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LETTER: Liberal says election a ‘life-changing experience’

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In Clearview
Jun 6th, 2022
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Aaron Cayden Hiltz |

From OrilliaMatters, June 6, 2022
A Letter to the Editor

This letter is from Aaron Cayden Hiltz, who ran for the Liberals in Simcoe North in Thursday’s provincial election. Read the previous article: “‘Rock star’ Dunlop wins Simcoe North with a landslide victory”

Hey Simcoe North,

I’d like to start by saying that running to be your MPP over the last few months has been a life-changing experience for me. I was blown away by how much support myself and my dedicated team of volunteers received during the election. Without support from community members and volunteers, campaigns are empty shells. Teamwork is what it’s all about.

I’m used to studying policy and data. I comb over government initiatives and law, analyzing complex data points and the impacts that public policy has on all sorts of demographics. That being said, your personal stories that you shared with me at candidates meetings, at your door, or other public events have forever changed how I think about government policy. I’ll never be able to look at those numbers the same way again. They now represent all of you — real people facing real problems that require real solutions.

To say that running for you and your families over the last few months has been the honour of my life so far would be an understatement.

This community adopted me when I was 17, and very much a reckless youth. I still owe you for this, and I’m going to continue working towards a Simcoe North that values small businesses, seniors, workers, young people, and everyone in between.

To come from a homeless kid, without much chance of success, to someone who earned the support and vote of over 8,000 people in a community I call home is truly amazing.

To all other candidates, Jill, Krystal, Elizabeth, Aaron, Mark, it takes real guts to put your name out there and try to make your community better. We all have different ideas on what form that takes, but we share this beautiful home with one another and I’m proud to have had the chance to run alongside each of you.

To the folks who didn’t vote for me, both myself and the Ontario Liberal Party have a task ahead of us. We need to have clear policy ideas that benefit all of us, and we’re going to work hard to gain your trust and continue to advocate on your behalf. We’ll do some rebuilding and, with your input, we’ll come back with a solid platform.

All in all, this experience is something I’ll remember for the rest of my life. The people here are kind, caring, generous, and hard working. I was amazed by how cordial my conversations were with people who supported other candidates. Conservative and NDP supporters were respectful and engaging, even after telling me that I wouldn’t gain their support. I have the utmost respect for all of you.

So, thank you, Simcoe North. If you see me around the riding, feel free to start up a conversation.

Only together can we make our communities better.

See you in 2026.

Aaron Cayden Hiltz
Orillia

Read the letter here

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