Anaida Poilievre expected to step up fundraising role for Conservatives

Anaida Poilievre expected to step up fundraising role for Conservatives
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Anaida Poilievre introduces her husband, Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre, at the Conservative Convention on Sept. 8 in Quebec City.Jacques Boissinot/The Canadian Press

Anaida Poilievre has been increasing her profile with Conservatives and Canadians, narrating television advertising and providing well-received introductions for her husband Pierre at the party’s leadership convention and last month’s policy gathering in Quebec City.

Now Ms. Poilievre is expected to become a star attraction at party fundraising events. Her new role was signalled at September’s policy convention by Robert Staley, chair of the Conservative Fund responsible for party fundraising. Ms. Poilievre, he said, has “agreed to hit the road and do fundraisers.”

“Ana Poilievre is an important part of the Conservative team,” Mr. Stanley said during a presentation to delegates. “We’re going to send her off on her own, maybe get her to some places that, with the legislative calendar, Pierre can’t get to.”

Fundraising will be a key focus for the Conservatives as the party looks to put money in its war chest in advance of the next campaign. An election is not expected before fall 2025, with a current working agreement in place between the federal Liberals and New Democrats.

Mr. Poilievre will be on the road in British Columbia next week while the House of Commons is on a week-long break. He will be holding a rally in the Okanagan town of Oliver on Wednesday, a fundraising event in Vancouver on Thursday and a rally in downtown Vancouver on Friday evening.

So far, the Conservatives’ efforts at fundraising have been paying off. Between April and June, the Conservatives raised nearly $8-million in donations from almost 47,000 contributors. The Liberals, who held a policy convention in May, brought in nearly $3.2-million from more than 30,000 people between April and June.

Registered Fundraising Event reports on file at Elections Canada indicate Ms. Poilievre was an attendee at four party fundraising events that featured Mr. Poilievre between November and Sept. 6. There are no events listed where Ms. Poilievre was the key speaker.

Mr. Staley, reached on Friday, declined to elaborate on Ms. Poilievre’s fundraising role.

When Mr. Poilievre won the Conservative leadership, Ms. Poilievre spoke before he delivered his victory address.

At the Quebec City convention, Ms. Poilievre took to the stage again to introduce him – this time speaking about her own background. She was born in Venezuela, but her family immigrated to Quebec, a province where the Conservatives are hoping to make political gains. She was raised in the Montreal community of Pointe-aux-Trembles after her family moved there in 1995.

“I remember that Quebec welcomed my family and myself when we emigrated to Canada. I remember that Quebec is where I grew up and where I flourished,” she said.

Ms. Poilievre’s address underscored affordability issues that have been central to Mr. Poilievre’s political outreach. She said she was raised by parents living paycheque to paycheque, having occasionally to rely on food banks.

She has experience in federal politics. Her LinkedIn page references work in the Senate for seven years as a parliamentary affairs adviser, and six years in the House of Commons.

“Since 2008, she has served in senior roles with numerous Senators, including the Whip and the Government Leader,” said a note on the page. “Her role has included, among others, to provide political advice, strategic communications and media relations.”

Conservative commentator Tim Powers says Ms. Poilievre is clearly comfortable in the world of politics.

“If you’re a spouse and you are suddenly pulled into this world, and you are still learning this world, that can be intimidating,” he said. “I don’t think she has that barrier of intimidation.”

“She comes across as passionate and thoughtful on issues,” said Mr. Powers, the chairman of the public-affairs firm Summa Strategies and managing director of polling company Abacus Data. “The authenticity she provides is a highly valuable thing.”

Ms. Poilievre, who speaks English, French and Spanish, has narrated ads featuring her husband and two children, designed to introduce him more to Canadians.

Melanie Paradis, president of Texture Communications and former director of communications to Conservative leader Erin O’Toole, said it was effective for Ms. Poilievre to do the voiceovers for the ads. “She’s got a strong voice,” Ms. Paradis said.

Ms. Poilievre can reach a diverse group of people, including newcomers to Canada and young mothers, she said, adding these are demographics the party needs to reach for fundraising and votes.

“I think it is exciting that she’s playing this key role and I hope that it means that she will be successful in attracting more women in that demographic to take a second look at our party.”

Pollster Nik Nanos said that Ms. Poilievre could help the Conservatives become more competitive among female voters.

“Pierre Poilievre’s wife, if she is active in the campaign, could very well help her husband build a winning coalition along gender lines, among new Canadians and francophones,” Mr. Nanos, the chief data scientist and founder of Nanos Research, said in a statement.

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