Our Anniversary / Notre anniversaire

Some memories from the youth delegates. Certains souvenirs de les jeunes délégués...


My favorite moment at a convention occured when Gerard Kennedy gave his speech rallying the troups to support our leader Stéphane Dion. We were all sad that our hard work hadn't left us on top but we were so proud of Gerard.

Nous avons tous marche avec Gerard à M. Dion. C'était un temp d'unité et inspiration pour moi.

I will never forget the hugs, the smiles and the friends I made during that walk.


"I have two favourite convention moments. The first was Paul Martin's speech. It summed up what I thought was one of the most progressive, forward thinking governments, but was cut. Mr. Martin embarked on a very promising path - the Kelowna and Kyoto accords, a New Deal for cities, renewed federalism, same-sex marriage, a greater emphasis on Western Canada - and reminded us all that even though he was stepping down the responsibility rested on everyone else in the room to fulfill his governments mandate.

"The second, was Jean Chretien's speech. 'As you sit at home Mr. Harper, do not adjust your TV set. What you are seeing is real,' and 'Stephen. May I call you Steve, like your friend George Bush'."

- Zac Spicer

"What I remember most from Convention are the people. After months of organization by phone, e-mail, and internet, Convention finally gave everyone the chance to work face-to-face. For me, this meant getting to meet wonderful people like Delia Greco (pictured here).

The moment that stands out most to me was the third ballot. Seeing Rae drop, and knowing that we stood a great chance of winning on the next
ballot, was a mix of elation and sadness. My great friend, Richard Zussman, had poured his heart into the Rae campaign and was now in the
unenviable position of having to deal with great disappointment and rally his troops at the same time. Nonetheless, he picked himself up, got organized, and worked hard right up to the last vote.

Once the forth ballot came in, we knew that a page had truly been turned in the history of the Liberal Party. We've had our bumps over the last year, but nothing great ever comes easy."

- Ian Anderson


I spent a good 8 months working on Michael Ignatieff's campaign. From going to his events in the summer, to doing blog monitoring in the fall and organizing in Northern Ontario. I spent an entire week in Montreal getting there before the convention even started. I
think I worked harder that week than I have in anything I ever have. I really believed in Michael and did anything they asked, whether that meant unloading trucks, handing out t-shirts, talking to other delegates or taking part in rallies. It was kind of a frustrating week and I felt all my hard work was going unappreciated.

I still stuck it out because I really wanted Michael to win, even though I felt unnoticed. At the party after Michael lost, I was really disappointed. I went up to him to tell him I was proud to work for him. He told me that he wasn't good with names, but he recognized my face and that he knew I had been with him for a long time and that I worked really hard. I don't know if he really meant it, but after a long week of feeling unappreciated, the fact that Michael would make that kind of gesture with everything I'm sure he was feeling after losing the leadership race really made my convention.

- Justin Tetreault


"My favourite convention moment was gathering youth delegates from all camps to put on MHF shirts and cheer for her as she finished casting her first ballot. I wasn't a Findlay delegate, but nobody deserved a packed post-vote scrum more than she. As she lead us down one escalator, my candidate was on the one beside me heading up. Without flinching, he smiled at me, reached out for my hand, and then gave me a pat on the back as he continued up one escalator and I continued down the other.

"Je ne savais pas qui allait gagner à la fin. J' était fatigués et avec beaucoup de stress. Cette semaine a été difficile et parfois je voulais arrêter tout et sortie le Palais. Mais à ce moment-là, j'ai rappelé une leçon très importante à mes parents m'ont appris...

"Winning isn't everything -it's being a team player that counts."

- Denise Brunsdon


"What is it with political conventions and sushi? I love Japanese food as much as the next guy, but seven straight meals of rice, rolls, seaweed, spicy tuna and octopus? The sake wasn't bad, though...better than Red Bull! It got me through many a long night huddled over my laptop, tracking delegates.

Un gros merci au gentil bonhomme qui a inventé le Tide-to-Go. La sauce soja...mon ennemi mortel!"

