Now we have a race!


Floyd Martens seeking Federal Conservative nomination

By Eoin Devereux

Neepawa Banner & Press

A new candidate had thrown his name into the race to replace outgoing Dauphin-Swan River-Neepawa M.P. Robert Sopuck. Floyd Martens of Roblin has formally announced he is seeking the Conservative nomination for the riding. Martens is the second person to officially step forward, as former KAP president Dan Mazier announced his intentions earlier in the summer. Both men are looking to fill the position currently held by Sopuck, who announced back in May that he would not run in the next federal election.

In an interview with the Banner & Press, Martens discussed the experience that he brings to this opportunity.

“I moved to Roblin about 30 years ago in the mid-80s. I came here to pastor for one of the churches and I was pastoring for a couple churches in Roblin for a number of years. In 1992, I became school trustee for what was [at the time] Intermountain and is now Mountain View School Division. I served as a trustee for at least 26 years. I’ve also served recently as the president of the school board association. Currently, I’m serving in the roles of past president. And for the last few years, I served as the president of the Canadian School Board Association [CSBA], having just recently completed my term in that position.” stated Martens

Marten noted that making the decision to run was a difficult one, but one that he and his family are feeling very positive about.

“When I heard the Robert Sopuck had decided not to run again, It made me think about ‘Is this the time or is this the opportunity to step up and step into this role. After much consideration, I decided that this is the time to do it and so, I am seeking the nomination for the party,” Martens said. “My experience the last several years, certainly on a national scale [with the CSBA] has allowed me to be in various parts of Canada and see things from a national perspective. So it became, something I thought I had to offer. A voice that moves towards getting things done.” 

The next step in the nomination process will see the sale of party memberships throughout the region. Martens acknowledges that while Mazier does have an advantage in that regard, due to starting earlier, he is confident that he will be able to make up ground and prove himself as a viable option. 

“That process is well underway. An advantage I feel I have is that I know people across the region who are extremely supportive and looking to assist me in this endeavor,” indicated Martens. “I’m looking forward to getting out there and introducing myself to those who may be unfamiliar with me. Talking with them, listening to what they have to say and showing that you want to provide a voice for them in Ottawa. There are very few issues that are simple; they tend to be fairly complex, so we need to be able to listen, give respect to people’s voices and work hard on their behalf.”

An official date to the candidate nomination meeting to occur has not yet been announced. The next federal election is scheduled to take place on or before Oct. 21, 2019.