In light of the fast-approaching 2021 federal election, the Seven Generations Auditorium played host to the All Candidates Debate last night.

The event hosted by the Kenora and District Chamber of Commerce allowed the five Kenora riding candidates to show the public what each of them is fighting for.

Each candidate responded to questions, endorsed their political platform, and provided solutions to hard-pressed issues the region faces.

Dozens of residents from the Kenora area came out to see for themselves the direction each candidate wants to take the region if elected.

Chris, a Kenora resident was in attendance, and last night’s debate confirmed which direction he will be going when it comes time to vote.

“This debate basically confirmed what I knew coming into it and kind of confirmed of a lot of the party platforms that I’ve read. Definitely confirmed that I will be voting for the NDP and Janine Seymour, based on her confidence, her experiences, basically where’s she coming from as well. I think she will a great representative for this area,” said Chris

He noted that he enjoyed Seymour’s commitment to bringing Truth and Reconciliation to the Indigenous people and what they have suffered from Indian Residential Schools.

Also, in attendance was a 16-year-old resident that has aspirations to become a political figure and is interested in politics, and offered an opinion on the debate.

“I think the debate went really well. I believe that all sides had some really strong answers. Between the two major parties, it just felt that they were reading from a script, which didn’t make it feel close to home. Janine did a really good job, I think she hit home for a lot of people. I believe that in her area I bet the NDP votes will go up after tonight,”

The 16-year-old went onto say that he has confidence in the regional representative but is worried about the federal leaders.

“I think Eric Melillo will do a very good job representing us but I don’t know if Erin O’Toole will do the same,”

The hard-pressed questions that each candidate responded to were; climate change, mental health support, senior care, homelessness, and Bill C15.

The five candidates fighting to be the Kenora riding MP are; Conservative Eric Melillo, Liberal candidate David Bruno, NDP Janine Seymour, Green Party Remi Rheault, and Peoples Party of Canada candidate Craig Martin.

The 2021 federal election will be taking place on September 20, 2021.