- John Lennard



Conservatives and the death penalty

The Conservative government has decided to abandon Ronald Smith, a Canadian citizen, in his fight against a U.S. death sentence in the state of Montana. Though what he did was wrong, Mr. Smith deserves the support of the Canadian government, his most significant ally.

How does our treatment of Mr. Smith compare to our treatment of U.S. citizens in similar situations? Canadian law prohibits extradition of a U.S. citizen to an U.S. state in which they will face the death penalty. Why does the Conservative government apply a lesser standard to Canadians in the same position?

The reason is simple. The Conservative government wants to send a strong message to Canadians: if you commit a crime in the United States and you face the death penalty, don’t expect any help from Canada. Public Safety Minister Stockwell Day was clear on this point: “We want to preserve public safety here in Canada and that is our position.”

While we may not have the final say on his fate, we do have the power and the responsibility to express Canada’s principles. Canadian foreign policy should be a reflection of Canadian domestic policy, not U.S. domestic policy. We don’t execute people, and we should fight to protect our citizens who face that fate, no matter what they’ve done.

Canadians deserve better. They deserve a government that will stand up for them, through thick and thin, because they are Canadian.


Not okay

"This government, by stealth, is changing that long-standing policy to Canada to protect Canadians against the death-penalty abroad. You have a wholesale change of law to capital punishment without any debate whatsoever in Parliament." - Ujjal Dosanjh


Persons Day / Journée de l'affaire « Personnes »

Merci à Emily Murphy, Nellie McClung, Irene Parlby, Henrietta Muir Edwards, Louise McKinney et tous les autres féministes de la génération pour leur travail.

But let us never forget, as Mary Ellen Smith said, "The iron dropped into the souls of women in Canada when we heard that it took a man to decree that his mother was not a person."



A Party's party parting

The last summer student has officially gone back to school.

And although my heart is upset, my liver is relieved.

Looking back upon the summer, I have to say I’ve learned a lot from what I’ve done, from what I’ve seen, and from those with whom I did and saw those things.

I have learned that although St. John New Brunswick may be a beautiful city, one should not get a chance to find this out if driving from Halifax to Quebec City efficiently.

I have learned that Saskatchewan canola fields are a big deal if you haven’t grown up with them.

I have learned that North Bay and Montreal pubs share a common commitment to excellence in patron-oriented partying and laissez-faire dance floor policies that the rest of this country, sadly, lacks.

And I have learned that working for something you believe in, even if as seemingly inconsequential as a summer student program, is consequential. To spend a summer in Ottawa, with its unique opportunities, activities, and atmosphere, is an amazing experience. Moreover, to spend a summer growing and learning with an outstanding collection of earnest and dedicated Liberals will leave you with memories not to be forgotten.

To Elyse, Jay, Justin, Carlene, Dylan, Kelly, Meghan, Mary-Rose, Oz, Ian, and Colin, thank you.

And more importantly, to your fantastic bosses:

The Hon. Paul Martin, Hon. Dominic LeBlanc, Jamie Carroll, Andrew Telegdi, Hon. Mauril Bélanger, LRB, Senator Eggleton, Hon. Ken Dryden, Senator Hervieux-Payette, and Senator Jim Cowan,




Quebec Elections on Monday, volunteer today!

We had a great time helping out last week, and e-day is sure to be even more exciting. Email dbrunsdon@liberal.ca to join in a caravan from Toronto, Ottawa, or anywhere inbetween.



Guess who's coming to breakfast?

This week Liberal Leader Stephane Dion sat down with the Young Liberal Summer Students in the Office of the Leader of the Official Opposition. Over breakfast he thanked us for our months of service to the Liberal Party around Ottawa and discussed matters of importance such as the ageing population and post secondary education.

“He welcomed us and our ideas, and spent a great deal of time just listening” said Ozren Jungic from Vancouver B.C. “Dion recognizes youths’ ability to tell it like it is; and he was very accepting of that.”

