The Marijuana party smoked up a great showing in those two federal by-elections this week.
Alex Neron hitchhiked to Nova Scotia to take on Joe Clark, carrying a copy of a letter Clark wrote in 1979 in which he states his belief that marijuana is a harmless herb. "People here (in Wolfville, Nova Scotia)," says Neron, "have been very, very gentle and very, very kind. They were actually listening to us."
Twice during the campaign, the former PM was presented with evidence of his previous musings, and both times he ducked the issue by running out the clock with safe ramblings about medicare.
Things came to a head at what was supposed to be an all-candidates meeting at Acadia University. Sources at Acadia say Clark warned the student union president, "I won't be coming if you have the Marijuana party."
Neron was refused admission. But on election day, 697 people in Kings-Hants riding voted for him.
Out west, Marc-Boris St.-Maurice discovered that the Bible belt has a heart. Late in the campaign, Stockwell Day -- who favours decriminalization -- made a surprise appearance at a Marijuana party rally.
In a field of eight candidates, St.-Maurice garnered 436 votes, or 1.6 per cent of the electorate. While that number seems low, the Okanagan-Coquihalla riding contains some of BC's prime marijuana-growing country and many pot types were presumably working on the harvest.