Cornwall Chamber Forcing Candidates To Sign Facts Only Document Before Appearing at All Candidate Debate in Cornwall Ontario

Cornwall Chamber Forcing Candidates To Sign Facts Only Document Before Appearing at All Candidate Debate in Cornwall Ontario

JG Election 300x250-02  TESTCORNWALL Ontario – I’m facing a huge decision in this election.    The Chamber of Commerce, in spite of the letter from the Ontario Civil Liberties Association, is not backing down on its demands.

For the first time it is forcing candidates to sign a document to participate in the All Candidates Televised Debate on the 15th of October at the Civic Complex.

It essentially is a binding agreement for all candidates that appear and until this election has never been done in Cornwall.

Likewise none of the other debate events in our city involve signing such an agreement.

chamber agreement

While the form may seem innocent enough at first it’s the combination of the guidelines that truly make this a scary move that would make any fascist proud.

chamber guidelines

There are no definitions or devices to insure what is being asked.   What if a moderator accepts a statement made as factual that isn’t?  What if they decree that a statement of fact isn’t and actually is?  Their own employee, Mike Metcalf, just posted a letter to the editor in Past Chamber President Rick Shaver’s Seaway News that was filled with non factual statements. Will he be a moderator?

Why the last sentence for Mayoralty candidates and not for council?

Is this supposed to be a debate?  Debates get messy.  They include opinion.  According to the document that the chamber is forcing candidates to sign there clearly can be none stated.   Who will be fact checking and will the debates stop if a candidate challenges a fact?

As to apparel we’ve already covered that with Chamber President Kevin Hargreaves stating that the Charter of Canadian Rights and Freedoms doesn’t matter.     As a follow up I asked him what if a candidate wanted to appear in drag?  His answer?

Kevin Hargreaves Photo:Facebook
Kevin Hargreaves Photo:Facebook

 If the candidate lives their life among the LGBT community they can come as they normally would dress, no problem.

I know.  I couldn’t figure out that one either?  I asked him if candidates had to declare their sexuality before appearing at the debate and his response to that was short.

No and I’m done with this question.

One of our candidates is a lawyer and one is a paralegal.  Some running actually know better.   Surely if 31 candidates refused to sign this document a solution would be found but sadly as of yesterday when the chamber issued a final alert only myself, Leslie O’Shaughnessy, Todd Bennett, Davey Bedard, Bernadette Clement, Brock Frost, Greg Kielec, Elaine MacDonald, David Murphy, Gerry Samson, and Guy St. Jean had not returned their signed forms with October 6th being the deadline.

I’ve spoken to my advisors and some of my supporters, and all are pushing me to sign the document and appear no matter how much no elected official should ever sign a document as open ended as this.   Can you imagine signing an agreement with the Feds over our waterfront if it was worded like this?

Frankly the big issue isn’t the apparel clause.  For example if the Chamber had simply asked candidates to wear Black Tie or Business Professional there would be no questions; but this is more about someone wearing a message t shirt than anything else and that’s sad when you think about an organization doing that.    I mean if a candidate did that; or wore a clown suit the voters would judge them accordingly.

It should not be up to the chamber to favor one candidate or another; but it’s the stifling of free speech in a debate that’s of most concern and should be for anyone wanting to represent the greater good of the public.   Are we going to tell Chamber members who to vote for now too; or what to put on the menu’s of their restaurants or not to use pre-cooked frozen foods any longer?

I thought I’d ask our viewers what you thought about Mr. Hargreaves and the Chamber of Commerce first ever documents that seem created for one purpose only and that’s stifling actual debate?

You can post your comment below and vote in our poll.

To reach Mr. Hargreaves you can email him at kelseys7091@cara.com or drop in at Kelsey’s (a Cara restaurant) to speak with him in person.

Should the Cornwall Chamber Revert to 2010 Debate Guidelines?

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MelmanBelieve Me 1David OldhamGary W. Samleradmin Recent comment authors

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Hugger1
Guest

Seems to me the CoC is trying to control the debate and how it is perceived by the voting public. They also seem, by pushing the guidelines, etc., how each candidate appears.

Sue Smith
Guest

what are you afraid of Jamie? Can’t debate without slinging poop everywhere. If you have facts and can confirm them, then you have no worries. BUT we all know that all you do is LIE and that is why you don’t want to go too the debate because you can’t back up your accusations!

Stan
Member

What on earth does the Chamber of Commerce have to do with Municipal Elections? It sounds like a “Big Brother” thingy.

marc
Guest

I will not vote for anyone who will sign that waivier to pertisapate in this riged debate the chamber is putting on.Hopefully more voters feel the sameway as i do.Nothing but bulls— from our very own chamber of commerce.

Hugger1
Guest

Stan…..the CoC has really nothing to do with the election. But CoC’s typically host debates before elections. I’ve never seen one with so many conditions to participate before though.

Hugger1
Guest

Admin….agreed. I don’t think it’s just you that the CoC is worried about. I think it’s any candidate not clique approved that has the CoC concerned. I think the CoC would be making a huge mistake if they have police visible or involved as the debate will be on TVCogeco. Agreed, Cornwall deserves a fair debate. If the CoC board has not sanctioned Kevin Hargreaves yet to me it means one of two things….either they agree with him or it’s been dealt with quietly behind the scenes. Will we ever know the truth? I seriously doubt we will.