Stephane took the time to lay out some of his thoughts on different ways of addressing post secondary education tuition. “He has put a lot of thought into the various combinations of possible actions” Said Meghan Pritchard who is studying abroad in Geneva at the Institut Universitaire de Hautes Etudes Internationales, “together we went over all the options and offered our input and tried to flesh out the best solution.”


Dion-Top of the World

La rencontre avec Stéphane Dion était une expérience de laquelle je me rappellerais pour longtemps. As a first-timer at the OYL’s Summer Fling at Nipissing University in North Bay Ontario, I was impressed by how welcome everyone made me feel. Stephane came in and greeted us as friends; he took the time to listen to our concerns. J’étais tellement impressionné avec le respect et la considération qu’il a donné a chaque question de notre groupe. His inspiring speech was a refreshing change from the rhetoric of the Harper government. A la fin de la journée, je savais exactement pourquoi je suis Liberal!

Once we were done with the day’s activities the group went to North Bay’s waterfront to celebrate with a cruise on Lake Nipissing. Awards were announced and I was thrilled when my riding club of Toronto Centre Federal was awarded Best Riding Club of the Year and its president, Chris Drew, was awarded as Best President of the Year, the awards solidified the sense of camaraderie between all of us. We are all excited to deliver a victory for Stephane Dion and the Liberal Party of Canada by getting Bob Rae elected in Toronto Centre in the upcoming by-elections.

Aaron GlynWilliams- Toronto Centre


Dion’s pledge motivates young women

“Stephane Dion’s pledge to have at least 1/3 female candidates in the next federal election has inspired women across the country to become strong Liberal candidates” said Caitlin Townsend VP- Youth of the Ontario Women’s Liberal Commission. “The importance of female participation in politics just became that much more important as Steven Harper has cut yet another woman out of cabinet.” It is for this reason that Townsend co-founded the Ontario Women’s Issues Committee (OWIC). The Young Women’s Issue Committee will have four major tenets: Young Women’s Policy, Community Outreach, Networking, and Mentorship.

Building on the vision of Stephane Dion, this committee and its federal counterpart hope to create a formal mentorship program with federal and provincial female caucus members across the country for young women who show interest in running as Liberal candidates in the future. “A Young Liberal Women’s mentorship program will help give young women the tools that they need to succeed in aspiring to become elected officials.” said Townsend this weekend at the official launch of the WIC at Nipissing University in North Bay Ontario.

To get involved in OYL Women’s Issues Committee contact Caitlin Townsend at kate_townsend@hotmail.com or to get involved in the National Young Liberal Women’s Association contact Denise Brunsdon at dbrunsdon@liberal.ca


Another one bites the dust

Just when you thought Stephen Harper couldn't care less about women's equality, it turns out he can! With a cabinet shuffle that booted one woman out, he's but a few more steps away from "Boys only" cabinet meetings. Just like elementary school, except with longer recesses.



Summer Fling in North Bay

This weekend the OYL held its 7th annual Summer Fling in North Bay Ontario. It was a great time and we had the distinct pleasure of being joined by our Leader Stephane Dion. The local media ate it up, check out these links below.

Here, here and here

Also, enjoy some of the highlights with this photo essay

Melissa, Elyse, Meghan, Mary-Rose and Matt on the boat cruise

Stephane Dion and Anthony Rota take questions

Ahoy there. Welcome to the Chief Commander

En Route to North Bay we celebrated Paul Martin Dr

Mike, Claire and Chike on Lake Nippising

Ian, Matt, Meghan,Kelly, Kate & Denise at Cecil's in down town North Bay

The local MP Anthony Rota at opening ceremonies


Harper snubs another Premier...

Stephen Harper came to the NWT for a three day visit...and failed to notify anyone but his riding association. Paranoid secrecy? Check. Disregarding regional leaders and politicians? Check. Half hearted environmental protection? Hey, he's three for three.


"Dion stayed. And fought."

I've been looking for an excuse to post this photo again, and then along came this article.

My fave line is, "Dion stayed. And fought. To any Conservative (or Liberal) who thinks this guy isn't tough enough to be prime minister, maybe you'd better think again."

