At the admittedly young age of 23, Newmarket native Karmangah Tait felt compelled to get involved with the newly formed People’s Party of Canada as a candidate in the fall's federal election.
“I have been interested in politics my whole life. Albeit I am young, but that love of politics has been with me for a long time,” said Tait, now a Springwater Township resident. “I just didn’t think there was a party that represented my libertarian views and with the People’s Party looking to get off the ground this election, I felt compelled to get involved.”
Tait is the party's candidate in the Barrie-Springwater-Oro-Medonte (BSOM) riding, which has been a longtime Conservative Party stronghold.
Born in Newmarket, Tait is attending the Orillia campus of Lakehead University, studying environmental sustainability, with a minor in economics.
The BSOM People's Party of Canada electoral association said in a statement that Tait “represents the youth initiative, is motivated to clean up government with respect toward our community, residents and country. He embodies the movement (and) message of our party, the global rise in national identity politics, while maintaining his mutual respect toward other’s freedom of opinion and speech.”
Asked about his thoughts on the public perception that the party is radically right wing, Tait responded that it's the right of the people to express their opinions, but conversation would be better.
“We live in a free country and people can think what they want,” he said. “That said, I believe that engaging in debate is the only thing that helps fix radical misrepresentation. This isn’t about one ideology, there is no reason we can’t have political fluidity. Everyone is welcome to join the party.”
Tait said due to his youth and inexperience, it will be an uphill battle, but one he's ready for.
“This is certainly a lot like David versus Goliath,” said Tait. “What we have going for us as a party is that people are looking for change, they are looking for a new voice and to be heard and to open the platform to different ideas.
"There may be others with more political experience, but do they have experience in the questions that need answered today? What to do about climate change, how do we deal with artificial intelligence, thousands losing jobs in Oshawa at GM and more everyday dealing with unemployment, what are they going to do about that? It is an even playing field in that manner," he added.
The federal election is Oct. 21.