strong ridings held by the party. A “parachute” candidate is one who does not live in the riding where the election is held and therefore are typically unfamiliar with local issues and needs of the riding assigned. Parachuting is necessary but not necessarily ethical when there is no reliable talent indigenous to the riding or that the party wishes to give a candidate an easier election than would happen in one's own home area. “Parachuting” a candidate is contrary to the principle of having a “local” (residing) representative. That concept is to have a candidate who understands all the local issues to serve as an effective bridge between the Parliament and the riding constituency. 
 
 
联邦自由党“空降”候选人参选的历史由来已久。以下只是其中一些例子:2013年,弗里兰被空降至可稳获议席的多伦多中心选区参加补选,以填补李博离职后留下的议席空缺。尽管弗里兰当时居住在纽约市,但她仍然赢得了此次补选。2005年,叶礼庭被空降至席位安全的Etobicoke-Lakeshore选区并成为候选人。在此之前,时任国会议员兼国务部长奥古斯汀宣布她不会再寻求连任,在1993年,奥古斯汀亦是被克雷蒂安空降至同一选区参选。

The Liberal Party has a history of “parachuting” candidates into ridings. Just to give our readers some examples: Chrystia Freeland was parachuted into the safe seat of Toronto Centre in a 2013 by-election due to Bob Rae's departure. Freeland was living in New York City at the time but she won nevertheless. In 2005, Michael Ignatieff was parachuted into the safe riding of Etobicoke-Lakeshore and acclaimed as a candidate. This was made possible after the existing MP and a Minister of State, Jean Augustine, who was also parachuted into the same riding in 1993 by Jean Chretien, announced that she would be one of those MPs not seeking re-election.
 
 
Markham-Thornhill选区的补选亦对何为“空降”候选人做出了解释。居住在现由自由党新秀国会议员蒙迪奇诺代表的安省Eglinton-Lawrence选区,身为总理办公室高级助理的Mary Ng是最先宣布角逐Markham-Thornhill选区补选提名的候选人之一。在该选区的补选日期确定后,Ng随即便离职并启动了竞选网站,同时她也得到了许多政客的支持,而其他一些潜在候选人则立即宣布退出角逐。
 
The Markham-Thornhill riding clearly demonstrates what “parachuting” is all about. One of the first to declare her nomination for the riding candidacy was Mary Ng, a top PMO aide who lives in the riding of Eglinton-Lawrence, Ont., currently represented by rookie Liberal MP Marco Mendicino. As soon as the by-election date was set, Ms. Ng was off and running with a web site complete with endorsement from many politicians and other potential nominees who withdrew immediately from the race. 
 
 
在这些退出的潜在候选人中,有三位华裔候选人,他们分别是律师Scott Au,女企业家孙晓明Sophia Ming Sun,以及律师江邦固Bang-Gu Jiang。此外,安省国际贸易部长陈国治(之前亦被视为潜在候选人,但他已宣布无意参选),万锦市议员Amanda Collucci,旺市市议员Sandra Racco以及万锦-康山自由党协会执行副总裁Francis Yuen也都支持Ng参选。

Three of these potential nominees with Chinese heritage were identified as lawyer Scott Au, businesswoman Sophia Ming Sun, and lawyer Bang-Gu Jiang. Ontario International Trade Minister Michael Chan (previously considered a potential candidate who declared his intention not to run), Markham Councillor Amanda Collucci, Vaughan Councillor Sandra Racco, and Francis Yuen, executive vice-president of the Markham-Thornhill Liberal Association, have also endorsed Ms. Ng.

 
一名潜在候选人(Juanita Nathan)对自由党所设定的可参与2017年3月4日提名投票的新党员登记截止日期提出质疑。据Nathan称,由于自由党将登记截止日追溯至2月14日,也就是她开始登记新党员名字的前一天,从而导致她发展的逾2,000名新党员被认定为无投票资格。但是自由党官员称,该党一直都是光明正大行事,在前国会议员麦加廉宣布离开议会接受加拿大驻华大使的任命直至登记截止日之间有长达五周的时间。Nathan后来亦宣布退出。

One potential nominee (Ms. Juanita Nathan) was concerned about the cutoff date to register new party members for a nomination vote that was to take place on March 4, 2017. She claimed that more than 2,000 people she has registered as Liberals are considered ineligible because the party retroactively set the registration cut-off date for Feb. 14 — the day before she started entering names into the system. However, the Party Officials stated that all is fair and square and that there was a five-week gap between the date when the previous MP John McCallum announced his departure from Parliament to accept an appointment as Ambassador to China. Ms. Nathan withdrew from the nomination race.
 
 
最终,Ng在只有两名候选人参与的提名角逐中获胜,而她的总得票数也只有186票。虽然此举可能并没有违背自由党的提名规则,但众所周知在政治形象代表一切。如果一名候选人被认为以不公平手段获胜,那该名候选人以及政党的声誉都会因此蒙污。“被指定”的候选人或许已得以胜出,但却令党内滋生不满情绪。不信任感会蔓延至整个政党队伍,给政党内部和谐造成持久不良影响。

In the end, only 2 nominees fought for the candidacy and Ms. Ng won. The total vote count was only 186. The party's nomination rules may not have been broken but as we all know, but perception is everything in the political arena. If a candidate is not perceived to be selected fairly in a contest, both the candidate's reputation and that of the party's will be tarnished. The “anointed” candidate may have won but the seed of malcontent within the party is sowed. Mistrust will creep into the party ranks and it may have lasting consequences for the party's internal harmony, lasting well into the future.  
 

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