Conservatives best wake up

The Winnipeg Sun, The Toronto Sun
Lorrie goldstein

The more I learn about Stephane Dion, the more I think it would be dumb of the Conservatives to underestimate him.

I know, according to the punditocracy, the federal Liberal leader is a dud-man-walking.

But they also told us Stephen Harper was a dud and Paul Martin was dynamite.


Two books suggest why Dion could be a serious threat in the next election.

The easier read is Linda Diebel's Stephane Dion, Against the Current, published earlier this year.

The tougher but more eye-opening one is 1999's Straight Talk -- a collection of Dion's speeches and writings when he was Canada's unity minister, following the near-disaster of the 1995 Quebec referendum.

Reading these pieces, you quickly discover that Dion is, like Harper, scary smart.

His speeches, letters and essays -- most given when he first entered Jean Chretien's cabinet on the advice of Chretien's wife, Aline -- literally demolish the separatists' arguments.

No wonder they hate him. He's smarter than they are. More>>


Atlantic Caucus: More than meets the eye

We've arrived in the fantastic city that is Moncton in search of Magnetic Hill. A phenomenon we were later told by a disgruntled Moncton Tourism employee (before attempting the hill itself) that is just an optical illusion. Talk about ruining the awe factor. Despite the authority that is the disgruntled employee, we plan to wikipedia this immediately upon arrival to Halifax for details, as we are sure that wiki is in fact the repository of all human knowledge.

There's a killer boardwalk at Magnetic Hill, on what looks like a large muddy puddle with beavertails and everything.... We might actually get a chance to eat something other than tim hortons which seems to be the roadtrip staple this week

The whole magnetic hill theme park thing is pretty cool...we just finished that and now we're driving across a covered bridge. We're buying into every touristy thing we can find here, I mean 5 bucks to stick a car in neutral and roll up/down a hill? Elyse just attempted her moose call in the magnetic hill zoo so I'm slightly worried about some sort of animal rampage so I'd better go...

Here's to hoping we don't get mauled by some rogue wildlife...



Boy Van Vs. Girl Van

Day two of the Atlantic caucus roadtrip palooza is off to a roaring start.

The boys' van is on a mission: get to Halifax, and the beach. We're having a great time in the process, though our trip seems to be much akin to the Tim Horton's commercial, where the characters stop no where but Timmy's.

Our dedication to the mission at hand is hampered by our slow cousin - a second van carrying the amazonian delegation to Atlantic Caucus. Taking a break from their tireless blog post write-a-thon in order to locate a desparately needed ATM machine and practice their "suck it" motioning and stomach punching, the occupants of the Van of the Valkeries, and their hapless vict...err... driver Jay "no water before bedtime" Telegdi have taken to unleashing their karate-riffic fists of fury - lethal weapons actually - on the unsuspecting New Brunswickers on the Transcanada east... One only hopes they gave warning first.

More on this timeless "odd couple" struggle between male vigilance, and female scattered disorganization once we get to Halifax.

All that we can say so far is this: the double XX chromosome contingent of our caravan simply didn't get it done.

Dylan Stogran- Ottawa Orleans


En chemin .... (Atlantic Caucus Diary Entry 1)

C'est jeudi matin et nous venons de commencer notre voyage de 15 heures à Halifax - nous sommes dix en tout dans deux camionettes. Nous arriverons bientôt à la ville du Québec et jusqu'à maintenant les blessés et les morts incluent seulement 1 oiseau, et 2 Blackberrys - mais on verra comment la voyage se déroulera....

Ça fait seulement trois heures et déja j'ai réussi à lire tous les revues People et Us Weekly que j'ai apporté. Heureuse à vous dire que je suis complètement informée sur les actualités au sujet de Lindsay Lohan, ainsi que le progrès du divorce de Britney. Je vous le jure, c'est vraiment un temps de fun fou ici.

Je vous promets tous que la fin de semaine deviendra beacoup plus intéressante bientôt donc revenez ici souvent pour des mises à jour non seulement sur les événements importants à Atlantic Caucus mais aussi sur le status de ma santé mentale.

