December 27, 2008

Moose Jaw's Senate Connection

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Moose Jaw’s Senate connection

MATTHEW BARTON
The Moose Jaw Times Herald

Saskatchewan’s newest senator, Pamela Wallin, has a Moose Jaw connection.
    Wallin, known for her work as a journalist and diplomat, attended Central  Collegiate for Grades 10, 11 and 12.
From Wadena, Wallin spoke to the Times-Herald recently about her role as a senator and how Saskatchewan influenced her as a person.
    Wallin lived in Moose Jaw, Wadena, Prince Albert and Regina while growing up.
    “I think having lived in different parts of the province will make me a better person in the job,” Wallin said.
    “Knowing people from across Saskatchewan gives you a sense of how people see what’s going on in their area.”
    She said she sees the job as an opportunity to do good.
    Wallin wants to focus on the Canadian/U.S. relationship, the war in Afghanistan and Senate reform.
    “The reputation of the Senate hasn’t always been great, but I think that’s due to a small minority. A lot of good things happen there and a lot of them work very hard,” Wallin said.
    She supports Senate reform, including term limits and elected officials.
    Wallin sees her appointment to the Senate as a result of Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s push for reform. She does not support the abolition of the Senate.
    Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall recently announced his intention to go ahead with provincial Senate elections despite Harper’s choice to appoint senators.
    Wallin suggested she will wait for the province and federal government to put together a sustainable Senate reform plan.
    “I will look at the Saskatchewan legislation and talk with the premier and prime minister,” Wallin said.
    Pamela’s sister Bonnie said her family is excited for the appointment, and regard it as an achievement that rises above politics.
    “We’re really proud of her. She’s going to work so hard,” she said. “I see the appointment as one of merit, not party affiliation.”

Matthew Barton can be reached at 691-1258.

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