Niagara Falls, Italian activism
key to electoral victory

di Priscilla Pajdo del August 20, 2021

TORONTO - The electoral district of Niagara Falls, is located at the southwest shore of Lake Ontario, from Toronto. The constituency includes the City of Niagara Falls and the towns of Niagara-on-the-Lake and Fort Erie.

Tony Baldinelli is the current MP seeking re-election for the Conservatives. He has represented the riding since being elected to office in 2019 with 35.5% of the vote. Liberal candidate Andrea Kaiser, local businesswoman and community leader, garnered 32.5%. NDP candidate Brian Barker, took 18.0% of the vote. This is the second time all three candidates face each other in a general election.
Prior to 2019, the Honourable Robert Nicholson represented the riding for 15-years as a member of the Conservative Party, after he was elected to office in 2004. Before that, Gary Pillitteri held the constituency for the Liberal Party between the years 1993 to 2004.

According to the latest projections by 338Canada.com (August 18), which uses algorithms that take into account results of all major polls, the Conservatives are ahead of the Liberals by 5.6%.
An area rich in natural and cultural resources, the local economy is driven by tourism, manufacturing and commercial retail sectors. The region welcomes people and tourists from all over the world.

The electoral district is home to some 136,295 residents. According to Statistics Canada, in 2016 (most current data available), Italians make up 15% of the population. Germans, another significant cultural group, represent 14% of the constituents in the riding.

The region was popular among immigrant groups, especially from Europe, following the development of hydroelectric power in the late 19th century. Cheap hydro attracted industries to the area. It became equally attractive for families looking to re-settle in a place with better opportunities.

The People’s Party of Canada candidate, Peter Taras, also aims to get support. In a statement, Taras told the Corriere Canadese (CC), “the values of freedom, fairness, responsibility and respect are the foundations for building a functional society”. He also added, “returning to traditional values of family, community and protection of the vulnerable will bring about more joy, peace and unity in our country”.
Green Party candidate, Melanie Holm, told the CC that she recognizes the varying needs and concerns of the people within her constituency. “There are a number of issues that affect all of us, including affordable housing”, she said. Holm added that, “the dramatic effects of climate change” is her “primary motivation for running in this election”.

The candidates for the three major parties did not provide comment prior to our going to print.

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