- Carlene


Cause to celebrate

On Friday, July 20th, Liberals young and old gathered at the active nightlife destination, the Caprice. Tiffany Glover, a Vancouver Quadra dedicated Young Liberal, celebrated her birthday with an enjoyable combination of ingenuity and generosity. The reason was as Tiffany said, “It's my birthday and there's a by-election in the air: this is "A Reason to Celebrate"! Tiffany worked hard to promote the fundraising birthday party and posted the following message on facebook.com
“The recent announcement of a possible by-election in my riding has inspired me to try something new. Instead of giving out goodie bags at the end of the party as was tradition when I was young, all of the money raised from ticket sales will be donated to Joyce Murray's campaign to keep Vancouver-Quadra a Liberal riding.”
The hard work clearly paid off when $250.00 was raised for the Joyce Murray campaign. We want to congratulate Tiffany on an excellent idea, the hard work of following it through, and a very happy belated birthday.


Cano-lotta Fun

Never having been to the prairies I didn’t quite know what to expect, I’ve seen “Corner Gas” and “Little mosque on the prairies” but I still didn’t know what I was getting into. So when I travelled to Lake Diefenbaker Saskatchewan I was amazed by everything from the long and hazy highways to the neon yellow canola fields.

I learned a lot about prairie life and what it was like. As I sat on the porch overlooking Waka lake, watching the sky that CBC has been hailing, I listened to a man speak about his distrust for the government and that he would never vote Conservative again because of their handling of the Afghanistan issue. He said “that’s a deal breaker.” He asked how we Liberals were faring and if we were going to fix the mess that’s been happening of late. I offered my best and said that it was largely up to him and people like him to make that change on Election Day. So I think that I won over at least one person over the weekend.

Jay Telegdi- Bradford-West Gwilimbury, Ont.


Ontario Experiences Camp Wanna Be Free

Although disappointed after hearing from a lifer that highway bison sightings were a rarity, our time in the "friendly province" was overall quite good. Winnipeg airport was a breath of fresh air after experiencing the early morning rush at Pearson (6.30 is an ungodly hour).

Who knew that vast yellow fields were canola? We didn't. That's why we stopped just outside of Winnipeg to take some glamour shots in a bright yellow field and investigate this oddity. We were informed by a nice local about the crop we were standing in, who gave the trademark "friendly Manitoba" smile after learning we were from Ontario. He was only about a kilometer down the road when an unmentioned member of the Ontario team stripped down past his unmentionables to streak through the canola.

The PT Cruiser is a car designed for baby boomers cruising down the strip reminiscing about their earlier years, a fact that we learned first hand. It is not a car designed to travel Highway 16, the one lane “new Trans-Canada” highway from Winnipeg to Saskatoon rife with tractors, RVs and generally slow-moving, lane hogging vehicles. Passing required accelerating from a few kilometers back, but nevertheless we made it to Saskatoon in reasonable time.

Camp Wanna Be Free was everything and nothing like I expected. As an Ontario Summer Fling regular I was used to regimented weekends with pulling and politicking – capped off with a generous dose of hospitality each night. At CWBF things seemed to meld together; fun, politics, sessions and beach time were indistinguishable but it worked. Overall CWBF was a great experience, one that I hope to experience annually!



Down South America Way


"We are not going to say, 'Fix all your social, political and human-rights problems and only then will we engage in trade relations with you,' " Mr. Harper said at a joint news conference with Colombian President Alvaro Uribe. "That's a ridiculous position."

For the complete article check out:


Rubbing elbows with Dion

As a thank you for doing two days of phonebanking, the Ottawa Summer Students got to rub elbows last night at District 89 with Stephane Dion and many of the former leadership contestants last night. In attendance were Scott Brison, Bob Rae, Maurizio Bevilaqua, Martha Hall Findlay, Carolyn Bennett, Hedy Fry, Gerard Kennedy.

It was a good time, for a good cause with all money raised going toward paying off leadership debts.

With 2 similar events coming up next week in Scarborough and Mississauga, those in the GTA region will have the chance to do the same.

