New MP says focus is on infrastructure & new baby, as former boss weighs in on Conservative leadership

New MP Brad Vis was a longtime staffer for Ed Fast, who declined shadow cabinet role last week

New Conservative MP Brad Vis is lacking sleep these days, but it’s not his mentor’s dissatisfaction with his party leader that is keeping him up at night.

On Friday, Vis’s former boss, Abbotsford MP Ed Fast, made news when he declared that he had declined to serve in the Conservative shadow cabinet, saying Andrew Scheer deserved a team that fully supported his leadership.

A number of Conservative bigwigs have suggested the party needs a new leader, but Fast – a longtime cabinet minister under Stephen Harper – was among the first sitting MPs to openly suggest that Scheer’s days should be numbered.

After Fast spoke briefly to the CBC on Friday, his staff told The News that he would not be available to speak on the issue. The News requested another interview on Monday.

Vis, who served for years as a staffer for Fast in Abbotsford and Ottawa and was elected in October as the member of Parliament for Mission-Matsqui-Fraser Canyon, has been pre-occupied with other matters. Last Wednesday, he and his wife celebrated the birth of their second son, Nicholas, at Abbotsford Regional Hospital.

RELATED: Abbotsford Conservative MP Ed Fast declines critic role, cites Scheer’s leadership

RELATED: How two Abbotsford political staffers ended up running against each other’s bosses

Vis said he learned of Fast’s statement on Friday through the media.

He said his party had successfully elected more MPs, but was disappointed at not being able to form government.

“I’m incredibly honoured to be part of the caucus under the leadership of Andrew Scheer and, as a new MP, I’m just looking forward to getting to work on all the issues I talked about during the campaign and that’s my key priority right now,” he told The News Monday.

“Mr. Fast is obviously in a different position than I am … but I’m just going to stick my head down and get to work right now, and it’s up to the membership of our party to decide the future of our leader in April at our convention.”

Asked his thoughts, as one of those Conservative Party members, on the leadership of the party, Vis said:

“Right now Andrew is the leader. I’m proud to serve under Andrew Scheer and my job right now is to fight for my constituents. There are a lot of big infrastructure issues that need to be addressed in my riding, and that’s where I’m going to be focusing my attention.”

Parliament returns Thursday with the Liberal throne speech, but Vis will remain in Abbotsford with his family for a few more days.

On Monday, he will sit as in the House of Commons for the first time, representing the Mission-Matsqui-Fraser Canyon riding, which includes a northern chunk of Abbotsford, along with a huge swath of territory ranging from Mission to Lillooet and Cache Creek.

It will be a big moment for a longtime politico who once participated in a Parliamentary internship program that connected young professionals with MPs, and was narrowly defeated in his first campaign for office in 2015.

“It will be a little emotional for me,” he said. “It’s my first time. I ran in 2015 and I’ve been working at this a long time and I’m just super-pumped and chomping at the bit to get to work right now.”

Do you have something to add to this story, or something else we should report on? Email:
tolsen@abbynews.com


@ty_olsen
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Clinton man faces first degree murder charge for 2018 homicide at Deep Creek

Wyatt Boffa, 29 has been charged in the death of Jamie Sellars Baldwin, 43,

Toys for Joys helps give local children a Merry Christmas

This year’s event brought in cash donations and toys and provided donors with a hot breakfast

Snowfall warning continues for parts of B.C.’s Interior

First significant snowfall of the season prompts Environment Canada warning

Highway 1 reopens to traffic near Yale

A rockfall closed the highway for several hours

New visitor’s guide and trail map to be published, GCCS tells council

Ashcroft council looks at communications, the curling rink, mosaics, and more at recent meeting

VIDEO: Kenney lays out key demands for meeting with Trudeau

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney aims for clear signs of federal action on two-day Ottawa trip

Province sues over sailing incident that killed teen with disabilities

Gabriel Pollard, 16, died from injuries after marine lift failed

First Nations want Big Bar landslide cleared ASAP to allow fish passage

Leadership calling for urgent action and resources to remove obstruction on the Fraser

Assessed value of Lower Mainland homes expected to decrease in 2020

Other areas of province may see modest increases over last year’s values

Chilliwack family’s therapy dog injured in hit and run

Miniature pit bull Fifty’s owner is a single mother facing close to $10,000 in vet bills

Cougar destroyed in Penticton area after mauling dog, killing cat

This is the first reported incident with a cougar this year in the Penticton area

Feds not enforcing standards on Hungarian duck imports, B.C. farmer says

‘You have no way of knowing what’s in the bag’

No reports yet of Canadians affected by New Zealand volcano eruption, feds say

Missing and injured included tourists from the U.S., China, Australia, Britain and Malaysia

Most Read