When the House of Commons resumes sitting next week, Skeena – Bulkley Valley MP Nathan Cullen will be focusing his attention on the nation’s finances.
NDP leader Thomas Mulclair announced a shadow cabinet shuffle on March 20 that will see Cullen move from the position of House Leader to the opposition finance critic, a role Cullen said he is excited to take on.
“I’m thrilled that someone from a northern and rural riding is going to be a big part of the financial conversation at the national level … I’m looking forward to the challenge. I think this discussion is going to be a huge part of the NDP forming government in a year-and-a-half,” he said, noting the new position is a lot more high profile than his current one.
“The House Leader is much more in the background with strategy. This position is much more of a public face.”
Cullen takes over the position from Toronto MP Peggy Nash and will be criticizing the work of newly-appointed Finance Minisert Joe Oliver, who was took over the role after Jim Flaherty resigned following eight years in the position. Cullen said he is looking forward to holding Oliver to account and bringing his background into the debate.
“He comes from Bay Street as a former executive at Merrill Lynch … I get my roots from Main Street and the small business sector, which I think is really the backbone of the economy,” he said, adding he will continue to work for the people of the riding.
“[Finance] is a big conversation … at the end of the day, one of my top priorities is making sure the Northwest gets noticed. My goal is to make sure the voice of this region is heard.”