Former MP Stockwell Day came back to Penticton in July 2019 to give a speech in support of Helena Konanz during her run for one of the districts that were formed out of the one Day used to represent. (Brennan Phillips - Western News)

Former MP Stockwell Day came back to Penticton in July 2019 to give a speech in support of Helena Konanz during her run for one of the districts that were formed out of the one Day used to represent. (Brennan Phillips - Western News)

Konanz acclaimed as Federal Conservative candidate for South Okanagan West Kootenay riding

In 2019 Konanz came with 796 votes of incumbent NDP MP Richard Cannings

Helena Konanz will be back for a second crack running for MP against Richard Cannings in the South Okanagan West Kootenay riding.

Konanz was acclaimed as the Conservative candidate, with no other name put forward. She said she feels “honoured” to represent the Conservative party.

Her run during the last election ended with a narrow loss to incumbent NDP MP Cannings, with just 796 votes separating the two. She is eager for a second chance, citing how Cannings himself needed two attempts to take the seat.

“We see this as a continuation,” said Konanz. “We have our teams still in place from the last election, we are going to continue with the job at hand that we spent a year doing in 2019. We’re definitely ready.”

Due to COVID-19, her teams are having to organize in a different way than they did in 2019.

READ MORE: Federal Conservative candidate takes second shot at running in South Okanagan – West Kootenay

One of the reasons that Konanz is running is to provide representation for the riding in parliament, something she feels is currently lacking.

“What we need to focus on right now is not an election, it’s getting back to a normal life,” said Konanz. “It involves our health, it involves our businesses and it involves our way of life. I think one of the major issues right now is mental health, and we all need to get back to where people can see their friends and their families again.”

During the 2019 election, Konanz ran a robust in-person campaign that knocked on a reported 40,000 doors across the riding.

She is hopeful that there won’t be another election in the near future.

“I think it would be irresponsible to have an election called now,” said Konanz. “We’re hoping by the time the election comes around a lot of these restrictions are gone.”

The nominations for the candidacy opened on Oct. 17, 2020, with the idea of preparing for an early election if one was called.

Konanz plans to hold regular Zoom meetings to meet with the people of the riding, the date and time for the first of which has not yet been announced.

In the 2019 Federal Election, incumbent NDP Richard Cannings was re-elected with 36.4 per cent of the vote to Konanz’s 35.2, or 24,809 votes to 24,013.

READ MORE: Richard Cannings re-elected in South Okanagan-West Kootenay

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