Hugger1
Guest

11

Hugger1
Guest

11 out of 32 candidates refusing to sign the “Agreement Form” to me shows there is a problem. To me it shows the CoC is pushing too hard to enforce a CoC / clique approved debate and showcase CoC / clique approved candidates.

Hugger1
Guest

Perhaps. But as the deadline is Monday I’d think if they were going to sign they would have by now.

garywsamler
Member

Dear CFN readers, As a candidate running for a seat at city council I did sign the C of C agreement form and I will abide by their guidelines. This is my personal decision as I have no issue with the Chamber, the document or the guidelines. The other candidates are free to decide if they want object to the document or not. I am in no way a member of any Cornwall clique and I have no affiliation with the C of C in any way. In my opinion the most important part of this campaign should be about… Read more »

David Oldham
Guest

For there to be any validity to the meeting under these rules/guidelines the moderator could not be from Cornwall nor have met or come to know otherwise any of the candidates for mayor or councilor. The form clearly indicates that sole discretion lies in the hands of the moderator without recourse. The moderator therefore would have to demonstrate their capability of total neutrality. Personally I would not sign such a demeaning document that in no way protects me from a potentially biased moderator. I question the true source for the very concept of this instrument and suggest that there was/is… Read more »

Steve
Guest

An old timer once told me “Unless its unsafe, obey now and grieve later.”

“Stand your ground” it appears you have them worried.

Sign on the dotted line, under duress if need be. Let the debate set your next course of action. And let the electorate decide theirs.

Hugger1
Guest

David Oldham… Side Show Bob mentality is being polite.

marc
Guest

Sorry Mr,Samler but you just lost my vote,Good luck in the election.I think you would make a good councillor

jules
Guest

Mr. Samler you have the experience from the previous time how corrupt running for mayor and council is really like. I would like you and others to play Mr. Pat Finnerty’s video and stay on it until the end because it is the ending (close to the end and end) that is the interesting part with the truth. Now and then I like to play Mr. Finnerty’s video which I bookmarked and he talks about children going to bed hungry in Cornwall and about those who loll away in their ivory towers (the rich) who don’t give a rat’s ass… Read more »

Jane Doe
Guest

I do not like the sounds of this at all.. I have never heard of such a thing… the way i see it is if the moderator likes you your answer will go through if not well they will not accepted …… never heard of such BS it would need to be an impartial moderator and where are you going to go to have to get this and why in the heck is chamber of commerce involved in this..

jules
Guest

Mr. Samler if I were living in Cornwall you would get my vote. I don’t give a rat’s ass about the Chamber or any other except for good candidates. I can just picture the Barney Fife PD having their eyes glued on our Jamie. LOL LOL. ROLF! I have to see the videos when they come out. I don’t get Cogeco only Rogers and I don’t watch TV only my family so Jamie will have to have them on video on youtube for me and others who are keeping track of what is going on in Cornwall. Yes as a… Read more »

Trevor
Guest

The CoC would fit in well with Chinese style politics. As someone else has said already Jamie, you seem to have some people quite concerned about what you may say. You have already proven you can articulate well and make very valid points within the rules of the debate guidelines, as evidenced by your speech at the library debate. If there were more time and more debates scheduled I would suggest boycotting this obvious attempt to thwart free speech, to make a point. However, since this is not the case I think you would make more of an impact by… Read more »

garywsamler
Member

Marc I know that I will make a good councillor and thank you for having confidence in my ability.That is why I am running. The Chamber debate is one way I can get out to tell all Cornwall voters why a vote for me will ensure that any changes for moving Cornwall forward over the next 4 years will be done right. I strongly believe we need to do better I served my country proudly and I have the leadership and I am willing to fight for the best interests of my community.

jules
Guest

Jamie the more I am sitting here this evening the more I smell a set up or a big rat. It is like the Chamber is supporting Bare Ass in some way or other where if you tell the truth they knock you down. Even what Mr. Samler said about what he went through in the last election was completely unfair. This time around is not democratic in any way whatsoever. Gee now I will miss out on the action of this sham of an election. If this is what they have in store you might as well not have… Read more »

marc
Guest

I whole heartly Belive you Mr,Samler but that being said you have to ask yourself. Why is the chamber forcing these rules on anybody?We certainly no why this is happening it doesn,t take a brain scientist to figure this one out.Our mayor Mr. Kilger talks with forked tonque If he,s all for transperance and honesty he himself should never agree to sign this form.I feel who ever agree,s to these rules and doesn,t stand up to this form of bullying, is just following the flock and will not get my vote.Everyone seems to want change but will not standup for… Read more »

David Oldham
Guest

@ADMIN. Perhaps in your closing remarks you could dare speak some truths concerning Cornwall’s reality and then with little fanfare voluntarily leave the podium and escort yourself out of the building.

Provided that the police have not been instructed to shoot first you should be okay other than the likely life time ban of appearing at or attending chamber functions in the future.

