Earlier this week Rob Anders and Garry Breitkreuz, pro-life Conservative MPs who are not running for re-election, made statements in the House of Commons saying good-bye to colleagues and thanking supporters. There are two excerpts worth highlighting.
Yesterday, Breitkreuz (Yorkton-Melville) said:
I will give members an idea of what has moulded my career here. I became a Christian when I was in university. It was a huge struggle for me. I was challenged to scratch below the surface on issues and I dabbled in many faiths. Finally, I had to make a decision. Scratching below the surface has defined my career here.
I was challenged shortly after I was elected by my constituents on the gun control issue. Some know my nickname is “Mr. Gun”, but I was challenged to scratch below the surface on that issue and the rest is history. I had never planned on that. I know very little about firearms and yet by scratching below the surface, I realized that $2 billion would be much better spent by putting 10,000 more policemen on the street if we are going to improve public safety. That is just the bird’s-eye view of what has become almost a defining part of my career here.
I worked a lot on the abortion issue and again, I had to scratch below the surface. What is it that is in the womb of a woman? I had to look at that very carefully. There are so many other things that I have worked on and I always tried to take a principled approach. Many people have helped me in that and I want to thank them very, very much.
The opposition members are a key part of that because they challenge our thinking.
On Tuesday, Anders (Calgary West) thanked many of those in various communities and who fought on various causes, for assisting him over the years, including in the social conservative movement:
I thank those in the Family Life Centre, like Elizabeth Shaw and Trassa Van Ommen Kloeke; those involved with My Canada, who were making sure that young people got active in politics, evangelical youth Faytene Grusechl and Valerie Josephine Trudel; those with the Canada Family Action Coalition, Curt Storring and Richard Dur, and those with Campaign Life Coalition, Jack Fonseca, Johanne Brownrigg, and Sharon Rose.
We at The Interim thank both of them for being outspokenly pro-life and pro-family over the years. They were, as Anders calls some of his colleagues, rocks of men. Their reliably pro-life and pro-family votes and support will be missed. We wish them the best in their future endeavours and hope that they will continue to be involved in the pro-life and pro-family cause whatever their post-MP careers find them doing.