A fifth-place finish in a federal by-election would deter a lot of people and get them down.
Not Ed ‘Sailor’ White, who has been through too much in his life to let a loss in the St. John’s West, Newfoundland by-election loss bother him. In fact, he’s told SLAM! Wrestling that he’s looking at running again either in the federal election that the Liberal government has to call within the next year, or municipally.
“If there’s a city election first, I’m going to run for councilor at large and get on the city council,” he said.
Next time around, he expects some more help in his corner and in the corner of the fledgling Cutting Edge Wrestling Party. “I got a message from Jesse Ventura. He hadn’t known that I was down here by myself trying to get something going. On his own expense, he would have come down and helped me.” In fact, he said that the CBC is trying to organize a day where Ventura and White would meet with the Prime Minister in Ottawa
All in all, running in the by-election cost him $1,000 for the nomination fee (donated by Island RV), and $100 for various expenses. Two good friends helped canvass the St. John’s West riding, knocking on doors, putting up posters, shuttling him around.
It was partly his friends who convinced him to run in the by-election. “It was just on whim. The boys said ‘You should go after it.’ I said ‘Okay, let’s go!’ I was expecting help from all my wrestlers down here, and none of them helped me really. I asked my school to have a fundraiser for me, and they said no.”
Running in the by-election gave him a chance to talk about some issues that are close to his heart. “I believed in the issues. I got tired. I’ve been trying to get a youth centre going and I got tired of getting the runaround. So I thought maybe if I get into the election, I thought that I’d have a chance to speak my piece, get the word out that I’m trying to get a youth centre and also something to help the senior citizens.”
But like Ventura in the gubernatorial race in Minnesota, White had trouble convincing people he was for real. “They wouldn’t let me in the debate because I wasn’t a recognized party,” he said.
Sailor White finished in fifth place, about 900 votes behind the fourth place finisher Frank Hall from the newly-created Canadian Alliance Party. He was happy with the results. “I was tickled to death. I was the only one out of all the politicians, the only one to go over to my opponent, the winner, Loyola Hearn, and shake his hand, and go to the new Alliance and his hand as well. I was the only one out of all of them that done that.”
- Aug. 26, 2005: Sailor White dead at 56
- May 18, 1999: Sailor White’s story rich with triumph and destruction