David Oldham
Guest

Trevor’s “Chinese style politics” statement is both sad and appropriate in the same breath. Like yourself ADMIN I am appalled by the lack of apparent concern or understanding by the other candidates.

I had considered running for council. Now I wished I had. My fortunately small list of regrets has just grown by one item and I admit that I made a mistake.

David Oldham
Guest

I agree ADMIN and your statement and the situation itself reminded me of something Abraham Lincoln said, “Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.” Enough said.

Believe Me 1
Guest

Only conclusion a reasonably intelligent person would be able to take over this Corn Chamber of Commerce baloney is that they are
in Kilger’s pocket. Shame Shame Shame
These imposed restrictions hinder proper open debate and by so doing it then becomes a Controlled Debate a Farce only in favor
of Kilger.

Believe Me 1
Guest

Adm!
Most of the current Councilors are as I see it also in the club
blindly supporting Kilger and the Controlled Debate if they were
to do otherwise and the TRUTH came out it would clearly implicate them as supporting what they knew or should have known
to be illegal or wrong going back to CAO FITZ etc.
As for the NEW would like to B Couns, some would fit right in to
the current crop while others are reluctant to stand up

Hugger1
Guest

I think candidates are not taking a stand against the CoC is because they want to appear at the debate. They know if they publicly refuse to sign or say anything against how the CoC is running their debate they will be univited to attend the televised debate.

Trevor
Guest
Trevor

@Jamie,
I agree. Solidarity among counsel candidates in the way of boycotting or protesting these “new” debate rules would keep the chamber in line. I don’t see it happening and Believe Me1 has already nailed it on the head as to why this won’t happen.

jules
Guest

The problem is with the people in general who have been bullied for an awful long time and when a good man like Jamie comes around and tells them the truth, they hide and don’t want to hear it because they are afraid of what is going to happen to them. The people are afraid of the present and the future and they are like little kids with a daddy there to protect them and spoon feed them all the garbage and lies but they will take it just as long as they have a welfare cheque coming in and… Read more »

garywsamler
Member

Like Hugger 1 says I do want to attend the debate and that is why I agreed to sign the agreement. The terms for myself was not a big issue for me. This is a great opportunity for me to face the voters of Cornwall and let them decide if I am worthy of their vote.I am running for Council not Poster Boy for the C of C. I am a worthy candidate for change and doing what I feel is right for this city’s future.I have no reason to start any personal conflict with that group or any other… Read more »

Trevor
Guest

Jamie, I see a couple of interesting situations happening here which creates a possible grey area and thus a bit of a problem for many people including some candidates. There has been, as you mentioned, plenty of news to give people reason to reflect on the last 4 years and how the city and council have operated. Despite the fact that most of the other papers either don’t report on these issues or else they white wash them, we have what I believe is the largest amount of interest and the greatest number of candidates running in this election for… Read more »

jules
Guest

Jamie you just hit something on the head “Cornwall is like a closed shop” now just think this over my good man. On youtube.com when the Barney Fife PD took you out of the chamber of cretons I along with another person said that Cornwall is a closed society and that they don’t want others to know about their dirty scams, bullying, corruption, fraud and the list goes on or they run you out of town. Officer Perry Dunlop is originally from Saskatchewan and his wife is from Lunenburg and they are very good people and religious. Perry Dunlop was… Read more »

Melman
Guest

I was just following ORDERS
I heard that after WWII from the Nazis
I don’t want my candidate saying it
Don’t want my Chamber or Commerce demanding it

marc
Guest

Seems everyone new running in this election wants to bring change to our city.Lets forget about all the bad stuff that went on in the last 4 years or more in our city and lets only talk about the good things that have went on.Well then lets do that.I feel alot of good has come out with Mayor kilger and the councill we have now.So lets forget about the other stuff and we the people lets vote them all back in.WHY CHANGE ANYTHING THEN.If you new people running think your going to get elect with out standing up against Kilger… Read more »

Hugger1
Guest

Admin….Courtney?

Agreed on Blais and Hebert. Do we need 3 Elaine MacDonald’s on council? Nope, not if they’re going to act and vote like her.

I had hopes for Brock Frost. But it looks like he bought the River Kings to further his political career which he’ll use to further his real estate career. It would be interesting to see if he’s elected if he’d declare his conflicts of interests.

We don’t need more clique members on council.

garywsamler
Member

Mr Gilcig / Admin, As President of Friends of Vets I feel I must respond to your comment and post made Oct 5th at 6:25 am ” As much as I like Gary Samler for example his own group has remained silent on the issue”. We are a small group of veterans helping other veterans deal with PTSD and other issues after military service. We are non political but we work with government agencies if necessary. Many of our members have a distrust of government and are hurting people. Our mandate is only to help fellow vets, soldiers and their… Read more »

jules
Guest

{Moderated}

Jules, please again, short and on point. Thanks

jules
Guest

Jamie Bare Ass is a coward and how do you think that he is going to face you in a debate. Whoever made up those rules are for Bare Ass and his clique. You and everyone else including me know that there is absolutely no sense at all in these rules and they were written to protect Bare Ass and yes I know fully well what you are up against.