Bialik High School teacher Jeff Itcush (pictured below) will be introduced Monday, August 23 as the New Democratic Party (NDP) candidate in the federal riding of Mount Royal, currently held by Liberal MP Irwin Cotler. NDP Leader Jack Layton and Deputy Leader Thomas Mulcair (MP for Outremont) will be at the announcement, which will take place at a Queen Mary Road restaurant.
Itcush was brought up in southern Saskatchewan and has resided in Montreal since 1989. He has studied at universities in Saskatchewan and Quebec. Most of his professional life has been in the field of education. He isa former president of the Federation of Teachers of Jewish Schools and has worked in labour negotiations and advocacy. Itcush has worked with several community groups and has done political organizing at the federal and municipal levels in Montreal. In addition, he has been a candidate for elections at those levels, including other runs for the NDP. He has a particular interest in First Nations culture.
Mount Royal has always been a Liberal stronghold. At the age of 70 Cotler is showing no signs of retiring. Prime Minister Stephen Harper has endeared himself to the Jewish community for his unqualified support of Israel. People are eager to see whom will run for the Tories in the next federal election. Itcush will give the NDP their most high profile candidate yet in this riding.