With the announcement Monday that Dr. Robert Kitchen, the Conservative MP for Souris-Moose Mountain, would not be seeking re-election, the process is now underway for to select a new candidate for the next federal vote.  

The first to make the announcement they would be running was the Saskatchewan Party MLA for Moosomin, Steven Bonk.  

“I’m quite excited about this,” Bonk said. “I’m very excited to help out any way I can in Ottawa. I feel that there’s a lot that needs to be done. The current government we have, the Liberal government, has done so much damage to this country, and I’m so excited to be part of Pierre Poilievre’s team, and I share his vision for Canada completely.” 

The other name put forward is Michael Strachan, who is the mayor of Torquay. Strachan noted whoever is the candidate, will have large shoes to fill. 

“Robert (Kitchen) has been a really good advocate for this riding,” Strachan said. “He’s been a bridge builder. It’s one of those things you don't see so much in politics these days – somebody that goes across the aisle and talks to other people, and tries to bring the message from their riding.”  

The energy and agriculture sectors, and their place on the global markets, were two areas both of those in the nomination race mentioned as being important and something they would be advocating for.  

“I don’t think there’s a part of Saskatchewan that relies more heavily on international trade than southeast Saskatchewan, and that’s a bit of a passion of mine,” Bonk highlighted. “I’ve got 25 years of international experience in trade and agricultural policy, and that’s something I would like to bring to the fore, and if I have the chance to serve, that’s something that I hope my experience could be used.” 

“I think we need to give energy workers, whether they’re in coal, oil and gas, electrical, power plant, a certainty,” Strachan noted. “That’s something that’s missing from this whole discussion is people that work in those sectors don’t have certainty that they’ll have jobs in five, ten years, and that’s something that’s missing.” 

The deadline for voters in the constituency to be able to purchase a membership in the Conservative Party, which will allow them to vote in the nomination process, is today. No date has been set as of yet for the nomination meeting.  

Dr. Robert Kitchen was first elected in 2015 and was re-elected in the 2019 and 2021 elections. While he has announced he will not be on the ballot in the next federal election, he will be continuing to serve as the MP for Souris-Moose Mountain until the next election is called.