Senator Who Launched Petition Against O’Toole Ousted From Conservative Caucus

By Epoch Times Staff
Epoch Times Staff
Epoch Times Staff
November 16, 2021 Updated: November 16, 2021

Conservative Party Leader Erin O’Toole has removed Sen. Denise Batters from the national caucus, after she launched a petition criticizing O’Toole and asking for a party leadership review.

“As the Leader of the Conservative Party of Canada, I will not tolerate an individual discrediting and showing a clear lack of respect towards the efforts of the entire Conservative caucus, who are holding the corrupt and disastrous Trudeau government to account,” O’Toole said in a statement on Nov. 16.

Epoch Times Photo
Conservative Party Leader Erin O’Toole rises during question period in the House of Commons on March 10, 2021. (The Canadian Press/Adrian Wyld)

“Just eight weeks ago, Canadians elected Conservatives to hold Justin Trudeau accountable for his economic mismanagement, and fight the cost of living crisis, skyrocketing inflation, and supply chain issues that are crippling businesses. That is our focus as a team.”

Reacting to her ouster from caucus, Batters said O’Toole is trying to silence her.

“Tonight, Erin O’Toole tried to silence me for giving our #CPC members a voice. I will not be silenced by a leader so weak that he fired me VIA VOICEMAIL. Most importantly, he cannot suppress the will of our Conservative Party members!” Batters said on Twitter. 

The petition launched by Batters on Nov. 15 criticizes O’Toole for winning the leadership of the party by claiming to be a “true blue Conservative,” but running a campaign that was “nearly indistinguishable from Trudeau’s Liberals.”

“As Leader, O’Toole has watered down and even entirely reversed policy positions without the input of party or caucus members,” the petition says.

Batters, a Saskatchewan senator, said she launched the petition so that “our party members can have their say on the leadership of the Conservative Party of Canada.”

Her petition was dismissed by Conservative Party president Robert Batherson, who said the petition “is not in order.”

A number of Conservative MPs criticized Batters’s move, saying it distracts from focusing on holding the rival Liberals to account.

“Today, after a week of heavy preparation, I was going to launch a defence [against] Trudeau’s war on workers in a key Canadian industry. Instead, a CPC caucus member did this, and this is what will lead the news for a week. Liberals are rejoicing!” Conservative MP Michelle Rempel Garner said on Twitter on Nov. 15.

Some former Conservative MPs came to Batters’s defence.

“With thousands already signed onto the petition and dozens of former colleagues expressing concerns to me directly this is far more than one Senator expressing frustration with leadership!” wrote former MP David Sweet on Twitter on Nov. 16.