Kennedy Stewart (Canadian politician)

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Kennedy Stewart
Kennedy-stewart-mp-burnaby.jpg
Member of Parliament
for Burnaby—Douglas
Incumbent
Assumed office
May 30, 2011
Preceded by Bill Siksay
Personal details
Born (1966-11-08) November 8, 1966 (age 47)
Halifax, Nova Scotia
Political party New Democratic Party
Spouse(s) Jeanette Ashe

Kennedy Stewart is a Canadian politician and academic who is currently the Member of Parliament for the electoral district of Burnaby—Douglas. He was first elected to the Canadian House of Commons for the federal New Democratic Party in the 2011 election. He is the Official Opposition Critic for Science and Technology.[1] Before his election, Stewart was an associate professor at Simon Fraser University's School of Public Policy.[2]

Early life[edit]

Stewart was born in Halifax in 1966 and raised in Wolfville, Nova Scotia,[1] where he earned his bachelor’s degree in history from Acadia University.[3]

After moving to Burnaby in 1988, Stewart played bass guitar for the pop music band State of Mind,[4] winning three West Coast Music Awards in 1991.

In 1995, Stewart received his master’s degree in political science from Simon Fraser University, and a PhD in government from the London School of Economics in 2003.[5] Stewart has also frequently appeared in the media as a political commentator, including writing a blog for the Vancouver Sun. He is currently on leave from Simon Fraser University’s School of Public Policy.

His publications include Local Government in Canada.[6] Stewart’s wife Jeanette Ashe teaches politics at Douglas College.

Political history[edit]

On March 28, 2004, Stewart won the NDP nomination for the federal riding of Vancouver Centre in a close three-way race. Although he lost in the 2004 general election by 4,230 votes, he increased the NDP's vote share in Vancouver Centre by 20 percentage points compared to the 2000 election. On February 25, 2011, Stewart secured the NDP nomination for the federal riding of Burnaby-Douglas in a first ballot victory.[7] He won the riding in the 2011 general election with 43 percent of the vote.

41st Parliament[edit]

In 2011, NDP Official Opposition leader Jack Layton appointed Stewart to the NDP Shadow Cabinet as the official opposition critic for Western Economic Diversification and as a member of the standing committee on justice and human rights. Interim leader Nycole Turmel appointed Stewart as associate critic for natural resources. While serving on the Conservative-dominated Standing Committee on Natural Resources, the Committee adopted Stewart’s motion to study the Current and Future State of Oil and Gas Pipelines and Refining Capacity in Canada.[8]

In 2012, NDP Official Opposition Leader Thomas Mulcair appointed Stewart as Official Opposition Critic for Science and Technology and as a member of the Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology. Stewart has tabled numerous motions in the House of Commons to protect scientific integrity and end the muzzling of scientists, as well as a private members’ bill to create an independent science watchdog.[9] Stewart also introduced a motion to bring electronic petitions to the House of Commons, which has been endorsed by Ed Broadbent, Preston Manning and Conservative Party backbenchers.[10] The motion was narrowly passed in January 2014.[11]

Stewart has held numerous consultations with Burnaby residents on Kinder Morgan’s proposal to build a new export-only, bitumen-based crude oil pipeline in the area.[12] Following the consultations, he became a vocal opponent of the project, citing his community's concerns over property expropriation, decreasing housing values, increased tanker traffic in the Burrard Inlet, the use of temporary foreign workers and the lack of benefits for British Columbia.[13] Stewart has also worked to save Burnaby’s Chevron refinery.[14]

References[edit]

External links[edit]