Nicholas Insley is looking to take back the riding from the Liberals after last elections razor thin Liberal victory of less than 2,000 votes.
Who is Nicholas Insley?
Born and raised in Coquitlam
Studied economics and English literature at UBC; holds an MBA from the University of Oxford
Worked in Ottawa for five years, serving as director of communications to the former minister of state for western economic diversification, Michelle Rempel. He currently leads the public affairs team at Seaspan Shipyards in North Vancouver.
Nicholas Insley In Profile
Conservative candidate Nicholas Insley wants to take up where another young Tri-City Tory left off.
The 33-year-old, who is seeking to unseat Liberal MP Ron McKinnon in Coquitlam-Port Coquitlam, called former MP James Moore a mentor from whose experience he has benefited immensely as he navigates the choppy waters of the 2019 campaign.
"We had a really effective voice in Ottawa," he said of the 15 years that Moore sat in the House of Commons, first as a Canadian Alliance MP before eventually becoming a cabinet minister in Prime Minister Stephen Harper's government. "It demonstrates that an individual MP can have a really good impact on their community… I would love to be able to continue some of that work."
Born and raised in Coquitlam, Insley studied economics and English literature at UBC and received an MBA from the University of Oxford. He also worked in Ottawa for five years, serving as director of communications to the former minister of state for western economic diversification, Michelle Rempel.
There are many aspects of working for the previous government of which Insley said he is proud.
During his time in the House, he said, he had a front-row seat as the Conservatives slashed the GST from 7% to 5% and initiated the Universal Child Care Benefit, policies he said "saved families hundreds of dollars."
If they are returned to power, Insley said the Conservatives would continue their focus on "pocketbook issues."
Party leader Andrew Scheer has vowed to review the mortgage stress test and increase amortization periods to make it easier for first-time home-buyers to get into the market. The Conservatives also want to reduce the lowest income tax bracket from 15% to 13.75%, a move Insley said could save a two-income family $850 per year.
"It is straightforward, money back in your pockets," he said. "People know how best to spend their money — not bureaucrats in Ottawa."
Insley speaks so fondly of the Conservatives' time in power that it is easy to forget it was only four years ago that voters sent the party to the opposition benches. So what has changed since 2015?
Insley, who claims he has knocked on 7,500 doors since receiving the nomination, said residents he has met are dissatisfied with the governing Liberals and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in particular.
"I see a lot of people who say, 'I voted for them last time, I am not doing it again this time,'" he said.
But while times have changed, some of the same questions continue to dog the Conservatives and their candidates in the 2019 race.
Scheer has been less than clear about his position on same-sex marriage and comments he made in 2005 that recently resurfaced.
When the question comes up, Insley, who said he supports same-sex marriage, said people's views evolve. He once again cited Moore, who in 2006 voted against his party's efforts to restore the definition of marriage to being between a man and a woman.
Unlike then, Insley said the party has no intention of reopening the same-sex marriage or abortion debates, calling the issues the Liberals' attempts at "bringing up boogie men."
(As The Tri-City News previously reported, Insley, along with Port Moody-Coquitlam Tory candidate Nelly Shin, attended a meeting in February at a Coquitlam church of RightNow, a group that was mounting a campaign to get anti-abortion candidates elected as MPs.)
"That is not what we are running on in this next election," he said. "What we are running on are pocketbook issues and things that matter to Canadians."
Nicholas Insley in 3 minutes
Learn more about Insley
Explore the Coquitlam-Port Coquitlam contenders:
Dan Iova, Veterans Coalition
Ronald Spornicu, People’s Party