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Newspaper's literacy campaign left out NDP reps

As a supporter of literacy, British Columbia New Democratic Party finance critic Bruce Ralston said he would have liked to hand out newspapers and solicit donations for Postmedia's Raise-a-Reader campaign last week, but opposition MLAs weren't invited.

“Certainly I wasn't invited,” he said, noting he's participated in past years. “It looks like no New Democrat MLAs were invited to participate and I thought this was an even-handed public-spirited gesture, so frankly I'm a bit surprised.”

In Whistler, several Liberal MLAs outside the conference centre where the Union of B.C. Municipalities convention was underway handed out copies of The Vancouver Sun and stickers in exchange for donations to the campaign on Sept. 29. Postmedia owns 27 newspapers in Canada, including the Sun and The Province.

A spokesperson for Postmedia in Winnipeg did not respond to calls by publishing time.

The Georgia Straight's Charlie Smith last week noted that Premier Gordon Campbell promoted the campaign on a day when the paper happened to be going hard against former Premier Bill Vander Zalm and the anti-HST campaign.

Full disclosure: this reporter gave Liberal MLA John Rustad a toonie for the campaign, but declined a copy of the Vancouver Sun or to have his photo taken with Rustad and Healthy Living and Sport Minister Ida Chong. He took the sticker.

Andrew MacLeod is The Tyee’s Legislative Bureau Chief in Victoria. Reach him here.

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