Seeing as the Conservative Party is none too happy with the idea of urban-only ridings finally coming to Saskatchewan, they’d rather not see this be created.
And after Saskatoon-Wanuskewin MP Maurice Vellacott finished raging before the Procedure and House Affairs Committee about how the boundary commission is biased, Regina-Lumsden-Lake Centre MP Tom Lukiwski proposed his own solution.
He told the Procedure and House Affairs Committee that while he doesn’t agree with the boundary commission’s proposal he understands that they’re hell-bent on bringing in urban-only ridings. Accepting that, he thinks their map would be improved if they moved the Cathedral neighbourhood out of the new urban-only Regina-Lewvan riding and into the one urban-rural split riding, Regina-Qu-Appelle, home of house speaker, Andrew Scheer.
The proposed Regina-Lewvan riding is in that image above, with the part Lukiwski wants moved coloured green. Click to embiggen.
Lukiwski’s reasoning is that he anticipates great growth in the Harbour Landing neighbourhood and in years to come that will make the Regina-Lewvan riding over populated. By shifting Cathedral to Regina-Qu-Appelle, Regina-Lewvan will be under populated for a while but can be free to grow in future.
A conspiratorially minded fellow, however, might think this is a move to gerrymander Regina’s ridings and shift Cathedral’s often-NDP-friendly voters into an riding where their votes will be offset by Conservative-friendly rural votes.
But that’s just what a conspiratorially-minded fellow might think.
Now there’s no reason to think the Procedure and House Affairs Committeee will pay any attention to Lukiwski — although, based on his chummy testimony with them, it sounds like he was once a member of that committee and the men on it seem to hold him in some regard. But even after the committee makes their recommendation, the boundary commission doesn’t have to take them into account in their final plan.
Either way, seems the boundary commission fight is far from over.
You can listen to the complete April 16 meeting of the Procedure and House Affairs Committee meeting at this link.