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Longest-serving woman in Parliament admits SNC-Lavalin controversy could hurt Liberals seeking re-election

Last Updated Apr 4, 2019 at 11:11 am PDT

FILE: Hedy Fry addresses a news conference in Ottawa, Tuesday June 9, 2009. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld

Canada's longest-serving female MP is concerned she could lose her seat over SNC-Lavlin

Hedy Fry argues the scandal is getting more attention than it deserves

Fry is one of majority who demanded that Jody Wilson-Raybould and Jane Philpott be expelled from the Liberal caucus

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) — A veteran politician from British Columbia is expecting fallout following the ejection of former Attorney General Jody Wilson-Raybould and former Treasury Board President Jane Philpott from the Liberal caucus.

Hedy Fry, who’s held the Vancouver Centre seat since 1993 and wants to keep her job, says she’s worried this controversy is getting more attention than issues she’s been working to resolve in her riding.

“That would be such a pity because I know what my constituents care about and we’re not being able to talk about those things with them. For me, that’s a big concern,” she says. “We were brought in to represent our constituents and I know what my constituents care about, and I know what they’re talking to me about. I really want us to talk about those things.”

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Fry is Canada’s longest serving female MP since defeating former Conservative Prime Minister Kim Campbell.

She admits this scandal could overshadow her hopes of getting re-elected in October.

“Every single election in the last eight elections that I’ve run, I’m always concerned about being re-elected because you never know,” she says. ” I am concerned that it will overshadow things mainly because we’ve put out a pretty good budget –doing so many things over the last four years. According to Statistics Canada, taking about 300,000 children out of poverty — which has been unheard of for decades.”

WATCH: Philpott, Wilson-Raybould speak out after being removed from Liberal caucus

Fry says the focus should be on issues that matter most to the people who’ve been voting for her more than 25 years.

“In one day, I got 140 communiques about the cost of telecom. In five weeks, I got 35 messages from my constituents about this issue –Jody Wilson-Raybould,” she says. “Put that into perspective: I have to respond to what my constituents seem to care a lot about.”

She insists the now independent Vancouver-Granville MP’s gender has nothing to do with the decision to kick her out of the Liberal caucus.

RELATED: Supporters in Vancouver riding would back Wilson-Raybould as an Independent

Fry says she’s one of the majority who demanded Wilson-Raybould’s expulsion because she secretly recorded a phone conversation with former Privy Council clerk Michael Wernick.

“We don’t feel comfortable sitting in the same room with someone who we think will break the confidentiality of this room,” she says.

Even so, Fry says she’s disappointed dozens of women turned their back on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau during his speech at the Daughters of the Vote event in Ottawa on April 3.

Editor’s note: This article has been updated to remove an erroneous reference to Hedy Fry voting on the expulsion of Jody Wilson-Raybould and Jane Philpott.