Vandalism, bogus political pamphlets appear in Winnipeg Centre as election race heats up
Ben Miljure, CTV Winnipeg
Published Monday, October 5, 2015 4:32PM CST
Last Updated Monday, October 5, 2015 5:29PM CST
With just two weeks left in a marathon federal election, Winnipeg Centre remains one of the most hotly contested ridings in the country, and now some candidates say they are being targeted by vandals and impostors.
Conservative Allie Szarkiewicz and her staff proudly posed for photos in front of a new banner in front of her campaign office on Saturday.
By Monday morning, someone had shredded that banner and left in a pile behind the building.
"We were quite amazed that this was gone and I was personally hurt. Just hurt. Lawn signs disappearing is one thing but that's damaging property,” said Szarkiewicz.
"You want to make a difference? Go out and vote on Oct. 19. No matter who you're voting for, go out and vote. Have your voice heard that way instead of destroying property."
Incumbent Pat Martin of the NDP has been in hot water for using foul language at a debate.
Now, someone is using his words against him.
A phony campaign flyer on Martin’s letterhead and containing some of his most notorious unprintable quotes has been circulated.
Martin was unavailable to comment Monday but his staff said they take the matter quite seriously and will be filing a complaint with the Elections Commissioner.
"That's the type of politics that we have to avoid,” said Green Party candidate Don Woodstock as he looked at a picture of the phony Martin flyer.
Even though Woodstock has been on the receiving end of Martin’s venom in this campaign, he said he finds the impersonation appalling.
And Woodstock himself has been the victim of vandals who destroyed one of his largest signs in the riding by spray-painting over a picture of his face and altering his name.
"We have no place in politics for this. We leave this to other countries. Not Canada,” said Woodstock. “This is not the Canada we should be having. This is not the kind of democratic process that we need to participate in."
Robert-Falcon Ouellette’s campaign says so far his signs have seen only minor vandalism and his hasn’t been an issue.
Szarkiewicz is considering a complaint to the Elections Commissioner and possibly Winnipeg police.
Woodstock is not sure if he will take any action.