Paul Tuns, editor of The Interim, interviewed Christian Heritage Party leader Jim Hnatiuk by email. Here is the exchange.

The Interim: What are the priorities of the Christian Heritage Party in the 2011 federal election?

Jim Hnatiuk: The top 5 priorities from our Election Platform are:

Better Solutions for the Family: The family is the foundation of a stable society. CHP Canada’s Family-Care Allowance of $1,000 per month will assist those parents who choose to care for their own children in their own homes.  This allowance will also apply in the case where an immediate family member must leave the workplace in order to be the primary care giver for an aging parent or a disabled family member. CHP Canada will enshrine legal protections for the unborn and restore traditional marriage. 

Better Solutions for Healthcare: The healthcare system can’t continue as it is with Canadians dying from declining service quality, growing wait times, and runaway costs.  CHP Canada will encourage a competitive environment for health-service providers to offer world-class care while attracting more top doctors. 

Better Solutions for Business and the Economy: It’s time to break the cycle of government debt and high taxes.  CHP Canada will implement zero deficit legislation, reduce red tape for businesses and end corporate welfare. CHP Canada will phase out the personal income tax, replacing it with a Fair Tax system that will benefit families!

Better Solutions for Immigration: Canada’s immigration and refugee system is broken, costing Canadians billions every year in false claims and leaving our country vulnerable to threats.  CHP Canada will ensure our borders are secure!  Islamic terrorism and immigration are global threats; immigration and migration are being used as a form of jihad to impose Sharia Law on Canadians. CHP Canada will implement a moratorium on immigration from countries with Sharia-based law.                   

Better Solutions for Justice: CHP Canada will reform our justice system to be based on public safety and restitution for victims of property crimes. CHP will reform the inefficient court system, restoring the supremacy of law and ending the failed “revolving door” policy for violent offenders.

TI: What have you been doing in terms of campaigning, both locally and nationally?

JH: In the first two weeks I was able to get my team together, get up about 2/3 of my signage and start fundraising.

I then departed for a two-week Southern Ontario leader’s rally visiting and speaking in the electoral districts of York Simcoe, Perth, Oxford, Hamilton Mountain, Sarnia, Huron Bruce, Elgin Middlesex, London Fanshawe and St. Catharine’s. It was intense but extremely rewarding … our CHP candidates were encouraged and many new people coming out to hear about the Christian Heritage Party and our platforms.

TI: How many CHP candidates will be running this year?

JH: We are running 46 candidates.

TI: How do you respond to those who say a vote for the CHP is a wasted vote?

JH: The only “wasted” vote is one that is cast for a party that has not earned your vote with solid policies that will strengthen the moral condition of the country (both socially and fiscally); if you want to strengthen democracy, then you have an obligation to vote for the party that best represents you core beliefs — whether you think it will “win” or not. Voters cannot continue to give them their vote when they haven’t earned it by offering good policies.

A party can have an effect even before they actually win a seat. Poll by poll results are carefully analysed by all parties after an election to see who is growing in popularity and why. When the number of voters supporting the Green Party reached 5 or 6 percent, the other parties start to take notice. The 2008 election was an example of all elected parties trying to outdo themselves to look “green.” We must force the other parties to look at their moral obligations to govern according to righteous standards. The only thing that will do that is a vote for a party with those principles, the CHP.

Years ago, people were told not to vote NDP because they were too small and could never win; voting NDP would split the Liberal vote. Nonetheless, NDPers did not compromise their position nor do they compromise it today. In spite of their very anti-Christian ideologies, NDP are making an enormous impact politically.

Many non-Christian vote for CHP Canada because they understand that what we have in Canada didn’t just come up out of the ground and we can expect it to always be here. They understand that the liberties, freedom of religion and speech that we have is because of our Christian Heritage. For Christians however, the Bible is clear, it is God who will raise up and put down rulers. The role of the Christian is to vote for a party according to biblical principles. Having done their duty, the outcome is left up to God. The fear of Christians who vote to try to determine the outcome, or vote “strategically,” shows a lack of faith in God’s sovereign authority.

TI: How will you define success in the 2011 election?

JH: We always have the hope that one or more CHP candidates will win and that will be a great day. However, the exposure and the new interest that we get in our party is always very rewarding because it helps us to build upon our existing foundation between elections. With 6,000 members we are the sixth largest federal party in Canada and we believe  we will soon become a contender affecting the percentage of votes given to the major parties. Every new member, new vote and new supporter is a win for CHP Canada.

TI: Thank you, Mr. Hnatiuk.