Has the Conservative Party targeted the West Vancouver-Sunshine Coast-Sea to Sky Country riding as a safe haven for Trade Minister David Emerson?
A rumour making the rounds has Emerson, the MP for Kingsway who ran as a Liberal, then crossed the floor to the Tories after the election, running in this riding instead of facing angry voters in his own riding.
John Weston, the Conservative Party candidate of record for the West Vancouver-Sunshine Coast-Sea to Sky Country riding, said he has spoken to Prime Minister Stephen Harper about the rumour.
"When I spoke to him, certainly he hadn't any such targeting at all," Weston said. "I've spoken to David Emerson and when I last heard from him, he was going to be running in Kingsway."
However, Weston didn't rule out that he will be facing competition to gain the nomination.
"It's such a wonderful riding, I think it makes sense that there be some competent and well-meaning people who want to serve," said Weston. "There may be others too who want to run."
Weston is running for the nomination, he said, and the process is open for others.
"Our party is a democratic party. There will be a nomination contest and that's part of the process. I'm looking forward to that," said Weston.
Weston added he wasn't daunted by the prospect of Emerson running in the riding.
"If there weren't people of Emerson's calibre interested, I would wonder what I was doing," he said.
Weston said that as the candidate of record, he continues to work for constituents. "I made promises during the campaign," he said. "For most candidates around the country, you make your promises, you don't win the election, and that's the end of it. Since I'm continuing, I have this official role as candidate of record."
Weston has been to Ottawa recently and has spent a lot of time on behalf of constituents, he said.
"People are deploying me, getting answers from me," he explained. "I'm connecting with ministers and senior officials and getting answers for people and I'm working on projects."
People in Powell River still have a connection to the government side of the House of Parliament through him, Weston said.
"Of course they still have their MP, Blair Wilson," he added.