For more information visit the Liberal Party website. To buy tickets contact Diane Mitchell at(416) 921-2844 ex 341 or dmitchell@liberal.ca


I was recently out in Saskatoon, taking a French immersion course at the University of Saskatchewan. It was very interesting to see how there is a good Francophone community in Saskatoon and in Saskatchewan in general. It was great to see that most were fellow Liberals who were quite pleased with previous' Liberal governments' decisions to support Francophone communities outside of Quebec, and this support from Liberal governments has made it easier to keep their language and culture.

What was also interesting was to meet the general public in Saskatchewan who were extremely upset at PM Harper breaking his election promises on the Federal equalization payments towards the province. It was very evident in our talks with everyone that many will aggressively campaign against Mr. Harper in the upcoming election. Another issue that agitated many in the province was the income trust promise. Now most of us don't think of income trusts and investments when it comes to Saskatchewan, but because of former Finance Minister Ralph Goodale, haling from Regina, the issue is close to home. Many seeing how Mr. Goodale's integrity was viciously attacked by Mr. Harper and others, and then Mr. Harper himself breaking his promise, they saw that as something too big to allow to just pass by. Mr Goodale is a legend in Saskatchewan and is well known for his integrity and ethics throughout the province and of course throughout the country.

Overall, it was great to see fellow Liberals in Saskatoon and have many different discussions with them on multiple issues that affected Saskatchewan and the Country as a whole.

Husain- Mississauga


Presentation- 7/7/07

This weekend I was fortunate enough to represent the young liberals at the National Women's Commission training day in Kirkland, Quebec. It was a great experience for me and I had a great time speaking with the female Quebec candidates about new media. During the presentation Mme. Krieber helped out by commenting on Blogs and facebook. She mentioned to the group of candidates to check out her favourite blogger, Jason Cherniak. J'étais vraiment heureuse quand beaucoup des candidates en mentioner qu'elles ont vu les ad Libérale, "Liberal vs. Conservative," Elles étaient vraiment fier du travail que nous, les jeunes libéraux, faisons chaque jour. It was a great experience for me and as a young woman in politics I am looking forward to working with this organization in the future.


Phonebank Marathon

Watch out Conservatives! The Young Liberals had a very successful evening of phonebanking yesterday for an upcoming event.


My Summer in Ottawa

For the past 3 weeks, I have had the opportunity to work on Parliament Hill as part of the Liberal Summer Internship Program and it has been amazing.

Being from Sault Ste. Marie and only having been to Ottawa for a few days at a time, I really didn't know what to expect of the city or the atmosphere on the Hill. I can honestly say that everybody I have met has been great and the experiences have been really fun.

During the past 2 summers, I had interned in Toronto at Queen's Park and while I really enjoyed my time there, Parliament Hill is a totally different atmosphere. One reason for that is because Queen's Park Liberals form the government, while Ottawa Liberals form the opposition. Because we are in opposition and there are fewer interns and fewer staffers, it feels more tight-knit and everyone genuinely has a good time together and from a work standpoint, it feels like everything that I do is important to winning the next election.

My time in Ottawa so far has been one great time after another. From socials at D'Arcy McGees, to parties at Stornoway, to my first Canada Day on the Hill, this has been a summer to remember. With 2 months left, I can't wait to see what else happens.



Women's organizations cut staff in wake of Conservative funding guideline changes (EN) (FR). Je n'oublierai pas la prochaine fois que je...

Hamilton Youth "Take Back Canada"

The Hamilton Young Liberals started Canada Day by going to the heart of Tory country, the rural area's of our riding. We marched with our candidate, Arlene MacFarland Vanderbeek, in the Lynden Canada Day Parade. Expecting to find a frosty reception, we found the town lining the roads welcoming us to their community.

"Harper lied about income trusts," one resident told me. "I'm not going to get fooled again. You've got my vote next time around".

"We need to get serious about cleaning up the environment," another resident told me.

"We shouldn't be in Afghanistan anymore," another person said.

We finally knew that we had made an impact when a older gentleman yelled from the sides of the parade route, "Go Grits!".