Sullivan: I’m (probably) back.

Now that the dust has settled after October’s Federal Election, I was curious as to how former York South-Weston Member of Parliament, Mike Sullivan was adjusting to the new reality of being a regular citizen once more. He agreed to an in-depth interview and we sat down last Friday over coffees in a busy Perfect Blend Bakery. We touched on four main topics that we will roll out over the next four days;

1. Fallout from the election

2. The Weston Cultural Hub

3. Metrolinx

4. The Church Street, former Humber River Regional Hospital Site.

Mike Sullivan in April 2013 as an MP campaigning for protection of the Humber.
Mike Sullivan in April 2013 as an MP campaigning for protection of the Humber.

1. Fallout from the election

We started with his experiences during the last election. Sullivan claims that he would not have done anything differently during the campaign that was the longest in modern history. He believes that the shifting of votes away from the New Democratic Party happened very suddenly during the last weekend of the campaign.

“People in the riding weren’t paying attention to the local situation They were also voting against Harper and choosing Liberals to be the ones to beat him. None of the Toronto area NDP MPs were re-elected as the Liberals captured all 25 Toronto seats. I lost a lot of friends in other ridings (who were also Toronto area MPs). It’s politics though and if you can’t take that, don’t run. You can kick yourself afterwards over things we should and shouldn’t have done but I don’t think we did anything wrong locally.”

It’s not all bad though; Sullivan is now able to see a lot more of his five beloved grandchildren, three of whom live in Mississauga and the other two in Edmonton. Last year, Sullivan and his wife spent Christmas in Edmonton and this year there will be celebrations in his home in Toronto and in Mississauga. The Sullivan family’s holiday fare is traditional and includes lots of turkey and ham.

I asked if he was thinking about staying in politics and setting himself up as the opposition to the new MP. He pondered that for a minute, smiled and said,

“Probably. Time will tell how long it will last. It’s (the next election) four years away and I’m not necessarily setting myself up in opposition to the local MP but when I see something that is unfair or not helpful then I’ll be unafraid of saying it.”

Remembering that Sullivan had a constituency office on South Station Road, and not being able to find much information about Mr. Hussen’s constituency office, I asked Sullivan if he knew where it was. Sullivan replied that it is not set up yet but that it will be in the same vicinity as MPP Laura Albanese’s. He suggested that having an office in an industrial area is, “Not helpful”.

The complex where MPP Laura Albanese has her constituency office.
The complex where MPP Laura Albanese has her constituency office.

On Monday, I checked the address, 85 Ingram Drive from where Mr Hussen will be operating. There was nothing to indicate that he has a presence in that building although a sign on a sports equipment store in the same building seemed to indicate that a number of people have been trying to contact the new MP.

IMG_0997

MPP Laura Albanese and Councillor Frank DiGiorgio already have offices in that same complex. The location may not be handy for constituents who walk but perhaps communications between those particular politicians will be made somewhat easier.

To ensure that he stays in the public consciousness, Sullivan has begun writing about issues of concern to York South-Weston residents once more. His first since the election deals with the Liberal tax cut plans.

Postscript: I had a call this afternoon from Christine Whitten who will be working in Ahmed Hussen’s constituency office. She explained the delay in setting up new parliamentary offices because, for example incoming MPs inherit their furniture from the previous incumbent. In addition, the furniture, previously used in Mike Sullivan’s Constituency Office could not move directly but had to be delivered to a storage location before being forwarded to the new MP. Things like internet and phone lines likewise cannot be arranged directly but have to be ordered through the House of Commons. Christine says that as soon as the office opens (hopefully early in the New Year), Mr. Hussen will be holding an open house so that constituents can drop by and meet their new M.P. In the meantime, York South-Weston residents are invited to contact Ms. Whitten at 416-432-2974 should they require further information or assistance.

Tomorrow: Sullivan’s thoughts on the Weston Cultural Hub.

9 thoughts on “Sullivan: I’m (probably) back.”

  1. Christine Witten’s excuses do not make any sense. Ahmed’s office is not set up either because he is lazy or incompetent. Possibly the commute from Vaughan is slowing him down.

    The election was on October 19th, today is December 22th. That is 64 days post election and yet no office is set up.

    Furniture can be moved in a day, as for phone lines if it takes two months to set up, what are we paying these people for?

    1. Christine is correct, the furniture and internet etc is handled by the House of Commons administration, not the local MP. Sullivan would have had to go through the same process after 2011. With so many new MPs I’m not surprised it’s taking time to get office open, plenty of MPs from all parties haven’t opened offices yet. It can take time to finalize leases, let alone have the House of Commons administration set up the tech stuff.

      Sullivan’s comments of “people weren’t paying attention” seems pretty bitter/arrogant.

  2. Got news for Mike. Justin’s going to be here for the next 10 years so he better get comfortable being the local opposition.

      1. No but all the negativity from Mikes end proves his childish behaviour that I noticed throughout the elections. Glad he didn’t get my vote.

        1. Ya Sarah I am sure you noticed alot. Keep the lying liberals in power….they have done soooo much for Weston.

          1. That doesn’t matter. What has MIKE done for Weston? The man who was supposed to represent us? NOTHING. He did not deserve that seat and we all know it.

        2. Ah yes one only has to turn to the provincial Liberals who have been in government for over a decade to see the positive change in YSW. How’s that Union Pearson Express serving the community? It’s okay #sunnyways.

          Look forward to your excuses for Ahmed once he finally gets his office set up and delivering the billions of dollars of investment that Sullivan was unable to do while in opposition to Harper’s majority government.

  3. Mike was an active participant in the community. He pushed Laura and Nunziata to do better. But you can’t look past him being NDP, that you would rather keep 30 plus years Nunziata and photo-op Albanese in power.

Comments are closed.